Aired 20 years ago - Jul 20, 2003
REVIEWS: TVR T350C • Overfinch Range Rover • Cadillac Sixteen • Volkswagen Phaeton
CHALLENGE: Land Rover reliability challenge
The Volkswagen Phaeton is tested; a car designed to compete with Mercedes and BMW. Richard drives the TVR T350c...
alongside a Harrier Jump Jet. The Stig takes the TVR and the Noble around the track to see which is the faster car, after Richard and Jeremy can't separate them using the ancient art of Top Trumps. James drives the enormous Cadillac Sixteen prototype; Jeremy drives the Range Rover 580s which has been tuned by Overfinch, and Britain's fastest disabled driver. Alan Davies is the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
Oh, this feels good.
It hasn't lost the lairiness but
it's just been to anger management.
sitting next to me,
clearing his throat.
This has a proper straight six
configuration. It's a race car.
A magnificent start! He's gone!
Look at that, oversteer.
Loser, loser, loser, loser, loser!
TRADITIONAL AUSTRIAN WALTZ PLAYS
I've tried to get VW to tell me
what these parameters are,
but they've only given me one.
Push this button, and a panel
slides down and acts as a radiator.
There's more too.
It went up to a smooth and
totally stable 201 miles an hour.
The Bentley Continental GT. The
most anticipated car for decades.
Want to guess? 200!
We like the shape? Yup.
Interior? Yup. Ashtray action.
For the last two series,
it's glued-in hair from Europe.
Is there a Cavalier thing running
through the stand-up?
He looks across and there's
four blokes in a Cavalier going,
The minibus is going,
achump, chiggum, chiggum.
"Imagine I'm a passer-by.
Who would you like to beat on the
board? Where do you want to be?
Michael Gambon did a wet lap.
That is a 13.5-litre V16 -
And this is a 1000 horsepower car.
It needs one on the front or back.
That's huge - 13.5?
We found the drivers and a converted
Porsche 911, and we had a track...
"You did that on purpose," -
that's what he's going to say.
The results - they are as follows.
In sixth place...
It's priced at £45,000,
And they've fiddled
with the gearbox.
2,000 rpm and...
It's a giggle, but you've got no
real say in the direction of travel.
The normal Range Rover
is a very good car,
Iooking a bit slow, it must be said.
Land Rover said,
"We're building it properly. "
It won't go up and down. Oh, dear!
We thought Jay Kay would sit on top
of our celebrity board for ever.
If you have any opinions about the
show, do keep them to yourselves!
Aired 20 years ago - Jul 13, 2003
REVIEWS: Vandenbrink Carver • Volvo S60 R • GM HyWire • Vauxhall Signum
James drives the Hy-Wire, a hydrogen-powered concept car and Jeremy tries the new Volvo S60 R - claimed by Volvo to be a rival for the BMW M3. He also drives the new Vauxhall
Signum, from the back seat using a hoe and string. Richard drives/rides the Carver, a three-wheeled tilting bike from Holland. Graeme Le Saux argues the case for the Audi Quattro as the greatest car of all time and Patrick Stewart is the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
I can just sit here,
listening to the excellent stereo,
you can put the suspension
into comfort - bison - mode,
I have the brochure. I've never
seen so many stupid acronyms
for driver control.
The suspension is in advanced mode,
which Volvo says makes it like
The time was 1 min 35 secs dead.
Whorr! So that goes...
You're looking and thinking,
"Very nice. "
But let's be honest -
it's never really changed.
It's replaced with this -
a computer cable.
Squeeze them, and we brake.
but I am concentrating very hard
There are no batteries to recharge
It'll only take half an hour. Or
better, get him to bring one round.
Remember this moment.
That is the car of the future.
TINNY ENGINE WHINE
At seven in the morning!
and the first thing you thought of
to do with it was swear. Genius!
Anyone who nicked it would go, "No!"
Like those who want drum 'n' bass.
Go and try it on. We want
to see if it works. Seriously?
They're made in America, of course,
and 1,000 lamps, and I'm wearing
this! Yes, I am hot! Does it work?
It's rare to have an opportunity
to take up an argument
with a celebrity such as yourself.
She's talking on her cellphone.
She's steering with her left elbow,
I'm bored! Driving's boring!
I think, "Look at him! What sort
of geography does he teach?"
and a brilliant young actress, less
than a year out of drama school
called Lisa Dillon,
That was the early stages
of his career. So he went on...?
who is at the emotional point of
implosion when the play begins.
We were quite poor when we grew up.
My parents never owned a car
and didn't drive.
We would make out in the back of
the SS Jaguar, so it wasn't just...
It's British racing green. It has
wire wheels which are a nightmare.
Can you have fun driving
in America? I find it tricky,
ignoring the phone malarky.
There are these three banked corners
on Sunset - "Dead Man's Curve".
No traction control on your XJS?
but I would like to see him
eat my dust.
and you're across the line!
You've just made me very happy.
And 0 to 60 takes eight seconds,
which in bike terms is a week.
It uses hydraulic rams that allow
it to go over at ridiculous angles.
so at slow speeds, you can turn it
for a full lock and it stays level.
Now, the bad news is...
My favourite Dutch story
is they had an explorer years ago
And I don't think I'd tire of it.
The great thing was I went to
a party... What, in this? Yeah.
This is a country where a gay
marriage is legal.
He is my partner and also my lover.
The Audi TT, the 225bhp version,
£2,500 off. This gets better.
In every other car I've driven,
the celery rolls around,
In the more expensive models which
go up to £25,000, what you get here
is a fridge and a DVD player.
No, no, no. Vectra. Still no.
And all these people had one thing
in common - they were all men.
Aired 20 years ago - Jul 06, 2003
REVIEWS: Nissan 350Z • Alfa Romeo 147 GTA • Citroën C3 Pluriel •Mercedes CLK500 • Audi A4 • Daihatsu Copen
CHALLENGE: The Race for the Universe
James and Richard go camping with a selection of cabriolets to see which is the best. Naturally they
choose the wettest place in Britain, Buttermere in Cumbria. Jeremy drives the Alpha Romeo 147 GTA and the Nissan 350Z and a Klingon, a Darlek, a Cyberman, Ming the Merciless and Darth Vader race each other around the track in a souped-up Honda Civic. Jodie Kidd shows the men how to drive the Liana - properly.
We've had fusion food before,
So I pointed its nose at the road
snaking out of Sheffield
and up onto the moors.
and on to a top speed of 150,
and I'm sure it will.
I could go very berserk
at this point,
three ancillary dials,
driving position's good.
When we get a British one,
we'll give it to the Stig.
is one of the reasons we love these
cars. That crazy British optimism.
And that's about 17,500...too much.
Why, do you think they'll
think we're a pair of screaming..?
and there's a nice cold metal ball
on the gear stick.
It's a diesel! Somebody decided,
extravagant and illogical
280 components just in the roof
frame! And a lightning conductor.
And there's another problem.
It's quite safe, though. It's very
safe. NCAP crash-test, four stars.
Seemed all right. Beetle.
Would you buy one?
You may as well have a small engine.
So why not have the Audi? Yes.
Why take the Merc over the Audi?
My guest tonight is very, very tall
and a global fashion icon.
That helps. If it's a Ferrari...
I'll drive with my knees up here.
This year, I did San Francisco
The truckers help out, don't they?
Have you driven one on a track?
So where did the love of cars
I have three donkeys at home. Yes?
I'm competitive, I went round until
I got a good time. Practice laps.
We have. So, we set out to find
the fastest Master Of The Universe.
Yes, indeed. Ming's on a hot bot.
Now I understand. Thought I'd
chip in. Thank you, Jeremy.
Incisive motoring journalism there.
Which means we have a winner.
It's the Cyberman.
"My neighbour is a clot
and he's ruined...
The BX has got a suspension
that goes up and down.
Look at that! That!
THAT is a spoiler. No, it isn't.
That's a Vauxhall Cavalier,
isn't it? You can tell?
came along with the Golf R32.
trying desperately to keep
the power away from the wheels.
But that's OK because
you'd have to be insane to buy one.
and I know it'll ruin you BUT if you
want to be sensible - get the bus.
Off the line and predictably
a huge amount of wheel spin!
No. He's through it. He was four
seconds off at the halfway mark.
Aired 20 years ago - Jun 22, 2003
REVIEWS: Koenigsegg CC8S • Renault Megane • Hummer H1 • Hummer H2
CHALLENGE: Crash testing the Megane with a real driver
The 655bhp Koenigsegg records the fastest straight-line speed on the Top Gear track, but can it set the fastest lap time? A
Renault Mégane is crash-tested and there’s the first look at the new Aston Martin V8 Vantage. While Jeremy drives the Hummer H2, Richard drives the Talon Riot Control Vehicle… through a Portacabin. Stuart Hall extols the virtues of the Rolls Royce Silver Cloud and Neil Morrissey is this week's Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
at 112 kilometres an hour.
So, welcome, everyone, to the
fastest car we've ever tested here.
It really is absolutely brutal!
If it's a lovely summer's night and
you want it set up to go to the pub
It's the follow through -
that's very fast!
How are you doing?
Oh, that's how, yeah, you're right.
CC. There's no space for the time.
Hey! How are you? How are you?
There's perfectly good reasons.
I understand why you don't like them.
As they drive past your house at
90mph and you're clipping your hedge,
they go past going, "Sad BLEEP".
And going, "A bitter lemon, please,
cos I'm riding my Honda SBR. " Yeah.
What do they call them in hospital?
Donors? Yeah. Absolutely.
I like to go to race days.
Do you think you can beat
the chef duo? I'd like to.
That's the most exciting bit for me,
finding out. It's a good one.
out of sight. Mothers'll be fishing
kids out of cubby holes for years!
That's like jumping off a very high
wall with an adult on your back.
Now, normally, at this point,
we'd just show you the crash test.
This has never been done before
on a car programme.
About the speed... About the speed
of a general mum going to the shops.
You'd better do that. I'll do this
alone. It's one of those calls!
It's been bent out of shape here,
which means the cabin has been
deformed and that's where you'd be.
There are bars running along
the door. All the energy goes from
the front, the crash, around you.
That's basically a Rover 75.
I've got it. I've got it.
Unless it's after 2001,
it is a two-star car.
Whoops! How does that make you feel,
It's got a 4.3L V8 engine,
Before we get carried away,
I've spotted a few drawbacks.
of any other off-road car.
If someone runs into you -
you're never going to know.
Can you guess what they are?
Try this anywhere else, I'd have
had my head kicked in by now.
It's available here
with left-hand drive for £60,000.
it's worse on the road.
It's a Roman orgy, a Hawaiian
barbecue, a Viennese waltz
If you concentrate REALLY hard,
you can justify this thing.
Every journey is an event.
I want to go into town.
I'll save up and come back.
Now that is what
I call a control panel -
Well, if things get really nasty,
I can always just head-butt stuff.
Aired 20 years ago - Jun 15, 2003
REVIEWS: Subaru Impreza • Mitsubishi Evo VIII • Vauxhall VX220 Turbo • Peugeot 206 GTI
CHALLENGE: Land speed record for caravan towing
The Mitsubishi Evo VIII and the Subaru Impreza WRX STi Type UK are compared, but which will Jeremy prefer?
James is given the task of setting a new land speed record for a car towing a caravan. The Peugeot 206GTi and the Vauxhall VX 220 turbo are tested and Pink Floyd drummer, Nick Mason, states his case for the greatest car of all time. Richard drives the Palmer Jaguar at a track day and Richard Whiteley is the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
Sometimes you know,
this job is very, VERY good.
These cars should be called the
Mitsubishi Did You Spill My Pint?
Ooh, I can't give you an answer now.
This is the tweet one, remember.
And... Oh dear.
I have the times here. The Impreza
did it in one minute 30.1,
Whenever I go to a dinner party
the person next to me always says,
"Please sit somewhere else".
is to leave civilised roads -
and let's be honest,
civilised road behaviour - behind.
That takes serious effort.
You have ruined it!
Ooh! I might have overcooked that.
# You shook me to the core... #
They're doing a V6 in the S-type,
and a four cylinder in the X-type.
Which has nothing to do with Ford.
and they cancelled that as they'd
spent their money on the diesel.
Look! There's a way to go before
it becomes a viable family car.
We decided to set the new boy,
James, a task.
This is our caravan. It may not be
aerodynamically modified in any way.
Our first run, to test things out.
One of the strangest things
about being over 40
Educated at Cambridge. Wooh!
Wooden steering wheel. 1973.
a priceless collection
of arms and armour...
Whoosh, it was gone. It was nicked?
It was nicked.
We can play the music
while you work this out.
Here we go...
This time the cross winds have built
up. The caravan starts to fishtail.
It's just been bought by somebody
quite famous. Do you want to guess?
It's never overtaken anyone.
That's what passengers are for.
His dog ate it. She did.
it's the way of the cool wall.
The Kristen Scott Thomas test.
Picture her outside her apartment
in that. She'll get in. No.
They're holding onto cars so they
can save money on buying cars.
are worth a bit less.
Vauxhaull have sold 1,000
of these VX220s.
You'll note the new spoiler on
the back and its smart new wheels.
It has the same simple roof
as the Elise, same basic chassis
I drove an Elise round this track
in the last series,
Lotus has responded to this car
with a 190 Elise that we saw
earlier in the programme,
In the first sector this car was
level-pegging with the BMW.
Do you know something -
who'd like to see that again?
Aired 20 years ago - Jun 08, 2003
REVIEWS: Porsche 911 Turbo • Ford Street Ka •James May on TR6 • Renault Clio V6
CHALLENGE: Rally pit crew vs. women getting ready for a night out
In an episode dedicated to "blokeishness", James drives a Triumph TR6 - a ‘man’s convertible’, the
Porsche 911 C4S is compared to the 911 turbo version and Jeremy tries the Renault Clio V6 - the “ultimate bloke hatchback”. Richard meets Richard Lynne, who has a car in his kitchen. Also, can the Ford rally team mechanics change the suspension, gearbox, brakes, differential, driveshaft and clutch of a rally car, more quickly than four women can get ready for a night out? The Land Rover is Richard's choice as the greatest car of all time and Anne Robinson shows off her brand new head as the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
With the 911 Turbo, it lulls you
into a false sense of security.
All the looks, but without
the 18th century killer plumbing.
why pay more for a fake?
I designed it there. I sketched it
out on cardboard on the floor.
But I've got the safety wedge out.
You can see where this is going,
Warm and dry, the house. Brilliant.
There was, but unlike the car,
the wife did fit through the door!
Don't you think anyone who's ever
owned a red Ferrari is a plonker?
Don't you find the really joyful
thing about both the cars
We've got these books here.
That's a silly question. Never.
Why do you think we don't?
and she says, "Take
the second turning on the left. "
I mean, what guys should do if they
want to pull is go out with a guy
TT. Well, don't be picky with me!
Well, it's better than cycling,
but, you know. Yeah.
He's the maddest driver I've seen!
I want to go round again now.
Causes the hazard lights to flash
and has a loud voice saying,
and making it smaller. Those hours
spent on origami weren't wasted!
I think it's all
of these folding convertibles.
You know the Peugeot 206CC?
That's true. I'm actually
the only bloke on this show.
So they gave the job
to some Germans.
Good job they didn't
give it to a Frenchman, eh?
We'd all have handbags by now.
in less time than it takes
a group of women to get ready.
So this is properly scientific.
If everybody's ready - on you go.
Look - a place for everything
and everything in its place.
So the rally team got the car
changed in? 27 minutes. 27 minutes.
Have you ever seen such an
amazingly funky little car?
But in this, they've fitted
a carry cot for your baby.
the lever to adjust the seat
is down here.
It'll do 155mph
We know it has high levels of grip,
but what happens if you exceed them?
♪ Well you don't have to
say you love me, baby... ♪
What impresses me is you found
that limit and you went beyond it.
He did it in 1m36.2s.
Aired 20 years ago - Jun 01, 2003
REVIEWS: Jaguar R Coupe • Jaguar XKR-R • Aston Martin DB7 GT
CHALLENGE: How far can you drive until you become bored in a Mark 3 Jaguar XJR
A look at the iconic Jaguar MKII, the first car ever to have disc brakes and a badge on the back to warn
drivers that it stopped quickly. There's a look at possible Jaguars of the future with the R Coupe concept car, whilst James drives the C Type Jaguar. Jeremy drives the Aston Martin DB7 GT and the Jaguar XKRR.A.A. Gill champions the London taxi as the greatest car of all time and bumbling Boris Johnson is the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.
Camden County police officer.
I'm a free American.
Remember when your new episodes are out
with TVShow Time for iPhone and Android
Go on with your gardening, baby.
Folks, folks, please
don't encourage her.
We sat on the fifth row.
356, 240 occurred approximately
15 minutes ago.
Stop, that's my car !
All the broken glass seems
to be on the outside.
and spread your legs.
I haven't called it in yet,
Oh, God !
I skinned my pecker !
Firemen tried to get him
down with a ladder,
* Bad boys, what you get
is what you see *
Aired 20 years ago - May 25, 2003
REVIEWS: Volkswagen Touareg • Lexus SC430 • Hyundai Coupe • BMW Z8 • Perodua Kelisa
CHALLENGE: Country with fastest supercar
David Soul was the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car and tried to break as many Liana’s as possible. He managed an
impressive tally of two. Richard drives the Lexus SC430 and Jeremy drives the Volkswagen Touareg and wonders if it is really worth £50,000. A Jaguar XJS gets a little power boost from a nitros kit and James drives the Perodua Kelisa. Jeremy drives the BMW Z8 Alpina, a car that suffers because Ronan Keating owns one.
That means no more
than 19 miles to the gallon.
I'd the choice of teeth out,
or carrots down the shirt.
50! £50,000 for this!
The Vauxhall VX 220 is a fine car
in every way. Go on! Out!
He's interested in his engine!
I mean, just look at this wood!
It's a dreadful compromise.
You don't, do you? I do. I don't
like that ready modified look.
Is that turbo? No,
it's normally aspirated.
We've waited for this since it was
at the Paris Motor Show in 2000.
Why? Dunno. Mahogany crank shaft?!
That was it. "You're banned,
you'll never drive another Bristol. "
manufacturers and importers
will sell a car to themselves
They couldn't say,
"Send them back to Japan. "
there's more to pay after that. Yes.
From France, the only supercar
they build, the Venturi Atlantique.
The Jaguar was rubbish! Yes!
I remember that from somewhere.
That's what I called it.
The first year,
it didn't do too well.
A terrible car. Well,
I won't tell you what happened then!
A bit violent with the gear box
He said you were as good as JK
and were up for beating him.
There was a time when Britain's
cheapest motor was truly horrible.
I wasn't expecting more and
I wasn't expecting entertainment.
OK, it's not a Ferrari, but James,
I'm with you on this one.
OK, you. Right?
All we have to do -
I've already started -
The system can deliver up to 500Hp
extra. Over and above? That's right.
For this run the nitrous will give
our old heap an extra 200Hp -
Thanks, Richard. I have good news.
My trousers are finished.
It turned out to be awful. Let me
show you what it was like to drive.
But, before it goes to the dusty
vaults of history, a German company
After much careful deliberation,
the simple answer is no.
If Alpina haven't made it handle
any better, what have they done?
The sort of person who wants
to dawdle along, top down
with a burble from the exhaust
Just thought you ought to know.
MUSIC: "Don't Give On Us"
by David Soul
Well, you won't believe the time he
did it in. One minute, 29 seconds.
Aired 20 years ago - May 18, 2003
REVIEWS: Rolls-Royce Phantom • Rover P5 • BMW M3 • Audi S4
CHALLENGE: Fastest political party
Jeremy drives the new Rolls Royce and there’s a nostalgic look at the Rover P5, including one owned by the Queen. Jamie Oliver tries his luck in the
Liana as the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car, he also tries to prepare a salad in his camper van, whilst being driven around the track by the Stig. On the track, politicians representing the main political parties, as well as some less well-established parties try to become the fastest political party.
is making a big deal about this.
Not sure why cos you get it...
Now, for 80 years
that hasn't really been the case.
It's British steel,
The British and Germans do good
stuff. The new Mini? Yep.
You can't have a luxury caravan,
can you? No.
James Tarbuck, not a chance.
The Ferrari Enzo? Mmm. Three of
these sold in this country so far.
No, that's uncool! There's a man
here I happen to know has an A3.
From the Official Monster Raving
Loony Party... Hooray! Whoo!
It's the Thames. Get buses off the
road and make them go on the river.
Another member, when they see that
they think, "They look nice, "
The Queen of England
"Gentleman's club on wheels"
but it took 17 seconds to get there.
Rover P5B coupe is the one to
go for if you're buying one today.
When you're used to cold baths
and cross-country runs, a Rover P5
must've been a welcome sight.
Several - oh, God, lately, yeah!
Tell the nice people what happened.
Having a scooter is better than
your car. It's a bit cold and wet.
Seriously. I'm sorry to have to do
this... We rang your restaurant
You know what I did?
I phoned and pretended to be you,
What have you done to that?
I've kept it pretty original,
You're not here just to fool around
on our track with your Maserati.
Your window's down! You won't beat
Gordon, cos he had his window up!
You can use it every day,
OR take it to a track.
It'll set your trousers on fire.
They've given it more doors
than the BMW and more grip,
and two more cylinders,
Right, first up, the BMW. 343 HP,
rear-wheel drive, 160kg lighter
A seriously quick car -
fantastic V8 engine,
almost as good as the BMW's.
and said, "Slow him down,
I can't keep up! " They're very good
in the wet AND dry.
Things are probably
coming up faster for him.
Uh-oh. It looks like the
Green Party's about to have a big
impact on the environment.
Now, just before you write in
to complain, there was a bit of
a brouhaha following that.
Aired 20 years ago - May 11, 2003
REVIEWS: Smart Roadster • Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet • Bowler Wildcat • Bentley T2
CHALLENGE: Drag racer jet engine incinerates Nissan Sunny
In the seemingly never-ending quest to destroy as many caravans as possible, Richard uses a drag racer
to rid the roads of Britain of yet another one. A Nissan Sunny - the car Richard hates more than any other is also destroyed in the same manner. James May makes his first appearance on 'new' top Gear: he shows us his Bentley T2 and tells us why it’s a nightmare to own. Richard Drives the Bowler Wildcat and declares himself: “a driving god!” The Smart Roadster and the McLaren F1 are also featured.Vinnie Jones in the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car
If it's to have any street cred, it has to work out here.
I like the styling, the interior,
the traction control, the CD player.
to replace those plastic
body panels if you crash.
It's OK if you've got a handful
of roast potatoes to carry around,
It's made in France!
That still has Hugh Grant
as a gearbox.
Seriously! Look, there's a man
in the car,
Anyway, he said 80% of these
are going to be sold to women.
It is very much not a car for a bloke.
But it is a cool car.
It's this, the Top Gear Love & Hate
board. The Love section's full.
thing - I hesitate
even to call it an abomination.
The men were men and
in the wall they stood like that.
It is five seconds, isn't it? Yeah.
I ran on and it was like a minute.
We'll look out for him. You're
over in America a lot these days.
him up the motorway.
Do the garden, mate! Yes!
It is a Suzuki Liana.
It's not a fast car.
Three! 53! You're in there
faster than Ross Kemp.
One day, probably in the dentist,
you'll leaf idly through the small ads in the back
of a classic car magazine.
This is a good'un. It cost
?14,000, the parts are genuine,
I'd expect the wipers to be here
but it's the gear stick.
a Bentley for Mondeo money.
Servicing only costs the same
as it does for a mid-size BMW,
Well... Which doesn't do this.
It's a 206, it's a GTi,
it's 138bhp, slightly less powerful,
If you already have a small car,
get a small dog like one of those
mutants that come third at Crufts.
I quite like those cars, actually.
so it will be competing
with the Ferrari 360.
They want to prove this is their
shape so they can copyright it.
This is our cheap thrills show -
this isn't a Ferrari.
Wanted by the Italians, he still
survives as a soldier of fortune.
An Aston Martin DB7 will go
from 0-60mph in 4.9 seconds.
Instead of a heavy chassis, they
use a raised-car style space frame
that takes three weeks to weld.
But think about it - a lot
of manufacturers claim to have
What does it do to your insides?
I dislodged a lung in Italy.
More than that, it's a supercar
that's virtually indestructible.
But I do know someone
who is a driving god.