So Top Gear lied about Tesla?

calvinhobbes

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The company I am working for have a lots of EV cars, and I hate them because they need to be recharge many times a day given the heavy duty natural of the works and every time it run out of juice it take 30 min to 1 hour to recharge and there simply not enought charging bay for all the cars and mark lifts no matter how many they add recently while 1/3 of them have problem of sort
Yoda? Is that you, on meth?
 

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Oh, sorry for disturbing you by missing for a few , and . because my new keyborad aint as soft as yours lord Vada, can we move on please.
 

skylock

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Gotta chime in here:

Wether I agree with the review or not, that fact is that "Top Gear" really doesn't like the electric car as a whole. I mean...the presenters on the show reeeealy don't like them.

And you know what? I'm fairly sure that most people on the planet right now know that. Including most car manufacturers.

Wether it's right or wrong, if you, as a maker of an electric car go to Top Gear and ask them to do a review of your car...and you're honestly expecting a good one, you need to have your head examined.

Again, whether it's right or wrong, even if you had an electric car that was actually pretty good, and would probably work in the real world for most people, and even if it was pretty...you have to know what the end result will be.

You'd see the guys thrashing it round the track till the poor thing burst into flames, or waved the white flag. And then burst into flames again.

Then the guys would stand there and say: "See, this is why electric cars just don't work. Anyway.... lets take a look at the new Lamborghini..." while The Stig hands you a box of the parts left over that didn't burn into a puddle of goo, or were left in bits and pieces scattered around the track.

I personally don't know the whole story on this incident, but Tesla waiting this long to start fussing is just odd to me. Even if it did happen just as they said...they've had 2 years since to do their own "Top Gear" style review to try to discount every bad point that Jeremy and company sent out. And to my knowledge they haven't.

Saying that they thought it was just a car review done by some silly show, done by some guys that most people don't even know is utterly ridiculous.

Top Gear is the most widely watched show out there right now. Not even including the Dave channel constant reruns...or the massive amount of downloading going on. Since it's return in it's new format in 2002, it now has a worldwide audience of over 350 million viewers!

Let me say that again...350,000,000. Thats actually more than a Quarter of a Billion people each week watch the show.

So for Tesla to even insinuate that they had no idea so many people would be watching, and the reruns would be shown to so many people....in the world ( HA!) is beyond belief.

If you owned a Morris Marina that you loved, but were also an avid fan of the show...would you offer up your pride and joy for the boys, and The Stig to go and have fun with for a few days? I think I just heard someone scream "Hell No!" And some crying too...but never mind...

Or you had a sweeeeeeeet G-Wiz that you loved so much. Put all of your time and money into it, and then step back, and hand the keys to the Hounds of Hell themselves. Jeremy, James, and Hammond...and then let then hoon the crap outta it it for a weekend. If you were expecting that car to even existafter that...well sweetie we may have to increase your meds. :p


It's just gonna happen like this every time. For now at least.

OTOH, if I play Devils Advocate here for a minute for the electric car, then, I will, defiantly have to say that yes...eventually....under certain situations....it may be an alternative to the old ICE we all know and love. That time is just not now, I'm afraid.

The Governments are doing everything in their power to shove electrics down our throats...like it or not...as the future of the car.

Which, right now, today as I type this:


Is utter Bollocks.

Technology is growing by leaps and bounds, every day. Just like everything else in life...eventually it'll get there.

And believe it or not, I'll be happy for them. Now admittedly they do have a lot of work to do. And they are trying, which is more than most people...bless them.


Admittedly, I do like this car. Hell, I'd love anything based on a Lotus.:D If the price weren't so high, and I had already installed a surefire was to keep it topped up, or knew how to do that on the fly while traveling...I'd consider it.
I pretty much agree.

When the car was first announced at $80,000, I put my name on the list knowing really I did not have a hope in hell of actually getting one, but then the revised price was $110,000, so I completely changed my mind and the last price I saw was $140,000. No way in hell I would pay that for a car period. But I have still kind of kept up with the new twist and turns just because I once wanted one.

I think they saw what the controversity did for the mexican car and decided they wanted a bit of that. I think they are betting lawyers fees on an even bigger return. I think they will lose in the end. They should think about this very carefully.

What my advice to them would be is to spend that cash on better or different batteries/charging ways, and leave a silly review on TG alone. That review should not have swayed a single buyer of the car one way or the other. And if it did, they are stupid.
 

calvinhobbes

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Oh, sorry for disturbing you by missing for a few , and . because my new keyborad aint as soft as yours lord Vada, can we move on please.
No need to get all offended and hurt. I honestly understood no more than half of what you wrote.
 

Dr.Kamiya

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It would be very easy for the BBC to set things right:
Re-do the test, and this time actually drive the car around the track until it runs out of batteries, and then show it getting pushed into the warehouse for being out of juice.

If the distance travelled is less than 155miles (and presumably close to the 55 they claimed), then the only thing wrong with the first review would have been that they were too lazy to actually drive the car until it was out of charge, and perhaps too lazy to push it all the way into the warehouse from wherever it stalls on the track.
 

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First thought of mine: "Wow, they (Tesla) must be desperate to come up with a lawsuit NOW".

Second thought: "Wait a minute, why should Top Gear rig the whole thing without any real motivation?". Let's face it: There was no real need to rig the film about the Tesla. Top Gear is biased, yes, its presenters can be assholes, yes, but they are intelligent enough to know, that even with them labelled as an "entertainment show" such things can get very serious and can damage your reputation badly.

My theory is this: Tesla didn't know much about Top Gear and told them some marketing garbage like "We have made the greatest car in the world, its battery charge will hold forever even on a track!", expecting the Top Gear guys to believe the bullshit as every other motor journalists did without too much asking.

But the folks at Top Gear don't speak Marketing very well and are not interested in functioning as an advertising vehicle for car companies. If they like something, they say so, if they don't, they say so, too. That's the biggest difference between Top Gear reviews and other reviews. I mean, when you watch on YouTube and look for car reviews, isn't it strange, that many reviewers use the same phrases to describe the cars? That's because they didn't make any effort and simply quote the carmakers' press releases. I've driven more than 30 different new cars in the past three years and I learned a lot about things they never mention in a car magazine's review.

But Top Gear is actually one of those few, who make up their own mind and don't simply buy anything the carmaker comes up with (well, as long as it's not a British car :p But even then they don't stretch it till it snaps).

And I guess Top Gear was annoyed by the marketing bullshit of that California company and simply took them by their word and thrashed the Tesla Roadster around the track merciless and in a way the car couldn't keep its marketing promise of a 200-mile range even under worst conditions. And then they showed footage of the car being pushed back to the garage for effect.

Looks like a clear case of getting owned to me. And the fact, that they suit NOW and not 2 years before, tells me, that this is about more than just justice. Either it was unjust in 2008 (then why didn't they sue then??) or they are now sueing for another reason, because justice hasn't changed since then.

I believe that Tesla has realized: "Wow, with all those new electrical cars coming from big companies and with them making clear technical progress, nobody is talking about us anymore. We gotta need to do something to get some more rich people to buy our expensive battery cluster on wheels!"

What people tend to forget, is that Tesla didn't invent any new technology. They just took existing technology, stuffed lots of it into the body of a car and because it was very expensive to do so, they needed to charge a fortune for their product. But now the big boys in the car industry have woken up and are actually developing new technologies for electrical cars and it's only a question of time, until the Tesla business model (and their product) becomes obsolete.

"So let's sue Top Gear to get some attention again!"
 
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TC

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I think the lawsuit coming now has already been explained. Almost immediately after the original air date, Tesla released statements about the review being fabricated and false, and TopGear admitted it and claimed it was to show "what might happen".

But that was 3 years ago and TopGear is still airing reruns of that review and even releasing it on DVD, all without any apologies for basically lying. And now America has it's own version of TopGear, so what few people were not already aware of the shows existence in the UK are finding out. No doubt a great many more Americans will be seeing that Tesla review now more than ever and the BBC has no problem re-airing it without a proper explanation.

I don't think the attention Tesla is looking for has to do with selling more cars. Rather I think they want people to find out that the review wasn't honest or real. They could have released another press statement, but no doubt people would call BS and say they should sue if they have any proof. So here we are.
 

MacGuffin

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Yeah, but why didn't they sue after six months then, or maybe a year? The Tesla review has been on the internet ever since. We live in times, where we are not bound to airing times of TV stations anymore.

For the record: I swear I didn't read that before I wrote my post :lol:
 
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TC

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Yeah, but why didn't they sue after six months then, or maybe a year? The Tesla review has been on the internet ever since. We live in times, where we are not bound to airing times of TV stations anymore.
I don't think companies care much about the internet. You type in any product and you'll find people tearing it to pieces. Buyer remorse. It's pretty bad. I remember when I was shopping for furniture a couple months back. Every furniture store I pulled up online had absolutely nothing except bad reviews. Lots of angry people standing on soap boxes. But when I went and bought my furniture, it was all great. For a company to get upset about what the internet it saying would be pretty futile and pointless. I think Tesla is more concerned about TopGear having a much stronger presence in America than ever before, much stronger than 2008 anyway.
 
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Mr. Nice

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It seems to me that Tesla probably needs the publicity and may have had higher sales projections than they are finding themselves able to meet. Personally, I don't feel that the Tesla film was all that bad or all that damning, especially if you knew anything about the car. With that said, there are other reviews/films that have had incorrect content, which is really not only a failing on the part of the show, but an insult to the petrolhead viewers as well. For those who watch the show for entertainment and not the content about cars, it is merely a misleading, misconstruing of facts that will leave these viewers accepting falsehood as fact.
 
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DubyaStep

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so, tesla isnt mad about the show. according to one person at Tesla they got the joke the first time. what is causing this lawsuit is the fact that the eppisode is being replayed so often here in the US. I cant site this source because it was a few days ago but this is the reason. its sad when people from cali always think they can solve the problems in court.
 

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1. We never said that the Tesla?s true range is only 55 miles, as opposed to their own claim of 211, or that it had actually ran out of charge. In the film our actual words were: ?We (as in, Top Gear) calculated that on our track it would run out after 55 miles?. The first point here is that the track is where we do our tests of sports cars and supercars, as has happened ever since Top Gear existed. This is where cars are driven fast and hard, and since Tesla calls its roadster ?The Supercar. Redefined.? it seemed pretty logical to us that the right test was a track test. The second point is that the figure of 55 miles came not from our heads, but from Tesla?s boffins in California. They looked at the data from that car and calculated that, driven hard on our track, it would have a range of 55 miles.
Gotta get nitpicky here, because this is self-contradiction. First TG calculated the figure, then the figure came not from TG but from Tesla. So which is it, Andy? If you can't be consistent now, you're going to get pummeled in court.
 

TC

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Gotta get nitpicky here, because this is self-contradiction. First TG calculated the figure, then the figure came not from TG but from Tesla. So which is it, Andy? If you can't be consistent now, you're going to get pummeled in court.
I wonder if Andy is talking about any Tesla boffins on sight or if they got that information from the built-in range/MPwhatever calculator on the instrument cluster. I wonder because my cousin's old Dodge Ram Hemi had one of those. We would laugh, because when he floored the throttle, it would register 0 MPG. Yep, that's right, the Dodge Ram Hemi only gets 0 MPG, right from Chrysler's own computer systems. It doesn't have enough range to make it out of the garage.
 
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the Interceptor

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Gotta get nitpicky here, because this is self-contradiction. First TG calculated the figure, then the figure came not from TG but from Tesla. So which is it, Andy? If you can't be consistent now, you're going to get pummeled in court.
This is not self-contradictory in my opinion. The first statement is a quote of the voice-over on the show, the second one is what actually happened. Whether it was actually the Top Gear crew or Tesla boffins who calculated the figure is more or less irrelevant. It may be relevant to the court case, but it isn't to the viewer of the show. They could as well have said "It was calculated that on the track it would run out after 55 miles".

In other news:
Andy said:
Our primary reasoning behind the verdict had nothing to do with how the Tesla performed; our conclusion was based primarily on the fact that it costs three times more than the petrol sports car upon which it?s based, and it takes a long time to recharge; you can?t use it as easily as a petrol sports car for the carefree motoring journeys that are a prerequisite of sports car driving.
Funny thing is: this conclusion is perfectly fine. The Tesla Roadster performs marginally better in some regards than an Elise, it is much more expensive and much less practical than an Elise. If they had said that on the show, I don't think we'd have this discussion here and now. The point is that they didn't, but instead flat out lied and now say that they pretty much had to to get their point across.

I mean what did they show in this piece? That the car will do a couple of miles and then either run out of juice so you have to push it, or break so you have to push it. That is pure bullshit, and Tesla is calling them out on it.
 
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shellygrrl

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I think they saw what the controversy did for the mexican car and decided they wanted a bit of that. I think they are betting lawyers fees on an even bigger return. I think they will lose in the end. They should think about this very carefully.
I think you're probably right.

My theory is this: Tesla didn't know much about Top Gear and told them some marketing garbage like "We have made the greatest car in the world, its battery charge will hold forever even on a track!", expecting the Top Gear guys to believe the bullshit as every other motor journalists did without too much asking.

But the folks at Top Gear don't speak Marketing very well and are not interested in functioning as an advertising vehicle for car companies. If they like something, they say so, if they don't, they say so, too. That's the biggest difference between Top Gear reviews and other reviews. I mean, when you watch on YouTube and look for car reviews, isn't it strange, that many reviewers use the same phrases to describe the cars? That's because they didn't make any effort and simply quote the carmakers' press releases. I've driven more than 30 different new cars in the past three years and I learned a lot about things they never mention in a car magazine's review.

But Top Gear is actually one of those few, who make up their own mind and don't simply buy anything the carmaker comes up with (well, as long as it's not a British car :p But even then they don't stretch it till it snaps).

And I guess Top Gear was annoyed by the marketing bullshit of that California company and simply took them by their word and thrashed the Tesla Roadster around the track merciless and in a way the car couldn't keep its marketing promise of a 200-mile range even under worst conditions. And then they showed footage of the car being pushed back to the garage for effect.

Looks like a clear case of getting owned to me. And the fact, that they suit NOW and not 2 years before, tells me, that this is about more than just justice. Either it was unjust in 2008 (then why didn't they sue then??) or they are now sueing for another reason, because justice hasn't changed since then.
Exactly. As I said, and as others have alluded to, someone at Tesla is an attention whore. That's all.
 

the Interceptor

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Exactly. As I said, and as others have alluded to, someone at Tesla is an attention whore. That's all.
One single bad review done by a well-known source can destroy a product, even a whole company. That has nothing at all to do with attention whoring.
 

SirEdward

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The evidence is all out there, go and look it up for yourself.

A Tesla Roadster doesn't just stop when the battery runs low, it goes into a speed-limited range extender mode when reaching 20% battery level. Showing how the car had to be pushed into the hangar was clearly misleading. Clarkson himself confirmed in his blog that the car reached just that level and thus didn't stop completely. A BBC spokesperson confirmed that the car being pushed was shown "to demonstrate what could happen".

As for the overheating, it's the same principle. The electric motor is aircooled, so when the car is driven on a track, the motor can overheat under certain conditions. The car again automatically limits the performance until the engine has cooled down again, it doesn't just stop like demonstrated on Top Gear.

The so called "brake failure" was a blown fuse on the auto-assist braking feature and didn't affect the mechanical brakes as such. Despite being fixed within minutes, Top Gear claimed that they had no car to review anymore.

There were a couple of minor other things in the review, but basically that's the bottom line. They went far beyond the "natural disadvantages" of an EV such as the Tesla Roadster by fabricating footage and clearly taking things out of context.

Pretty much agree with the Interceptor


EDIT Actually, no. I re-read his message and he says the opposite of what I am saying, damn fast reading! END EDIT

If you take notice of what Tesla wrote, much becomes clearer:

1)The first Tesla shown did not run out of charge.
and
2)The first Testla shown did not have to be pushed into the hangar as a result of running out of charge.

They seem to contest TG, but now imagine what if the car indicators went to zero after 55 miles (just to say the first digit that came to mind...) but the vehicle reached the hangar by itself and didn't have to be pushed.

TG didn't lie but Tesla hasn't said anything false. They are both right. Ah, how subtle logic is!

3)At no point were the brakes of the first roadster broken.

Again, imagine what if the car had some electric problem with the brake system and the car went in safe mode. The brakes aren't broken. Still, TG hasn't lied.

4)The second Roadster did not become immobile as a result of overheating.

Which means that if it was in safe-mode (thus still moving, however slowly) Tesla is yet again not stating anything false, and TG has still not lied.

5)There was no time at which neither Roadster was available to drive.

So if the problems appeared on one car while the other was available for driving, instead of together, is the Tesla less prone to failures?

---

Tesla seems to have chosen their words pretty accurately. If TG was really lying, why hasn't Tesla said something like "Tesla number 1 was stopped much before it run out of charge", or "Tesla 1 had no brake problem at all", or "Tesla 2 never overheated"?

I am curious to see how things will end, but I really want to bet 1 cent on what happened: Tesla number 1 had to be stopped for recharging (not pushed) after less than 60 miles of track driving, and during that time the brakes' heat hit hard on the electronics, which went a bit crazy. Nothing major, but annoying. Tesla number 2 had overheating problems that never stopped the car. The car was stopped as a precaution to avoid damaging it. And yes, at no point both Teslas were unusable, but that argument is ridiculous.
 
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MacGuffin

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Funny thing is: this conclusion is perfectly fine. The Tesla Roadster performs marginally better in some regards than an Elise, it is much more expensive and much less practical than an Elise. If they had said that on the show, I don't think we'd have this discussion here and now. The point is that they didn't, but instead flat out lied and now say that they pretty much had to to get their point across.

I mean what did they show in this piece? That the car will do a couple of miles and then either run out of juice so you have to push it, or break so you have to push it. That is pure bullshit, and Tesla is calling them out on it.
I really do not understand your reasoning.

Do you mean they lied, because they showed, how they pushed the car back into the garage? I wouldn't call that a lie. Maybe deliberate exaggeration to show what could happen.

Or what exactly do you believe they lied about?

But even if you take everything they said or showed, absolutely literal and for granted (which you shouldn't, knowing Top Gear), it's hard to see anything else in the Tesla film, than a subjective, maybe little biased review, which quite correctly summons up the pros and cons of the Tesla Roadster.

And I think it is responsible consumer advice to show, that this Tesla Roadster, which had been celebrated enthusiastically almost without any criticism on a wave of eco-friendly ideology, is NOT the solution for our future, is NOT a valid subsitute for a petrol-fueled roadster but just a very expensive and hugely impractical toy for rich people, who want to BUY themselves a clean eco-consciousness.

So I really don't see, what all the fuzz is about.
 
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the Interceptor

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I really do not understand your reasoning.

Do you mean they lied, because they showed, how they pushed the car back into the garage? I wouldn't call that a lie. Maybe deliberate exaggeration to show what could happen.
Sorry, are you joking? They were showing the car being pushed into the hangar. Does the fact that they didn't literally spell out that it "had to be pushed" mean that these pictures were not lying about what really happened?

Or what exactly do you believe they lied about?
That, and that there was a situation when they were without any of the two cars to use. There was much more, but more or less minor.

But even if you take everything they said or showed, absolutely literal and for granted (which you shouldn't, knowing Top Gear), it's hard to see anything else in the Tesla film, than a subjective, maybe little biased review, which quite correctly summons up the pros and cons of the Tesla Roadster.
It doesn't. They exaggerated the shortcomings of the EV and even fabricated cases to demonstrate its downsides. A "biased review" is something completely different. You do a biased review when you forget the upsides and keep talking about the downsides. The moment you start to come up with things that didn't actually happen to make your case, you're not reviewing anymore, you're lying.

There are cases when you feel the need to lie during a review because what you want to show doesn't really come across if you're truthful, I give you that. However, when you push a car that can still drive on its own because "it could happen", you go two steps too far.

In another thread, I once calculated the performance of the Ferrari 599 on Top Gear. The Italians claim it will do 306 miles on its 23 gallon tank. According to the supercar efficiency race in TG 11x01, the car would run out of fuel after 39.1 miles on the TG test track. When was the last time they pushed a Ferrari into a hangar to show what could happen to you if you bought one and drove it hard? The 599 doesn't even go into limp-mode like the Tesla, it would simply stop. And still, they're raving about the 599 and pushing the Tesla around to make a point.

And I think it is responsible consumer advice to show, that this Tesla Roadster, which had been celebrated enthusiastically almost without any criticism on a wave of eco-friendly ideology, is NOT the solution for our future, is NOT a valid subsitute for a petrol-fueled roadster but just a very expensive and hugely impractical toy for rich people, who want to BUY themselves a clean eco-consciousness.
That is true. But that wasn't their verdict, nor was it shown like this on the show.
 
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