Monday, November 8, 2010


John Marine | 11/08/2010 01:35:00 AM | | | |
MotorWeek is Television's Original Automotive Magazine. The 2010-2011 season of MotorWeek is the 30th season for this greatly acclaimed weekly show. Even well before the likes of Fast Lane Daily online, MotorWeek has been the show combining automotive news, segments, car care advice, and more. I've had the pleasure of first seeing MotorWeek either back in 1997 or 1998. I've tried every Sunday morning to watch Channel 8 here in Houston (KUHT Channel 8 is Houston's PBS affiliate) at 11:00 AM. That is, if I'm not hung over after Saturday nights. Maryland Public Television produces MotorWeek, and MotorWeek is based in Owings Mills, Maryland, USA (meaning they represent the greater Baltimore area).

This blog post is my personal salute to MotorWeek. And I quote:

" come drive with us, next!"
- John Davis,
MotorWeek host

--- MotorWeek at a Glance ---
^ from:, by way of - MotorWeek, with host John Davis.

For one thing, I think everything on MotorWeek is expressed professionally and with class. Just most of the bare facts and figures on cars is expressed on this show. The information on each featured car is done so well to me. Maybe some would think they don't exploit on and attack the negatives of cars too much, but just the bare essentials is covered very well. When certain aspects of car performance are featured, they are usually featured at two different tracks. The drag strip they race on is 75-80 Dragway in Monrovia, Maryland, USA; which they've used for just about every season of MotorWeek. The road course they usually race on is Roebling Roads Raceway in Bloomingdale, Georgia, USA.

Road Test, On the Track, and Others.

I think John Davis is an excellent host for the show. In fact, he's been around for just about all 30 seasons. Trying to replace him would be like trying to replace Joe Paterno at Pennsylvania State (Penn State, of course). He provides great comments on cars featured as well as in covering certain automotive segments. Sometimes, MotorWeek has Road Test segments that actually are certain comparison segments. Certain other Road Tests are done exclusively on track. A look at the car's styling is featured in every Road Test segment consisting of exterior and interior style.

The base part of each Road Test is in the performance figures of each car. The performance portion consists of a look at 0-60 mph time followed by a quarter-mile recording. The drag strip section is followed by notes on the performance characteristics while accelerating. Next is a look at how the car handles in a slalom test. Some cars may be featured in a high-speed slalom test as well. To conclude the performance tests, a look at stops from 60 mph to 0 is featured. Again, notes on the braking performance is featured afterwards.

After each performance test, you get a look at the car's other features. These include aspects such as mileage numbers, government fuel economy ratings, barrels of oils consumed per year, carbon footprint, and more. Afterwards, you get a look at the price for the car as well as for other trim levels for the car. Almost all the basics you need to know about the car is featured in each Road Test.

Final thoughts are supplemented afterwards.

Goss' Garage.

Each week, Pat Goss supplements his car care advice based on what people mail to him about. Pat Goss explains things in great detail and with true professionalism. He knows what he's talking about and confidently gives advice. Almost as if he is a professor, and we are all his students.

Extra Segments.

The kind of extra segments vary. Some are FYI segments featuring a digest of information that you should know in regards to the automotive world. Some segments are all about going Over the Edge. The Over the Edge series features some wacky and unique automobile and racing segments. Rather than cars, there's also a Two-Wheeling segment where MotorWeek's features on cars gives way to two-wheel machines. With AutoWorld, there is usually a great focus on certain cars at major auto shows as well as certain other pressing issues in the automotive world. Another segment is on Car Keys, featuring a first-look at upcoming automobiles.

Long-Term Road Test Update.

MotorWeek is also known for its Long-Term Road Test Updates. This is where the MotorWeek crew gets certain automobiles and provides a one-year (or usually up to one year) with a certain car. Aspects about each car's endurance and quality are mentioned in each long-term test. This is a barometer to determine just how well a car performs even weeks and months since first getting it. Consider it a longevity test conducted by MotorWeek.


Sometimes, MotorNews is featured. I forget who did the ones in the late 1990s and early 2000 (I know there were two different ladies named Lindsey), but the one who's covered MotorNews in recent years is Jessica Choksey. These MotorNews segments are a brief look at automotive news including statistics, possible new innovations, and things like that.

MotorWeek Driver's Choice Awards.

Each year, MotorWeek highlights on cars in various categories as being the best of the year. Cars are divided into many categories as the MotorWeek crew helps commend the best automobiles from the past year. Categories range in various car categories, dream cars, and things like that.

I can say that when you want to see a quality and well-done look at automobiles on American television, you can be assured that watching MotorWeek is worth your time. Besides various segments, they sometimes show you certain books worth reading in case you love cars and books.

--- MotorWeek Preview ---
Let me provide you some YouTube videos to give you a preview of what MotorWeek offers weekly. Have a look at these videos to see how MotorWeek covers cars and other things:

Road Test Demo.

^ MotorWeek segment from 2009 testing the Suzuki Kizashi. (FYI: I did a "Car Style" blog post on this car. You can read my blog entry called "Car Style - The Suzuki Kizashi" to find out how I feel about this car's looks.)

Car Keys Demo.

^ "Car Keys" segment on the 2011 Audi R8 Spyder.

^ "AutoWorld" segment regarding Clean Air Challenges.

Here is a bonus video... some old-school MotorWeek:

^ "Road Test" of the 1990 Chevrolet Beretta GTZ. From MotorWeek '90 (their 9th or 10th season).

You can also visit MotorWeek's YouTube channel for more videos from MotorWeek on YouTube.

--- What I Would Tell MotorWeek if They Read This ---
For as long as I've been into cars, this was the one program I could watch on TV and enjoy watching as a car fan. Everything is professional and insightful. You've done this for the past 29 seasons, and this 30th season is likely as great as any past season of MotorWeek. I salute the entire crew who has helped to keep MotorWeek being the successful car program for three decades. This includes everyone from on-air personalities (like John Davis, Pat Goss, Jessica Choksey, Yolanda Vasquez, Stephen Chupnick, and countless others both past and present) to all of the behind-the-scenes people. Thank you for providing such a great show for which I can proudly wake up on Sunday mornings to watch for some 13 years (for me).

If my blog post on MotorWeek is somehow read by the MotorWeek crew, you have my full respect for all you do. Keep up the great work for years (and maybe decades) to come.

Needless to say, MotorWeek IS "Television's Original Automotive Magazine." It may also be the ONLY weekly automotive show consistently and constantly providing great insight on cars. This show has been around much longer than most other car shows and is still on the air to this day. Okay. It may not have the personality of "Car and Driver TV" back when Spike TV used to be TNN (The Nashville Network, followed by being "The National Network.") aired this show. It may not have automotive news followed with great humor like Fast Lane Daily on YouTube. It may not be a world-renowned program like "Top Gear." It may be too boring for today's YouTube-driven folk. But for American TV and for fans of automobiles, this is Old Reliable in providing quality episodes highlighting on the automobile industry and the many cars, trucks, and various other automobiles. MotorWeek to automotive programming is like The Simpsons in terms of longevity and endurance. You may have your favorite automotive programming (assuming it isn't MotorWeek), but before any other show or series was cool, there was MotorWeek. This show has now been around for three decades and only gets better. It is a TV fixture that has surpassed the test of time.

For More Information...

For more information about MotorWeek, please visit MotorWeek's official home page or their alternative site at MotorWeek's PBS home page. You can also Like/Become a Fan of MotorWeek on Facebook, visit MotorWeek's YouTube channel, and even Follow MotorWeek on Twitter.

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