The 2010 Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Trailer Is Still the Greatest Car Video of All Time

Screenshot: Electronic Arts

The 2010 Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit game is like Marvel-movie-meets-driving. It’s relentlessly paced, oversaturated and completely over the top. The trailer takes that and packages it with a perfect escalation of intensity and eight years later, I still get hyped watching it.

2010 is too recent-past to be nostalgic for, but we can try: “TiK ToK” was the number one Billboard song. Everybody was obsessed with Avatar. And a social element powered by the internet was still a somewhat novel concept for console video games.


But don’t let my pontificating get in the way of you enjoying this clip. Let go of your self-consciousness, turn your headphones up, and full-screen it. Then come back and we’ll talk about what you just witnessed.

Illustration for article titled The 2010 Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Trailer Is Still the Greatest Car Video of All Time
Screenshot: Electronic Arts

Still pretty sweet, right?

The burbling intro. God, there is just nothing cooler-sounding and more suspenseful than crackly radio transmissions over an ominous soundtrack.

The layered drop. Oh, look, a cool winding road. Bang. Bang. I’m intrigued. BANG. BANG. I’M SHOOK.

By the time the actual action starts, we’re already running flat out. And whatever your thoughts may be on Marilyn Manson, you can’t deny that this redux of “Tainted Love” sounds like it was made for this.


You only have enough time to realize that a badass police chase is going down when the next reveal happens: Is that a Bugatti cop car?

Seconds later we get another reveal. Now there are more race cars and we’re in some sort of high-speed red rover situation. Suddenly it’s a three-way conflict, and the stakes are immediately raised again when the helicopter shows up.


At this point the video lets us step back and appreciate the scale what’s happening: exotic sports cars, exotic police cars, pretty much just trying to murder each other in a dizzyingly colorful environment... and just when it looks like we’re going to fade out, we get one more reveal as a Lamborghini “king” cop car struts into frame and establishes the presence of a formidable enemy.

Hot damn, that’s some good visual storytelling.

Jalopnik Staffer from 2013 to 2020, now Editor-In-Chief at Car Bibles


8Ringer (irrational hater of Subaru)

I’m going to take the wayback machine even farther and suggest that NFS: Porsche Unleashed is the best NFS game ever made. Though NFS2SE was pretty awesome, I remember lapping one track ove rand over and over trying to figure out if the GT90 was faster than the McLaren F1 (it wasn’t) and then another track trying to max out the F1.

The graphics were utter garbage but at the time, hammering the arrow keys to steer and drive (for lack of analog inputs) was the real skill.