Would you ride a motorcycle made from toys around the Isle of Man? James May is going to

hard can top gears james may ride toy bike around isle man meccano
This bike made from toys is going to take Top Gear's James May on a 37 mile trip around the Isle of Man.

How hard could it be to build a motorcycle out of Meccano toys and then drive it around Britain’s Isle of Man?

Well, Top Gear’s James May is going to try and find out. 

When not producing the world’s best motoring show, Mr. May hosts a series called Toy Stories that builds incredible things from toys as well as exploring their histories. Last year the folks at Toy Stories built a functioning bridge out of Meccano for their Christmas Special. This year they are even more ambitious. 

For those of you who don’t know – in fact I had to look it up myself – Meccano is actually the original name for “Erector Set” and the ones we get in the U.S. are actually made my Meccano of France. The more you know! 

The motorcycle is built entirely from the toy, including, it seems, the propulsion. This is particularly impressive when you consider that the bike and sidecar must be able to carry two adults at speeds of 15 mph over a 37-mile course. In fact the course is the same TT course that motorcycle GT races are held on. That means that the toy motorbike has got to be able to handle steep hills and tough turns. 

Fortunately for May and his head engineer Simon Oakley, they aren’t trying to make the trip in one go. According to ToyNews, May plans to make the trip over three days. Presumably, they went with an extended because the basic mechanical drive will need to be wound up, or something similar, fairly frequently. 

We won’t know whether or not May and the Meccano bike managed its trip around the Isle of Man until the special airs this Christmas. But given Top Gear‘s history of challenges, I am not all that optimistic. 

Product Review

‘Just Cause 4’ is mindless fun that leaves little room for much else

Just Cause 4 revels in explosions and over-the-top action, but its world feels empty and hollow. With few new ideas and a stale open world, it's a fun but shallow piece of escapism.
Home Theater

The best Dolby Atmos movies for your home theater sound as good as they look

If you've got your hands on some sweet Dolby Atmos gear, the next step is to find films that take advantage of it. These are our picks in every genre for the best Dolby Atmos movies currently available on Blu-ray and streaming services.

Jam out in style with the 25 best playlists on Spotify

Music is the world's most potent drug, and the best playlists on Spotify will make you catch feelings. We've scoured the service for its top collections, and brought them together in one place -- for you.

Check out the best Xbox One deals and bundles for December 2018

Microsoft's consoles are just as capable of streaming movies as they are of playing the latest games. Check out our top Xbox One deals and bundles, which include new and upcoming triple-A games like Battlefield V and Fallout 76.

These winter-warrior cars will never leave you out in the cold

Snow can be an absolute pain if your vehicle isn't optimized to handle that sort of terrain. If brutal snowstorms are an annual part of your life, we recommend you pick up one of these winter-ready vehicles.

2020 Toyota Supra caught hiding in a trailer without a shred of camouflage

Toyota's plan to once again lure enthusiasts into showrooms involves bringing back the Supra, one of its most emblematic nameplates. Here's what we know so far about the upcoming coupe, which Toyota is developing jointly with BMW.

Driving a prototype 2020 Passat at Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground

Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground is where new cars are tested to the breaking point, including the 2020 Passat midsize sedan. Ride along as the new Passat completes testing ahead of its 2019 launch.

NYC mandates minimum wage for Uber, Lyft, other app-based rideshare drivers

New York City's Taxi and Limousine Commission approved a rule that drivers for companies such as Uber and Lyft must be paid at least minimum wage, even though they are independent contractors. The new pay rate includes operating costs.

LM Industries’ autonomous shuttles head to Phoenix, Sacramento campuses

LM Industries will deploy Olli low-speed autonomous shuttles at school campuses in Arizona and California as part of its ongoing "fleet challenge," which asks local groups to propose uses for autonomous vehicles.

Bosch’s CES-bound shuttle concept takes us on a trip to a not-too-distant future

Bosch envisions a future in which driverless shuttles occupy their own market segment. The German firm won't build the shuttles, but it wants to provide everything else, ranging from the drive system to the apps used to hail them.
Emerging Tech

A lidar-equipped truck knows exactly how much de-icer to apply on roads

Lidar is best known as the laser-based technology that helps self-driving cars sense their surroundings. But the city of Knoxville has another, more seasonal use for it: De-icing roads.
Product Review

Boring takes a back seat as 2019 Corolla Hatchback mixes fun with practicality

We drive the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback, the latest hatchback to bear the Corolla name. As the best-selling nameplate in automotive history, Toyota has high expectations to meet. This model mostly lives up to the legacy.

Hertz speeds up car rentals with biometric scan technology

Biometric security technology that uses face, fingerprint, and voice recognition is gaining traction, with Hertz emerging as the latest company to incorporate it into its daily operations.
Product Review

Inside Maserati's Levante SUV beats the heart of a Ferrari

Maserati’s luxury SUV gets a shot in the arm by way of Ferrari-derived V8 power, but is it enough to go toe-to-toe with the established players in the high performance sport-utility segment? Let’s find out.