I don't usually watch Top Gear, BBC's flawed, outdated - but incredibly popular - car-hugging TV show. But when they raced across Japan from Kyoto, past Mt Fuji, through the not so crowded highways in Tokyo, to Mt Nokogiri in Chiba prefecture, I just had to watch: Jeremy Clarkson in a Nissan GT-R racing without a thought about CO2 emissions against Hammond and May taking public transit: the 700 Shinkansen, local trains, a ferry and the A-Bike. Nissan of course is not immune to the current crisis: japancarblog.com has photos of unsold Micras at their factory test track (below the fold). Jeremy Clarkson, god bless him, (hello? this is the 2000s) never cared about such things. And with public television like that, of course, is how Britain lost their empire, and London became known as the Reykjavik-On-Thames.
A-Bike posted the video above on Youtube, thanks!
(Photo of unsold Nissan Micra from japancarblog.com)
The race through Japan's countryside is filmed beautifully, and I enjoyed the silly jokes. On some car forums, people are upset about the cultural slights but hey, the British were never known for their tact, only for their sense of humour. Jeremy Clarkson also shows a real human side when his in-car navigation system fails. Have you ever seen him that close to a heart attack?
(Photo from pbase.com)
The goal is this temple dedicated to road safety, with Japan's largest Buddha statue. Yes, both teams make it, and I will not spoil your weekend fun by telling you who won (by 3 minutes, that is).
Click here for Neil Duckett's blog, with high quality videos of the entire show.
Brought to you by Martin Frid at greenz.jp