Rob Ellingham, Creative Director SMP reviewed the new Top Gear website in Marketing Magazine, 3rd December 2008. Looks like he likes it!
“At last, a great virtual ‘man’s world’ is launched. The dynamic Top Gear website is a fusion of the magazine and TV show with a ‘blokier’ edge.
On entering the site, I was puzzled by the rustic backdrop. Is it a pub wall or an old fashioned radio? Whichever, it has a great retro feel.
Continue to browse, however, and you find a contrasting, slick carbon fibre look that is every inch 21st century and symbolic of performance and style.The site’s fresh image, colourful design and rich content gives it a magazine-like flow. However, the navigation can be tricky, with sub-headers within headers creating a complex, multi-layered experience.
In terms of features, the Car Chooser is attractive, sexy and simple to use. Its mechanism is also fun and playful, yet not too geeky to appeal to a mass audience.
However, the absence of the strong personalities of Clarkson and Hammond is disappointing, and the number of ads competing with the videos for my attention created a commercially dominated user experience.
Overall, the site is impressive, although most of the content fails to live up to the homepage. That said, it smartly outstrips rival site Fifth Gear on every count.”