Although reality TV doesn’t appeal to everyone, some of its best qualities are its ability to transmit useful information to enthusiasts in a given area. Those who are looking to step up their game in a given field and become more knowledgeable practitioners, buyers, or sellers can benefit to a surprising degree from the best reality TV shows. And nowhere is this truer than in the realm of cars.

With this in mind, we wanted to take a look at some of the best car shows available today and see what an automotive enthusiast may gain from watching.

Top Gear

Top Gear is one of the oldest and most venerable car shows on TV. The show started in England, with an all-star cast including the hilarious and informative Jeremy Clarkson. The show, many episodes of which can readily be found on YouTube, has reviewed almost every car imaginable that has been built since its first episode aired in 2002. Top Gear also features the mysterious and ferociously aggressive test driver The Stig, who is rumored to be one of racing’s all-time greatest drivers. But beyond being merely entertaining, the brutal punishments and head-to-head comparisons that Top Gear puts its cars through impart solid information to prospective buyers. If you are thinking of buying a new car, looking for its corresponding Top Gear episode is one of the best places to start researching. It’s always time well spent.

Top Gear also has an equally impressive American version with a different cast that focuses more on American automakers.

Pawn Stars

While Pawn Stars is not a car show per se, many of its episodes feature cars. It was also the debut for Danny “The Count” Koker, who now has another excellent car program that has spun off from Pawn Stars, Counting Cars.

The reason Pawn Stars gets a mention is because both Chris Harrison and his father Rick are some of the most knowledgeable car people on television. Their insights and those of the experts they bring in can help anyone learn to be better negotiators on car deals and to recognize bad deals before they have a chance to materialize.

Jay Leno’s Garage

For those interested in classic cars, Jay Leno’s Garage may be the best show on television. Aside from being a famous talk show host, Jay Leno is one of the most prolific collectors of classic cars in America. Each episode features another vehicle from his garage and interesting background stories surrounding it.