Beyond Top Gear Lies Motoring Journalism

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STEVE CROPLEY, editor-in-chief of Haymarket’s Autocar and motoring journalist of the year, presented his views on the industry and its critics today at Coventry Conversations. Writes Teo Beleaga

He argued that Top Gear was bold enough to put itself in front of an audience that had no previous knowledge about cars, Steve Cropley said: “Top Gear is a phenomenon, but it is not really news, it’s entertainment”

One of the rules of journalism says not to be a personality, but a medium through which news flows. “The personalities are important in Top Gear,” said Cropley, “but that didn’t affect us at all”. On the contrary, an audience that is interested in more than just car entertainment will go for the expert reviews from Autocar.

Cropley said: “Our circulations are not particularly dropping, we have loyal consumers”

According to Steve there is sheer permanent competition and a taught market out there as “journalism is not particularly gentle with people who don’t do it well”. Although it is “the most brilliant occupation” journalism and motoring journalism in particular, “requires an unusual attention to detail; ability to observe the ordinary things and see something in them” said Cropley.

Feature Writer of the Year and Journalist Writer of the Year, Cropley comments modestly on receiving the awards: “It took me by surprise, but you know it feels good”

Listen to the Steve Cropley Coventry Conversation.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Beyond Top Gear Lies Motoring Journalism

  1. Be interesting to see how Top Gear returns for the next season. Andy Willman has gone on record to say that the last series lost somewhat lost direction and was hastily put together.

    Will it return to a more petrolhead style, or keep to general entertainment?

    My hunch is the latter, leaving Fifth Gear to grow into the space left by Top Gear. More power to Tom, Jonny, Tiff and Vicki.

  2. Top Gear returns June 27th. I cant wait!

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