In a plot to obtain a Cybertronian weather-controlling device, the Decepticons stage a fake race across Europe.
Megatron is looking for the Pearl of Bahoudin, and goes on a rampage through Istanbul to find the one person who knows where it is. After interrogating the sage Abdul Ben Faisal, whom Megatron finds in Istanbul, and kidnapping archeologist Professor Terranova, Megatron finally zeros in on the location in the Galata Valley and has the Constructicons digging to retrieve it.
Meanwhile, the Europa 2000 is underway, and among the drivers in the race are the Autobots: Bluestreak, Bumblebee, Wheeljack, Sunstreaker, Sideswipe, Tracks, and Smokescreen. They are hoping to win the million dollar grand prize to give to charity. Also in the competition is Auggie Cahnay, America’s top driver, whose car is a custom design from Symultech. The engine is made of a new energy-resistant alloy, and (in Wheeljack's very own words) the Autobots have been instructed to keep an eye on Auggie per Optimus Prime's instructions, as his car may be a target for the Decepticons. This is easier said than done, as Auggie’s personality and driving style are both a bit uncouth, and it’s not long before he’s rubbing everyone the wrong way. At one point, Bumblebee literally has to yank him out of his car to criticize his behavior.
Aware of their proximity to the finish line, Megatron sends the Stunticons to take out the Autobots and steal Auggie’s car. Motormaster and his group successfully put everyone but Bluestreak, Bumblebee, and Tracks out of commission and make off with the vehicle. While trying to evade the Stunticons, Bluestreak stumbles across Professor Terranova, who snuck away from the Decepticon camp and now explains to him what Megatron is up to. The Pearl of Bahoudin is a powerful jewel that can cause "worldwide disaster". The three remaining Autobots regroup along with Auggie, who insists on going with them to get his car back. They speed through the finish line, winning the race, and keep going to the Decepticon camp.
Tracks, Bumblebee, and Bluestreak locate the Decepticons as Megatron finds the Pearl of Bahoudin. Megatron reveals to the Autobots that the content of the Pearl is, in fact, the power core of a weather satellite from Cybertron that crashed on Earth millions of years ago. Unearthed and exposed to the atmosphere in the 14th century, its power caused terrible storms that threatened to destroy the land until a Persian seer encased it in a golden, bejeweled shell. Using the parts from Auggie’s car, Megatron plans to build a device that will utilize the jewel’s power to control the elements and rain destruction down on anyone who stands in his way.
The Autobots are attacked, though Bumblebee snatches the Pearl from Megatron. Seeing that they are outnumbered and outgunned, Bumblebee opens the Pearl, releasing its power and causing a massive twister that scatters everyone. The Pearl core itself is sucked up and lost in the storm. Megatron orders a retreat, saying that they can watch from the safety of their home base while the Earth is destroyed from the core’s power. They leave behind Menasor, who proves to be more than a match for the three smaller Autobots. Auggie jumps in his car and takes off, seemingly to run away, but really to drive his car off a nearby cliff and into Menasor's head, delivering a crippling blow and knocking out the giant. Bumblebee has himself sucked up into the twister so that he can catch up with the Pearl. He finally scores a successful shot and destroys the jewel.
After things calm down, Bluestreak tells Bumblebee that he "sure saved the day", and Tracks concludes that Megatron must have set up the race from the beginning to snag Auggie’s car, meaning that there's no prize money for anyone. Auggie remarks that he should take the gold casing of the jewel as payment for his destroyed car, but instead gives it to Bumblebee to sell for charity, and bids the three Autobots farewell.
Original airdate: December 23, 1985
Production number: 700-59
Written by: David Wise
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
(Megatron and Soundwave smash their way into the sage's home)
Abdul Ben Faisal: "So, you've come at last."
Megatron: "You have five seconds to tell me the location of—"
Abdul Ben Faisal: "The Pearl of Bahoudin? I know."
Megatron: "If you know so much, then you know it would be unwise to refuse me."
Abdul Ben Faisal: "You have caused enough damage in Istanbul for one day. The legends say the Pearl is buried in the Galata Valley, near the Alibey River."
Megatron: "You have been wise to oblige me."
Abdul Ben Faisal: "Perhaps. But... once you have dug up the Pearl, you may not find it so easy to put back..."
-Warning duly noted Abdul... and ignored.
"There's only one charity I care about: ME! I want that million bucks!"
- —Auggie Cahnay, born to win
(Bumblebee yanks Auggie right out of his fancy car and holds him aloft.)
Bumblebee: "Listen, you! Didn't anybody ever tell you about fair play?"
Auggie Cahnay: "I'm gonna win that million bucks!"
Bluestreak: "Keep driving like that, and you won't live long enough to win it. Not that that would be any great tragedy, but some decent people might get hurt!"
(Bumblebee drops Auggie onto the ground.)
Auggie Cahnay: "I got a race to win!"
(Auggie jumps into his car and drives off.)
Bumblebee: "What a creep."
- —Bumblebee and Bluestreak totally road-rage the asshole Auggie Cahnay.
Auggie Cahnay: "So help me, if one more of those metal maniacs gets in my way..."
(Motormaster blocks Auggie's way, and Dead End pulls the human out of his car.)
Auggie Cahnay: "That does it, and I'm not takin' it anymore!"
Dead End: "That's right, 'cause we're taking your car."
- —Auggie Cahnay is car-jacked by Dead End.
"What's that? Something the Easter Bunny brought you?"
- —Tracks is unimpressed by Megatron's discovery of the pearl.
- This episode has the final appearances of Bluestreak, Smokescreen and Sunstreaker with spoken dialogue. From here on, all of their appearances are as silent cameos.
Animation and/or technical glitches
- Near the beginning of the episode, when Tracks reacts to Auggie Cahnay's objection, he is coloured vaguely like Sandstorm, a character who made his first appearance in Starscream's Ghost.
- As Bumblebee catches up to Wheeljack and the camera angle changes to an overhead shot, the crookedly drawn background of the road continually edges close to Wheeljack, then pulls back as the animation loops, creating the impression that the image is jerking back and forth.
- After running Bumblebee off the Road, Auggie can be seen driving through a pack of cars that has the sheer cliff face on the right side of the screen, despite having just driven on a road that had the cliff edge on the left side. Additionally, Wild Rider is visible in the pack of human-driven cars.
- The reversed cel and background problems continue as Auggie pulls away from the rest of the drivers, but are fixed as Bumblebee and Bluestreak catch up to Auggie.
- The map of Europe is, erm, very inaccurate.
- Reversed cel problems continue during Wheeljack and Motormaster's chase scene. When Wheeljack initially appears on the location, the Black Sea is on the left side of the screen as he drives up the road, but as the chase progresses, the sea is now on the right side of the screen, as if they had turned around during the chase or were driving on the opposite coastline.
- After Drag Strip pushes Auggie's car into Motormaster's trailer, as the trailer door closes, Drag Strip's Decepticon signal turns into a purple blob.
- When Scavenger picks up the Pearl's energy readings, Megatron's Decepticon signal is coloured red.
- When Bluestreak picks up Auggie from the side of the road, Professor Terranova is not present inside the Autobot. Yet when the Autobots arrive at the site of the Pearl's excavation, Terranova can be seen exiting Bluestreak along with Auggie.
- As Bluestreak jumps to avoid Breakdown, his chest is almost entirely black. Breakdown's Decepticon signal is coloured red.
- When Breakdown hits the cliff after missing Bluestreak, despite an explosion being animated, no sound is heard.
- Megatron's mouth doesn't move when Bumblebee grabs the Pearl right out of his hand. Of course, he doesn't try to stop Bumblebee from grabbing the Pearl, either.
- As Megatron and the other Decepticons chase after Bumblebee, Megatron's feet are coloured grey like the front of his legs.
- After Menasor tells the Autobots there's no escape for them, Bluestreak is colored like Prowl.
- After Menasor smashes the ground to stop Bumblebee from escaping with the Pearl, a large crack forms in the earth, yet it vanishes when Bumblebee reacts to the Pearl rolling away.
- When the Autobots react to Auggie's apparent escape, Bluestreak is animated while Tracks's voice is heard.
- When Auggie jumps from his car, he is not wearing his helmet, but it reappears after Menasor is defeated.
- Tracks' readout of the Stunticons misspells Wildrider's name as "Wird Rider".
- Auggie Cahnay is reputed to be the best driver in the US, and the implication is he's also one of the best drivers in the race, yet twice in the episode, he is seen having to barge his way through the pack from behind.
- Smokescreen and Tracks are able to recognise the Stunticons instantly for who they are, yet earlier, Sideswipe and Sunstreaker could not tell until Dead End transformed and fired on them.
- Despite Megatron claiming the Pearl of Bahoudin is the core of a Cybertronian weather-controlling machine, the flashback footage during his exposition shows a Decepticon starship similar to his own flagship, the Nemesis from "More Than Meets the Eye, Part 1".
- Somehow, Megatron knows much of the human history and legend surrounding the Pearl, yet still needs to speak to Abdul Ben Faisal to know where it is hidden.
- When Bumblebee falls over from Menasor's earthquake-like attack while carrying the Pearl, he can be seen tossing Professor Terranova, who lands ahead of the large crack in the earth. However, Terranova is not seen again for the rest of the episode.
- The tornado that the Pearl and Bumblebee are sucked into is blowing over the Galata Valley while it is active, but when Bumblebee destroys the Pearl, it is suddenly over a huge forest, where he is eventually found in a tree by Bluestreak and Tracks.
- When the people who first discover the Pearl are shown cracking it open during the flashback, it already has the gold and jeweled casing on it. Immediately after this Megatron explains that the casing was made after the Pearl was first discovered in order to seal its powers.
- According to writer David Wise, the title of this episode was directly taken from a Kraftwerk album of the same name.
- Bumblebee totally loses his cool and assaults Auggie Cahnay when the latter cuts him off during an early part of the race. Road rage!
- Auggie Cahnay's car has automatic transmission, which is unusual in a race car.
- Symultech Industries, the company that custom-built Auggie's car, would later be mentioned in Hirofumi Ichikawa's Binaltech story. According to Dead End's system description, Symultech was responsible for building the body that was originally intended for Sunstreaker, but ended up getting hijacked by the Decepticons to create Binaltech Dead End.
- Auggie Cahnay is mentioned in the American dub of the Robots in Disguise episode "Skid Z's Choice". There, he is stated as having been deceased, and Skid-Z is seemingly possessed by his spirit. Likewise, that episode features a race called the Europa 400, supposedly named after the Europa 2000 from this episode.
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