Old TG series: was Tiff a good presenter?

edkwon

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I keep hearing repeated wishful thinking from old school TG fans about how, in their perfect world, they'd like to see Tiff Needel back as a TG presenter. Now i never grew up with the old series, but after watching several archived eps from the old series with Tiff reviews and seeing him in action as the frontman for Fifth Gear, I cannot understand why.

What cannot be argued is Tiff is one of the best drivers, if not the best among the talking presenters (lets not include the Stig in this discussion), but as far as a presenter goes, i find his style of talking annoying, and frankly boring, he really puts me to sleep. Informative and dull, and he doesnt even have the same educated, but subversively sarcastic edge that James May has when presenting or reviewing cars.

So does anyone else find him an entertaining, enjoyable to listen to-presenter like the TG trio?

Ed
 

Masternate2071

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While he is a good presenter, he wouldn't do well in the current format of Top Gear. He wouldn't be as entertaining in any of the challenges.

When the boys on Top Gear review a car, they always seam to make it more fun by the things they say. Tiff is a good presenter, but he doesn't have that characteristic to him. Leave him on Fifth Gear.....or....maybe he's the Stig? I doubt it though.
 

edkwon

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When the boys on Top Gear review a car, they always seam to make it more fun by the things they say. Tiff is a good presenter, but he doesn't have that characteristic to him. Leave him on Fifth Gear.....or....maybe he's the Stig? I doubt it though.
If he was the Stig, it would ironically demonstrate that Tiff is a MUCH more entertaining presenter keeping his mouth shut and face unseen :lol:
 

Sir Stiggington

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I don't think Tiff is a great presenter, but he drives better than anyone at Top Gear....
 

edkwon

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I don't think Tiff is a great presenter, but he drives better than anyone at Top Gear....
well thats my point, he's clearly better at driving than talking. it actually makes me wonder if Clarkson's insult towards race car drivers in general about having 'teeny tiny little brains and unable to really think' was an underhanded slight against former co-presenter and race car driver Tiff, but he uses the Stig character as a distracter and focus of his insult on the show, so ppl dont realize its an insult directed towards his former ex-colleague and now broadcast rival.
 
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ttyrants911

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He took Richard's place last October and November at MPH at Birmingham NEC and Earls Court London. Now i have watched Top Gear since it hit the screens in 1977, and watched it all the way through Tiff's time and agree with everything already said. He showed last year at MPH he is by far the best driver, but his style of narration does send me to sleep. Saying that before the likes of Hammond and May, I thought Tiff was far better than Jason "Who ate all the pies" Dawe or Quentin "Call me the joker" Wilson. I suppose now any old presenter doesn't really cut it against the current three, as they have got the balance perfect.
 

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I agree with what you've all said, but I think he used to be a lot better. His review of the McLaren F1 a few years back was really entertaining. I don't think FifthGear is helping him improve his presentation skills. It's sortof pushing him downhill.
 

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He's a good presenter in the same way the Toyota Yaris is a good car.

But he's got as much carisma as, well, the Mitsubishi Carisma.
 

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I can take only so of much Clarksons ramblings. Fact is: Tiff is one of the best factual presenters out there. He knows his stuff and he can get the point why a car is fun to drive across. All while being fun to watch. It's just that he's horrible at "cocking about". That type of presentation doesn't suit him. And since that's the style FG is moving towards he does seem uncomfortable and out of place from time to time.
 
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maxorido

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well thats my point, he's clearly better at driving than talking. it actually makes me wonder if Clarkson's insult towards race car drivers in general about having 'teeny tiny little brains and unable to really think' was an underhanded slight against former co-presenter and race car driver Tiff, but he uses the Stig character as a distracter and focus of his insult on the show, so ppl dont realize its an insult directed towards his former ex-colleague and now broadcast rival.
No that was a slight against Nigel Mansell. That's why he called it "Mansell syndrome". Have you ever heard Nigel speak? If you want to talk about putting people to sleep, search on youtube for a video of Mansell speaking at a press conference or somthing.
 
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Tiff is arguably a better driver than the others, although his racing career hasn't reflected that!

I agree with whats been said really, he wouldn't really fit in to the current format.

I've always felt that when he drives a car hard round the track he seems to come across as smug and arrogant. You can almost hear him in his slightly annoying accent saying something like "Just look at how I drive this Porsche Carrera perfectly round this tricky left hander. This car is nearly as fabulous as me!"

Sorry, is that just me?!
 

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I don't know what it is about the way he reviews cars that gets on my nerves but he does. But damn, the man can drive. I saw him race a Lister with Julian Bailey in the 90s. Brilliant.
 

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The McClaren F1 review he did back in the day was interesting. But that was about the only one that sparked any real interest. The few clips I have seen with both him and Jeremy on screen seemed to make even Clarkson seem dull (like a disease was spreading). I think the problem is Tiff reviews everything with a monotonous slightly upbeat tone, whether he loves it or hates it. Even if he says "its....rubbish!" it still seems depressingly cheerful. Just my opinion anyways
 

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I think the problem is Tiff reviews everything with a monotonous slightly upbeat tone, whether he loves it or hates it. Even if he says "its....rubbish!" it still seems depressingly cheerful. Just my opinion anyways
yeah that is queer. :p
 

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I've seen a few clips of him in old TG and a bunch of clips of him in FG - and i agree completely with most of whats been said above. He's one hell of a driver, but as a presenter he completely fails to make me even remotely interrested and enganged in what he's talking about. He could make a Bugatti Veyron offroad destruction derby boring.
 

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hes a a good presenter, i feel he sticks closely to the tried and true style that old top gear had when it comes to reviews, he is with out doubt a great driver though, but i dont think he has a place on top Gear

now i went to MPH 06 in birmingham, hammond wasnt there obviously because of his crash, so i think Tiff stood in. now JC and May find it very easy to be funny....like genuinely funny, it just runs off their sarcastic tongues like water off a ducks back, its natural, its fluent.

tiff, by contrast, was almost like a duck out of water, his jokes and emotions felt forced and they were mostly unfunny. JC would say something smart about tiff's clothes and it would be funny, tiffs come backs felt awkward and un-funny at best.

hes a great driver and an informative presenter, but he just hasnt got the comedic quality of the 3 TG guys, nor the will to really push political correctness and H&S out of the way. pleasant chap, but not TG material anymore
 

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To be honest, the best review I've seen with Tiff, must be that with the Lotus Carlton back in the good'ol days. His remark about "But sure, back those days, they didn't even have traction control to turn off." did give me a couple of laughs.

His review of the AM V8 Vantage Le Manes was good too, and I fell in love with Audis because of his RS4 review. Even though he wasn't all that flattering about it, with remarks as "understeer, understeer". But then again, in the straights, he started "power, power, POWER!".

And he is a very good driver, no denying that. But he just hasn't got the carisma. Sadly.
 

jeffy777

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Tiff just sounds so unnatural as a presenter/reviewer. He would make a better news journalist than a Top Gear host, based upon his tone of voice. He just sounds so boring, like he's reading a script.
 
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