This gave me a hearty chuckle. It's a go-kart race in Gran Turismo 5 in which the player drives in reverse for the entire race and manages to pull out a win.
Ridiculous, right? Sure seems that way and it's entirely possible that there will be a patch which changes the speed of the karts while in reverse in short order. But with as long as the game spent in development and the attention to detail which is the trademark of the series, stumbling on to something like this seems really unlikely.
I don't know a damn thing about cars, though. It's my experience that reverse gear is not as powerful as a forward gear. But then there are comments on YouTube that make me think that perhaps this isn't as silly as it appears.
Take, for example, this comment from pkeeghan:
These karts are based on 100cc karts with direct chain drive. If you stop one of these karts the engine stalls. If you lock up the rear wheels the engine stops.
For the sake of gaming they have introduced a reverse gear (otherwise you wouldn't be able to restart the kart once you'd spun out and come to a complete stop.
Whats happened is that the reverse gear has the same ratio as gear 1 (the only gear on the kart since its direct chain driven). There? for it can go the same speed in reverse.
That actually makes a lot of sense, as does this comment from Alterskye4:
Due to centrifugal clutch and no gears - it would be possible to do this in a kart actually....? if it had a reverse gear. So not too far away from reality if you had the skill to drive backwards.
So, again, not being the sort of person who really understands the workings of automobiles, I'm actually willing to buy this. I am ready to believe that the fact that the go-karts in GT5 can move just as quickly backwards as forwards is for a very real and technically accurate reason. And if that happens to also be the truth, so much the better.