BREAKING: BBC Top Gear Caught Filming Latest Electric Car ‘Stunt’

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Top Gear, Filming in Lincoln, England with 2011 Nissan Leaf and 2011 Peugeot iOn. Reproduced with permission, The Lincolnite

Top Gear, Filming in Lincoln, England with 2011 Nissan Leaf and 2011 Peugeot iOn. Reproduced with permission, The Lincolnite

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Uh-Ho. Despite being embroiled in a sordid libel court-case with californian electric car maker Tesla Motors for false representation of its $109,000 sexy all-electric sportscar. the BBC’s Top Gear program has just been spied in Lincoln, England - filming its latest electric car escapade. 

The U.K.’s number one motoring entertainment program, Top Gear has a long standing reputation for onscreen shenanigans best suited to the locker room rather than a prime-time show. But over recent years it has increasingly irked electric car makers and fans alike with its biased and as Tesla claims, libelous treatment of electric cars. 

Apparently legal action hasn’t dampened the BBC’s Top Gear production team enthusiasm for outrageous electric car stunts however.   Messers Clarkson and May, two-thirds of the middle-aged presenters of the show were spotted in the small English city of Lincoln taking part in another electric car adventure public execution which resulted in them running out of charge. 

Or at least, that’s what the photographs obtained from the local newspaper The Linconite suggest.  The last time Top Gear was filmed pushing an electric car it turned out to be a stunt designed to illustrate what would happen if an electric car ran out of power. 

Early reports suggest that the pair were racing each other across the U.K. in a 2011 Nissan Leaf and 2011 Peugeot iOn (sold in the U.S. as the 2012 Mitsubishi ‘i’), and had stopped in the ancient city to get find somewhere to charge their cars. 

A Youtube video quickly surfaced showing the pair being filmed pushing the 2011 Nissan Leaf into place with the aid of local University students, after a planned attempt to charge at the local Marina failed.  Clarkson can be seen clearly repeating a line, indicating that just like the Tesla fiasco, running out of charge was staged. 

Nissan Europe and Peugeot have yet to comment on the reported filming, which is supposed to be part of Top Gear’s 17th season, due to air in the U.K. next month. 

For now we can only speculate what gems the episode will contain, but it appears that just like small children, Top Gear's production crew find the same joke funny again and again. 

[The Lincolnite, photos used with permission.]

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Comments (17)
  1. On the TG show I watched yesterday, they reviewed what was purported to be a Bentley Mulsanne but was in actuality a Yugo. They also tried to shove an obese dead man (spoiler alert: he wasn't actually a dead man!) into the trunks of the various cars they were testing.
    Calling out Top Gear for "shenanigans" and "stunts" is like railing against "Real Wives of New Jersey" for staging drama.

  2. I don't watch TopGear (it actually isn't available on my cable system) but wouldn't anyway, regardless of their EV nonsense. They make outrageous claims
    but then, so do some EV enthusiasts, whose enthusiasm is way ahead of reality. Pray for DBM-Energy batteries to cost as low as some have claimed. If so, the gas powered auto is dead, and it won't depend upon hatred of gas stations, carbon, or anything else - electric vehicles are simply more efficient, intrinsically less expensive to build and operate, are more reliable and last longer. End of story.

  3. Here's some amateur video:

  4. Typical mis-reporting by Clarkson! In the unlikely event that they would want to show how good the LEAF was, they should repeat the journey (if that is what they were doing) using Nissan LEAF dealer's rapid chargers, which are spread across the UK. Then we would get a true picture of how easy it is to travel across the UK in a LEAF. You know, Nikki, you've done it!

  5. It amazes me how many people miss the point regarding Top Gear. It's an entertainment show. If you can't see this, then you need someone to explain that Anchorman wasn't a documentary.
    For this article, there really needs to be a more objective standpoint taken. Is it really a stunt to show the Nissan Leaf running out of charge when there are numerous reports of this very same thing happening to owners? Is it objective or relevant that the Top Gear presenters are middle aged?
    I, for one cannot wait for the electric car revolution that will surely come. Barring the GM Volt, though, the current cars are pretty much unusable in the real world. They are a stepping stone, but let's not lose our sense of humour.

  6. I think you meant sordid not sworded.

  7. The problem with TopGear lampooning EVs is that many of the viewers understand it as gospel. Only 12 hours ago I was at a Green Event with my Tesla Roadster and overheard a comment from a father to his child along the lines "It's an electric car ... you can't use them yet, they run out of power suddenly like a laptop, they tested it on TopGear?"
    This isn't conjecture, it's out there on the streets and in the minds of potential EV drivers.

  8. Jake - Yes. Thanks for that. No excuse for sloppy copy, so we're sorry.

  9. Michael is spot on. Top Gear is an entertainment show much more than an automotive evaluator. They take "artistic liberty" all the time and unfortunately a lot of followers either don't realize or are so loyal to the show that they just think Jeremy Clarkson would never steer them wrong. They have an obvious agenda against electrics and unfortunately a lot of people believe the lies that perpetuate. The Tesla "review" was a perfect example. I'm sure the LEAF review will be similarly disappointing, proving to the world that you can't even drive around the block without it breaking down or suddenly shutting off for lack of power. Unfortunately people will believe it.

  10. People do sadly take entertainment seriously, mostly because they're to stupid to take the time to separate fiction from reality. It's also a lack of knowledge, if you know nothing about Porsches and love to watch Top Gear you may take Jeremy Clarkson's entertaining but fictional review seriously and form a bad opinion of Porsches and the same goes for every car he drives. Now I know not every one is a car enthusiast like I am so the best advice I can give is when you read a negative review always take it lightly because it may not be accurate, the best review of a car is your own, take one or more test drives, look over the car on the showroom floor and decide for your self. With EVs read owner's reviews and articles on EV technology.

  11. Top Gear is a GREAT show but it is not ever taken seriously by us real gear heads (not petrol heads). Jezzy Clarkson has lampooned the Ford GT to no end. He even made fun of the car saying he bought it and sold it twice. The problems he had were not the fault of the car but of an aftermarket alarm system. I have two of them and it did not bother me nor harm the reputation of the car for its performance. I love cars and although I don't yet have an electric car, I am very open to it. For right now I prefer my bicycle to the anemic Prius so I will just keep waiting. Til then just enjoy Top Gear if you choose to watch it. It is really more fun than seriousness. Life is better that way when possible.

  12. Clarkson should note that those electric cars have much better range than a Ford GT that he previously owned. If there weren't so much petrol stations in the world it would stuck quite fast LOL
    Just wait for more public fast chargers and a better battery packs and a problem of EVs' limited range will disappear :)

  13. What Clarkson'does is actually very clever. He engraves pictures of EV's being stranded and pushed in the public's mind which very effectively undermines public acceptance of plug-ins since being stranded is every motorist's nightmare. All under the guise of "it's just entertainment folks".

  14. Why is TG so into stranded EV's? Because in reality they know we are running out of oil. That's their own nightmare.

  15. Top Gear is an amazing show - made amazing by the so-called "shenanigans."

  16. Hello.
    I think that Topgear are taking advantage of the electrical concept climb to launch their jokes and make their business based on hard entertainment talking around cars. They are not green and they don't want to be it, they just don't care and don't help on the education of our world around a cleaner and better place. I used to be a fan of topgear...!!

  17. Think you should all check out this awesome parody - keep you going till the episode!
    Does show up how ridiculous the show is, but also - how wonderful!

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