In a survey of over 3,000 people conducted by The Car People, the UK’s favourite driving films have been compiled into a conclusive top 10 – and the winner might surprise you.
The votes were close, with the winner receiving 26%, and the runners up receiving 20% and 15% respectively.
10. Drive (2011)
Sexy Ryan Gosling plays the Hollywood-stuntman-turned-getaway-driver is this cult favourite. Known for its ultraviolent action, the film received a slew of accolades, although box office receipts were inevitably held back by the film’s 18 rating. While preparing for his role, Gosling actually restored the 1973 Chevy Malibu from the film himself.
9. Rush (2013)
Another film featuring a smouldering hunk behind the wheel of a fast car, Rush is a biopic about the real-life rivalry between drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda. Neither Daniel Brühl nor Chris Hemsworth were permitted to actually drive real Formula 1 cars for the film. They had to pretend with Formula 3 cars done up with fake F1 bodywork.
8. Days of Thunder (1990)
It’s hard to believe Tom Cruise used to be attractive! Now we just remember him as that bright-toothed Scientology guy. This film charts the friendship of two NASCAR rivals who find they’re both side-lined with injuries. Days of Thunder stars Tom Cruise, who got a speeding ticket for doing 85mph in a 55mph zone during filming – presumably because he was still in-character.
7. Taxi (1998)
Let’s forget about the silly remake: the original French action-comedy film was written by Luc Besson (who also made the riotously camp space opera, The Fifth Element) in just a month. Interesting fact: the racing helmet worn by Daniel at the end of the movie actually belonged to French F1 driver Olivier Panis.
6. Bullitt (1968)
Featuring one of the most famous car chases ever filmed, the two competing vehicles in this Steve McQueen film apparently reached speeds in excess of 110mph while recording the scene (which ran for almost 11 minutes).
5. Cars (2006)
Who doesn’t love Cars? This friendly animated movie featured characters who are all based on real-life vehicles – Ramone is a 1959 Chevrolet Impala, for instance, while Luigi is a 1959 Fiat 500.
4. Speed (1994)
Sandra Bullock had to appear in this list somewhere! In Speed she stars alongside Keanu Reeves, back when he knew how to move his face. Speed was a huge hit, taking over $350 million at the box office, and used 12 different buses during filming. Bullock had to to actually pass her bus driving test so that she could do the film – and that makes us love her even more!
3. The Fast and the Furious series (2001-present)
This is a bit of a cop-out, really, as if the films only got 15% between them, not one of them would get enough to make it into the top 3. Perhaps The Car People should have left it out? Let’s face it, there was only one good thing about The Fast and the Furious franchise: the eye candy.
2. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968)
Did you know there were seven different Chitties? It kinda makes him seem a little less special now, doesn’t it? Apparently not, though, because DJ Chris Evans reportedly paid nearly £500,000 for one of the cars back in 2012. ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang we love you!’
1. The Italian Job (1969)
BMC actually refused to donate any Minis for the filming of The Italian Job, despite the fact the film has a rather iconic scene featuring not just one but three of them. The makers of the car are probably laughing even now, because The Italian Job remains Brits’ number one fave. And the catchphrase, ‘You’re only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!’, was voted the most memorable in any film back in 2003.
Interesting trivia: Michael Caine doesn’t actually drive a car at all during the film. He hadn’t actually passed his test!
Survey and research by thecarpeople.co.uk.