Top Gear USA: Episode 5

Top Gear USA To Premiere November 21st
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We are going to start betting on the fact that Top Gear USA is going to be a household name by the time it wraps up its third season. The show is gaining fans all over and the naysayers of the show are starting to come around.

And why shouldn’t they? With the funny challenges, the decent reviews, and the big stars, Top Gear USA is building itself up rather nicely. Let’s just hope that the balloon doesn’t deflate before we can win our little bet.

In this week’s episode, the guys from Top Gear USA run a few old GM models through a series of challenges to see which one should reenter production, Tony Hawk takes the Subaru around the Top Gear USA test track, and the news segment comes around again.

UPDATE 12/21/2010: Check out Top Gear USA’s rendering of their 2011 Buick Roadmaster in the gallery!

Hit the jump to see all of the details for this week’s episode of Top Gear USA.

Car Reviews/Car News

No cars were reviewed on this episode of Top Gear USA, but the producers did bring back the news segment. We are sorry to say that, while this week’s segment was funny, it was really short and lacked any real substance. We just don’t get why this was put in, other than to just waste time until the next segment. Please guy, come up with another way.

Big Star Small Car

Top Gear USA's vehicle for "Big Star in Small Car" will be a Suzuki SX4 Exterior
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This week’s big star is no surprise considering he tweeted a picture of him and the Stig before Top Gear USA even began. That’s right, this week’s star is American professional skateboarder and video game creator, Tony Hawk. The amazing and talented athlete was able to zip around the track in 1:43.2, beating out Kid Rock’s winning time.

We were just happy that Top Gear USA got the memo and let Ruttledge Wood do the interview again.

The Challenges

1970 Oldsmobile 442 W-30 Convertible
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Oldsmobile 442 W-30 Convertible

The challenge set for this week gave the boys an opportunity to bring back an oldie but goodie. Each of the Top Gear USA hosts chose an old GM vehicle they felt deserved to be put back into production for a solid revival. Adam was first, of course, with an Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme. Tanner showed up next with a Pontiac Fiero, and Ruttledge arrived in Clark Griswold’s ride, the Buick Roadmaster. All three vehicles were put through a series of tests to prove which one had the style, quality, and stamina to be brought back. Before even watching the full segment, our vote was already on the Cutlass Supreme due to the fact that we believe the old 442 package would be a great base to build off of.

Now, back to the challenges. The first test for the vehicles was a road trip spanning 100 miles. All of the cars successfully completed that task so it was on to the proving grounds. The proving grounds were described as "marine corps training for cars" and had gave the men plenty of tests for their vehicles. The first was the 0-60 sprint in which the Fiero obviously blew the other guys out of the water. The second test was done on a 20% grade incline. All three guys had to drive up the hill, park the car, put the parking brake on, and successfully get out the car to put a bowling ball in with them. The only vehicle to succeed was Wood’s Roadmaster, while Ferrara’s Cutlass Supreme didn’t stand a chance. Of course, the best part of the segment was when Foust’s Fiero slid down the hill and rammed Ferrara’s Cutlass.

The next task was performed on a low traction skidpad. The object of this challenge was to do a timed trial with 10 32oz sodas in the car, all placed within reach. Since Tanner and Adam’s cars lacked any real cupholders, Ruttledge’s Roadmaster - which was practically made of cupholders - took the win easily.

Then, it was time for the rumble strip. Each car was hooked up with a colander full of eggs and placed right above the driver’s head. Then the car had to be driven through the rumble strip at 30mph, as opposed to the 20mph limit performed with any other vehicle tested on the strip. Ferrara and Foust got yolked while Wood drove away as dry as when he began. The guys then celebrated by getting into an egg fight.

For the last test, the men changed out of their sticky clothes and into some wetsuits. The wetsuits were necessary because the last challenge brought in a firetruck ready to fill the cars to the brim with water. The object of this challenge was to drive the furthest before the water level of the vehicle dropped below the steering wheel. With Tanner out of the picture due to the fact that the Fiero wouldn’t even start, the Cutlass and the Roadmaster had only each other to compete against. In the end, the Roadmaster was able to surpass the Cutlass and win the entire series of tests.

Top Gear USA’s Rendering of the 2011 Buick Roadmaster

Top Gear USA: Episode 5 Exterior Drawings
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To drive their point home, the trio drove the Roadmaster to the GM headquarters and parked it right in front. They also tagged the car with black tape reading, "Please make this car."

Check in with us next week as we move on to Episode Six of Top Gear USA, and remember to leave some of your thoughts on this episode in the comments section below.

Top Gear USA: Episode 5 Exterior Drawings
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What do you think?
Show Comments


  (347) posted on 08.22.2011

The episode is kind of excellent. I was impressed with the featured car here. But it seems that this is just a concept vehicle.

  (517) posted on 08.22.2011

Its a great thing to know that the Top Gear US has made on their second season. I was expecting for a more deadly stunt.

  (228) posted on 03.23.2011

Well, I’m starting to like this show. I thought from the start that TopGear USA would just be a copy cat from the UK version, I guess I’m wrong for that. The guys really made their best to come up with a lively and good show for the viewers.

  (410) posted on 03.18.2011

Well, I think the show doesn’t that much. I have read recently how Jeremy Clarkson( one of the hosts of TopGear UK) actually praise the performance and driving skills of the hosts in TopGear USA. 

  (364) posted on 03.17.2011

haha. It seems that TopGear USA is not that successful after all. Imagine, they are actually in the third season after their "naysayers" come around.

  (410) posted on 01.27.2011

I’m still watching. I agree with the internet consensus - This show is terrible when held next to the original, but compared to other US car show offerings, its OK.

  (512) posted on 12.22.2010

Was at my Moms this weekend and got the REAL version, the BBC guys are great! SO I had no need to tune into this lame attempt.

  (406) posted on 12.22.2010

I’ll leave it on the TiVo list. It’s unbearable "live." But, if you can blow through it, it’s a distracting 30 minutes.

  (216) posted on 12.21.2010

well i guess I have to agree on you.. I like also the fift gear specaily tiff he’s kinda funny specially when on competition.

  (765) posted on 12.21.2010

this segment is great and interesting to watch but honestly i like the fifth gear more...why? because their reviews are well detailed and the car they use is on demand cars

  (42) posted on 12.20.2010

I have to say, although it not clarkson, hammond and may..I really enjoy watching this show. It a good thing that BBC have history channel air this show when the original top gear is offair.

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