There are a few key ingredients which are essential if you want to make a successful TV motoring series; an interesting and unique format (to distinguish it from all of the other car shows on the small screen) along with an entertaining and well-informed team of hosts driving or renovating stunning vehicles.
However, some motoring TV shows which seem to tick all those boxes have been ruined because of creative differences between members of the cast – or to be more accurate, blazing rows and simmering feuds between members of the cast!
While some feuds can be destructive, some have managed to make the TV shows more interesting and entertaining, and producers have even been accused of scripting arguments in order to boost the viewing figures.
20 Ruined - Aaron Kaufman Leaving Fast N' Loud Took Away The Show's Creative Heart
Aaron Kaufman had been Richard Rawlings’ right-hand man at the Gas Monkey Garage, which featured on the Discovery Channel series Fast N’ Loud. However, Kaufman and Rawlings disagreed over many of the choices made on the show, leading to Kaufmann quitting Fast N’ Loud and the Gas Monkey Garage itself.
19 Ruined - Fast N' Loud Also Lost Tom Smith And Jordan Butler Because Of A Feud
Fast N’ Loud had an alarming tendency to lose members of staff – and most of the time the reason was Richard Rawlings’ hard-handed managerial style. As well as Kaufman, two other key members of the Gas Monkey Garage crew, Tom Smith and Jordan Butler, left because they could no longer work with Rawlings.
18 Ruined - Counting Cars Star Scott Jones Disappeared Without Explanation From The Series
The History Channel’s Counting Cars was another motoring renovation show which featured a domineering boss. Danny Koker, the owner of Kount’s Kustoms repair shop in Las Vegas, managed to upset several of his employees, including Scott Jones who just disappeared from the series in season three amid rumors that he had embezzled money from the firm.
17 Ruined - Paul Jr Walked Out Of His Father's Garage On American Chopper
Perhaps the most famous feud in motoring television is the rocky relationship between the father and son team on the Discovery Channel’s American Chopper. Paul Teutul Sr and his son, also named Paul, used to have blazing rows in front of the cameras, which eventually led to Paul Jr waking away from the family business.
16 Ruined - Prickly Relationship Between The Top Gear Presenters Led To Their Dismissal
The Top Gear trio of Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond made the show one of the most successful car TV shows of all time. Part of their charm was their on-screen rivalry, but this eventually contributed to their downfall, as their on-screen banter led to an off-screen atmosphere which offended members of the crew.
15 Ruined - Drivers On Street Outlaws Were Seriously Injured As A Result Of Their On-Road Rivalry
Street Outlaws was one of the most controversial TV motoring shows, with ex-street racers renovating cars and then racing them against each other. Old rivalries from their street racing days led to two of the show’s stars, Justin “Big Chief” Shearer and Brian “Chucky” Davis being seriously injured in an on-screen collision.
14 Ruined - A Lot Of Staff Have Walked Off The Set Of Misfit Garage Over The Years Due To Disputes
Misfit Garage was itself a spin-off from the always controversial Fast N’ Loud, and it very much continued in the same vein as the original show. Several members of the team at the Fired Up Garage featured on the show quit over the years, mostly because of creative differences with the rest of the team.
13 Ruined - Original Top Gear Team Were Even Accused Of Making Racist And Sexist Statements
The Top Gear team might have allowed laddish banter to set the tone on their show, but there were several occasions on which even they went too far, with the presenters accused of using racist and sexist language. The final straw was when Clarkson allegedly hit a producer, which led to his dismissal, followed by the resignation of his co-stars.
12 Ruined - Edd China Left Wheeler Dealers Over Fears The Network Was Interfering In The Show
At first glance, Wheeler Dealers seemed like the least likely motoring TV show to be plagued by feuds. This mild-mannered car renovation show lost its main mechanic in 2017, however, when Edd China quit over his concerns that the network was starting to interfere with the way the show was made.
11 Ruined - The Team At Gas Monkey Garage Have A Rocky Relationship With Their Partner, ASM Upholstery
Car renovations shows may focus on the way the outside of the car looks, but it is just as important that the interiors of the vehicles are improved too. Most garages work with local companies, and the team on Fast N’ Loud are no exception; unfortunately, they have a bit of a love/hate relationship with their local partner, ASM Upholstery.
10 Saved - Kaufman Got To Star In His Own Show, Shifting Gears
Andy Kaufman may have turned his back on Fast N’ Loud, Gas Monkey Garage and his old mentor, Richard Rawlings, but this was one feud which had benefits for both Kaufman, who got to set up his own shop, and for TV viewers, who were able to enjoy new motoring TV show Shifting Gears, featuring Kaufman’s creative cars.
9 Saved - Arianny Celeste's UFC Feud With Ronda Rousey Made Overhaulin' More Popular
The feud which saved TLC’s car renovation Overhaulin’ wasn’t on the show itself at all but was between one of the show’s presenters and UFC star Ronda Rousey. Overhaulin’ star Arianny Celeste was one of the presenters on Overhaulin’ and her long-running rivalry with Rousey ensured that the show was always in the headlines.
8 Saved - After Leaving American Chopper, Paul Jr Was Able To Set Up His Own Shop And His Own Show
Paul Teutul Jr may have had a tumultuous relationship with his father on their show American Chopper, but when the feud finally got too much for him and he walked off the show, he used the opportunity to set up his own garage – and later returned to the show to take on his old man in a series of challenges.
7 Saved - Matt LeBlanc Feud With Chris Evans Led To A Change For The Better On Top Gear
When Top Gear had to look for new presenters they first turned to radio DJ Chris Evans and former Friends star Matt LeBlanc. However, the two didn’t work well together, and their on-set issues led to Evans leaving after just one series. Luckily for Top Gear fans, this meant that the show soon found better stars to work alongside LeBlanc.
6 Saved - A Blazing Row Between Paul Jr And Paul Sr On American Chopper Became A Popular Meme!
The old saying goes that there is no such thing as bad publicity, and that was certainly the case for the Teutul boys and their American Chopper feud. One of their most outlandish arguments has become a widespread meme, provoking interest in the show from the kind of people who wouldn’t normally watch motoring shows.
5 Saved - The Counting Cars Crew Hate Rocker Vince Neil - A Good Friend Of Their Boss Danny Koker
Danny Koker, star of Counting Cars is something of a wannabe rock star, and one of his good friends is Motley Crue singer Vince Neil. Neil has even appeared on the show a few times, despite the fact that many of the Counts Kustoms team dislike Neil because of his domestic violence charges.
4 Saved - Jesse James Of Monster Garage Admitted To Cheating On His Movie Star Wife
When it comes to the most hated man in motoring TV, Jesse James of the Discovery Channel series Monster Garage has to be one of the main contenders. He married Hollywood star Sandra Bullock, which raised his profile, and was in the gossip pages for months when he admitted to having cheated on the Oscar-winning actress.
3 Saved - Smith And Butler Set Up Their Own Garage And Their Own Show, Misfit Garage
Like Andy Kaufman, former Fast N’ Loud stars Tom Smith and Jordan Butler also used their feud with Richard Rawlings at Gas Monkey Garage to set up on their own – and even got their own TV series, Misfit Garage. Great news for motoring fans who want to see more car tv shows on the small screen.
2 Saved - Richard Rawlings Even Makes Guest Appearances On Misfit Garage, Despite The "Feud"
The feud between Richard Rawlings may be real, but that doesn’t stop the Discovery Channel, which makes both Fast N’ Loud and Misfit Garage, from using it to boost viewing figures. Despite Misfit Garage being a spin-off from the original series, Rawlings regularly makes guest appearances on the show, fronted by his disgruntled ex-employees.
1 Saved - Street Outlaws Has A Long-Running Feud With The NHRA
Some feuds are more significant than others when it comes to car TV shows. Street Outlaws, for example, features former illegal street racers renovating cars for racing – despite the fact that they have been sent several cease and desist letters by the official drag racing organization in the USA, the National Hot Rod Association.
Sources: Top Speed, Road and Truck, Art of Gears, TMZ, NY Times