Top Gear (2002) s22e02 Episode Script

Australian Road Trip

'Tonight, I move my eyes '.
.
Richard vandalises a road' There you go.
'.
.
and James says, "Cow.
" ' Cow! CHEERING AND APPLAUSE Hello.
Hello, good evening, and welcome.
Thank you so much.
Now, this is a mobile telephone.
It's fully functional and what I'm going to do ~ is throw it in that lavatory.
~ LAUGHTER I know that's the first time you've ever seen a programme start that way, but bear with me, because if we now look Yeah, it's only been in the water for a few seconds, ~ but it's ruined for ever.
~ LAUGHTER If you wanted to communicate with somebody, you'd be better off using a Brussels sprout.
LAUGHTER Of course, because if you expose your phone to any form of moisture or heat or dust or vibration, it will break.
It's not just phones, it's everything - printers, laptops, Wi-Fi routers.
My coffee machine breaks even when you expose it to coffee.
LAUGHTER Anything with a circuit board is as reliable as a Greek accountant.
LAUGHTER It is.
Except, weirdly, except cars.
Now, we were talking about this in the office the other day, and there was a bit of an argument.
We were saying you can drive a car across the Sahara, the Arctic, you can run it through hurricanes and dust storms and it'll be fine.
Hmm, but the producers are saying that because modern cars are so complex and so electronical, they are bound to suffer from reliability problems like everything else.
Right, so to see who is correct, the producers said to us, "Go out and each choose your favourite modern GT car, "and then report with them to what's billed "as the most hirsute and manly proving ground of them all - "Austria.
" No, James, Australia.
LAUGHTER Same thing.
'This is the hirsute and manly proving ground in question '.
.
the vast, almost completely uninhabited Northern Territory, 'better known as the outback.
'Richard had chosen to take on this brutal and enormous wilderness 'in a car that was designed for the car park at Old Trafford - 'a Bentley Continental GT.
'James had gone for a car engineered for the velvet smoothness 'of the world's racetracks - a Nissan GT-R.
'And I was in the ultimate Monaco-to-Munich mile-muncher - 'the BMW M6 Gran Coupe.
' I tell you what.
~ What? ~ I think this is the first time in all of Top Gear's history, where all three of us like all three of the cars.
Normally, I go, "Yours is rubbish, and you've made the wrong decision, "and I'm the only one who's done it properly.
" It's a good point, actually, cos I do like your car and I do like your car, Hammond, and I like my car, obviously.
It's a GT-R.
You can't not like a GT-R.
If you like driving above all else and to the exclusion of all other considerations, you have to have one of these.
If you have a Ferrari or a Lamborghini, what you're saying is, "I'm not that interested in driving.
" ~ It's showing off.
~ It's showing off.
Speaking of which, the Bentley Continental Now, what happened there? We used to think it was a bit dull, but now it's sort of good.
~ But it was overnight.
~ It was.
~ We all must have woken up I hate the Bentley Continental.
I hate the Bentley Continental.
I hate the Bentley Continental.
God, I love the Bentley Continental.
I don't understand that.
Cos they haven't changed the styling much.
It's been around a while now.
But then you just woke up one morning and went, "That looks really good.
" I'd actually have a yellow one as well.
It looks tremendous.
But while we're on the subject of styling a-hem, a-hem, a-hem! Oh, how we mocked when they said they were going to do this.
Right, so you are going to do a four-door version of a two-door version of a four-door saloon car? And then it came out and you just thought, "That is so good looking.
" I love that back wheel.
That dished back wheel looks so fantastic.
Almost a double-bubble roof.
I know it's carbon fibre, which is a little bit ~ We can gloss over that.
~ But, God, it looks good.
'As we continued our three-car love-in, a challenge arrived.
' Here we go.
"You will drive to a farm, which is four days from here.
" Everything is four days from everything in Australia! "And when you arrive you will use your cars to round up 4,000 cows.
" ~ But ~ Can you do that? "The farm is a big one.
Three million.
" ~ Three million acres?! ~ No, it's not.
~ You read that wrong.
~ It's in words.
~ It's in words, yeah.
~ Three ~ It's not? Are you sure? ~ It isn't 300,000? ~ Three million in the country? ~ That's a big farm.
~ Never mind that.
Rounding up 4,000 cows using ~ These.
HE GASPS Oh, God, James, what have you done? What's he done, what? As we know, there is a strong republican movement in this country, people who think it's ridiculous to have a head of state living in London on the other side of the world.
He turns up here with that on the number plate.
What? Can you not see that? It's obvious.
~ No.
~ "Charles and Camilla.
" You've done it on purpose, haven't you, James? ~ Let me explain.
~ You blithering idiot.
~ You idiot! Oh, no! Mine says, "Big Royalist.
" ~ It does.
~ It totally does.
You can see it.
"Big Royalist.
" Luckily, mine just says BMW 001, cos I've covered myself on this occasion.
No, you idiot.
"Bloody Mrs Windsor.
" Oh, no! "Bloody Mrs Windsor.
" ~ We're in trouble now! ~ How could he possibly know? I rang them up and said, "Can you provide a car? "Can you make sure the number plate doesn't say 'convict' "or anything on it?" And they've done that! We're going to have to drive through We'll be stoned by republicans.
'As we set off, though, we had a more immediate problem.
'Could our complicated cars really cope 'with this vast, superheated dust bowl?' Vauxhall once thought they'd try and sell the Senator in Australia, a big old saloon made in Germany in the '80s.
So they shipped one out here and it lasted a couple of days and then it split in half.
Split in half! That's how brutal the outback is.
This car has electronic valve control, electronic gearbox control, an electronic differential.
Everything is electronic.
It actually has a sensor in the engine that adjusts all the settings, so that no matter how hot it is or how cold it is, you always get 575 horsepower.
And I'm expecting it to work here in this dust and this heat and with these vibrations and then go farming.
My Nissan is an absolute nerd-fest.
I'm going to give you a few examples.
It's built in a hermetically sealed factory, so that no dust can get into the engine or the gearbox.
The tyres are filled with nitrogen, because it's more stable than atmospheric air.
The engine is canted slightly forwards under the bonnet, so that when it tenses up under acceleration, it all forms a nice, straight, efficient line.
I mean, it's been built by the cream of Japanese automotive engineers at Nissan.
That's a pretty good guarantee.
But I bet even they, watching this, would think, "Are we sure?" This has 30 ECUs in it.
That's It's got two miles of wiring in it, a lot of which is super-fast, super-sophisticated super-delicate fibre optics.
I mean, this dust is going to get everywhere.
And delicate, modern, sophisticated electronics do not like dust.
'As Hammond was rabbiting on about dust, 'I decided to have a debate with James 'about which of our cars was the fastest.
' You know the Datsun you're driving is unbelievably fast, yes? Yes.
Off the line, this will leave it for dead.
The M6 will cream you.
No, not off the line it won't.
You know that's nonsense.
'To prove him wrong, I decided to have a drag race 'on one of the many World War II airfields that litter 'this part of northern Australia.
' It is absolutely blistering, this thing.
Hammond, would you like to come and amuse us with your stately home in a drag race? Yes, all right, if I must.
He's probably got a demented relation living in a tower in there somewhere.
'It didn't take long to find an airfield.
'And we lined up on the runway with me resigned to my fate.
' I have a four-litre twin-turbo V8 making 521 bhp.
But I think I may struggle here.
They've got launch control, more power and they're lighter.
It's come up here what I have to do to engage the launch control.
So, "deactivate dynamic stability control.
"Select sequential mode with drive programme three.
" That sharpens up the gear changes.
"With the engine running, depress the brake with the left foot.
" Done that.
"Push the selector lever forwards and hold.
"A flag symbol appears in the instrument cluster.
" It doesn't.
I'll start again.
Into BEEPING It will be a fairly simple process, but it will be beyond the mind of the average ape.
Maybe the air conditioning has to be off.
Let's try that.
No.
'Things were much simpler in the Nissan.
' Right.
On, on, on.
Red, red, red.
Manual mode first.
Left foot on the brake.
This is a tiresome formality.
I'm sorry to waste your time, viewers.
Nothing in the world moves off the line more quickly than a Nissan GT-R.
That's just one of those facts.
It's probably in the Bible somewhere.
Right, not a lot to do in the Bentley before we do this.
Lower the ride height.
Done.
Firm up the suspension.
Let's have that on "sport".
And that's it.
I'm ready to go.
'And, after about half an hour, so was Jeremy.
' OK, we're good to go, we're good to go.
Three, two, one.
Oh, it's gone, it's gone, it's gone, it's gone.
BMW scrabbling about for traction all over the shop.
Should prove the point.
Wow! This launch control doesn't work.
It does about five feet and it goes, "Oh, I can't be bothered.
" 'As it seems, had James.
' Why did you stop? I won.
What do you mean, you won? The flags are down there.
~ No, you said which is the quickest off the mark.
~ Mine was.
~ No, you weren't.
~ It was.
~ It wasn't.
~ It went like a scalded rabbit.
~ I know, but I was off the mark quicker.
~ You weren't.
Nothing is quicker off the mark than this car.
~ Do you want to check the camera? ~ Yes.
~ Well, I'll check the camera.
~ All right, we'll check the camera.
'We went to check the camera.
' You watch this, OK? ~ Right, and go.
~ Go.
~ God, we haven't got very good reactions, have we? ~ Not very good.
~ My God, we are useless.
~ That can't ~ That's ~ Yes, thank you, thank you.
~ Yeah, you were first.
What? Oh, God, look at the BMW.
Why am I last? Right, we've established I think the Nissan just wins it over 16 metres, followed by the Bentley.
~ The BMW, a rather poor third.
~ Yes.
'I therefore decided we should have another drag race, 'in which James would go all the way and I'd go old school.
' I'm doing manual gear changes.
Manual start.
No traction control.
Me and the machine.
This is a serious test, actually, of these cars, drag racing them in this heat.
Three, two, one.
Come on, Bentley, come on, come on! I am hard on the heels of the Nissan.
Oh, my God, I'm overtaking it! Come on, Beemer.
I've got the Datsun! That Bentley is unbelievably fast.
But I going to get him.
HE LAUGHS This is the closest I've ever seen! Come on, Beemer, you can't lose to that monster! No way.
No way! RICHARD LAUGHS Yes! What a machine you are, BMW! 'Having established that the most powerful car is the fastest, 'we got back on the road.
' Cooling down now in the evening.
It's down to 98 degrees Fahrenheit.
'The producers said we'd be staying that night 'at the Million Stars Motel, 'which boasted "the finest fish restaurant in the outback".
'And we were looking forward to that.
However, when they told us we'd arrived Where is it? I know exactly what this is.
I've got it.
What? Million Star Motel.
Best fish restaurant in the outback.
It's a joke.
Yes.
~ It's a funny joke.
~ Funny! Funny, yeah - good! So, we're tenting.
'We were given some horrible camping stuff 'and an Australian kitchen.
'And once that had been set up, we had to catch our supper.
' No, thanks.
Welcome to Top Gear.
~ Oh, ~ BLEEP ~ hell! JEREMY SNIGGERS ~ What are you struggling with? ~ Everything.
~ Oh, watch it! Can you look behind you, when you do that? Yes! Why are you in your car? I am in the car because the crocodiles are in THAT pond.
Oh, there's no crocodiles here.
Well, there are! They can sit under water.
These are machines for killing and eating! They can tackle a water buffalo, whole.
Are you not scared of crocodiles? I'm not when they're not there.
Then there's the snakes.
There's the death adders.
There is no country on earth where the public perception of the country is further removed from the reality than Australia.
It's just tourists.
Hold on, what was that? What did that? It's gone under the water.
~ Where is he gone? ~ I don't know but he's gone down.
~ Argh, look at that! ~ It is! ~ Yes, it is! ~ That is moving towards us, isn't it? ~ Yes.
Did you read about that one last week that ate a Bentley whole, ~ complete with the man in it? ~ Yes, but it spat the Bentley out.
~ It carries a spare set of teeth.
~ Does it? ~ Yes.
APPLAUSE Thank you very much.
Thank you.
Now, because we're in Australia this week, and because Australia is enormously full of a million things to do, we have no time to do the news, I'm afraid.
Nor do we have time for The Stig to go round the track.
But we have made time to put a Star in our Reasonably Priced Car.
And that's because my guest tonight is THE best British actor ever to come out of Canada.
LAUGHTER Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome, from America, Kiefer Sutherland! CHEERING Well done.
How are you, mate? ~ Great to see you.
How are you? ~ Great! ~ Look who's here! Jack Bauer! Thank you very much.
How are you? ~ I'm very well.
How are you? ~ Good.
A lot of people would be surprised to find that you were ~ actually born in London, weren't you? ~ Yeah.
I was born in Paddington.
In fact, there was a very funny moment.
I was doing a documentary with a friend.
He was following with a camera, and I said, "St Mary's hospital is right down here.
"That's where I was born.
" And as I was showing it to him, a wrecking ball came out of nowhere and just knocked it down and, apparently, they were moving it across the street.
I got the last vision of the hospital that I was born in.
The place of your birth, they'd knocked it down.
Yeah, I know.
They did that with mine.
While I was being born! ~ Of course, your father, he's Donald.
~ Yes.
I want to get on to this.
It's slightly delicate.
But nobody likes to think of their parents having sex.
This is not something we can even visualise.
But your father, of course, was in Don't Look Now, with Julie Christie.
~ Yes.
~ Is that a struggle for you to watch? LAUGHTER It was a real struggle at about 13, 14, because Julie Christie was stunning, and you're 14 years old and you're watching it, trying to block your father out.
And then, "No, this isn't going to work.
"This isn't going to work.
" But, yes, that moment was kind of tricky.
Um, now, obviously, you're best known for 24, and I know a lot of people here will want me to talk about 24.
I think I'm right in saying, was it the first of the what ~ we now take as the binge-viewing box set? ~ Yes.
~ It sort of was.
And there had never been before You were a big-name actor who took up a TV role which, now, is the norm.
You've got Kevin Spacey going in House Of Cards and so on, but, back then, you were either a TV actor or you were a movie actor.
So it was a ground-breaking thing.
For me, it was a no-brainer.
I noticed the film world was changing.
We used to have five studios that made 50-odd movies a year.
It went down to three studios only making 15 movies a year.
And all of a sudden, the movies that I liked, like Ordinary People or Terms Of Endearment, that kind of 20 million movie, wasn't getting made any more.
It was all superheroes.
And all of the great drama was kind of shifting over to television.
And with regard to the binge-watching, I ran into a gentleman at an airport, and he said, "You ruined my honeymoon.
" I said, "How?" He said, "Well, my wife" I said, "I don't even know your wife.
" And he said "No, no, no, not that.
Not that.
"We watched the first 12 hours of 24 on the plane "from Los Angeles to Paris.
"And the first day of our honeymoon, "we spent the next "watching the next 12 hours.
" And I was flattered by that.
You know, ruining lives because they were young when it first started, and nine o'clock was their bedtime but they had to go immediately at nine o'clock.
And even now, when they hear the word "Previously" they go to bed.
HE LAUGHS That's quite a great tool.
But it was very important in my life.
Very, very important.
Thank you very much.
I'm sure a lot of people here would agree with me on that.
~ Didn't you do Rodeo riding? ~ I did, yeah.
~ Actually professionally? ~ I roped in the US TRC circuit.
And I was fortunate enough, I think I won about three or four.
So why don't you do more movies that call for you ~ to ride around on horses? ~ They don't make a lot of them.
I'm one of the few actors I know that's actually gotten to do a western.
Earlier in my career I got to do films like Young Guns and Young Guns II.
Can Charlie Sheen ride a horse? He must be able to ride a horse.
Charlie Sheen didn't like horses and horses didn't like him.
And that was firmly established when we were shooting Young Guns.
And most of the scenes involving Charlie on a horse, he was on a ladder with a saddle and some poor teamster holding the bit.
He would hold the reins and he would kind of act his way out of that.
When we went to go do Three Musketeers I remember saying to the AD, Lee Cleary, "What are you shooting right now? "He said, "We've got Charlie coming round the bend on a horse.
" I said, "You do, do you? Oh, that's going to be great! "I'd get your people out of the road.
" And he said, "No, no, he's going to stop right by the camera over there.
" ~ I said, "I promise you, he's not.
" ~ LAUGHTER And they called action and you could hear the horse starts off in a kind of a trot and then, in seconds, you could hear it's in a full gallop.
~ Then off in the distance you hear, "Whoa, ~ BLEEP! ~ Whoa! ~ "Whoa! ~ BLEEP! ~ Whoa!" And then he came around the corner and he's holding on to the mane.
He's let go of the reins.
He's now holding on for dear life and he's hitting the horse in the back, behind the ear.
I remember Lee Cleary went, ~ "Well, you weren't ~ BLEEP ~ joking there, were you?" And he didn't move a muscle to help him.
Now, we're going to move on to your cars, ~ cos I've looked at your car history, which is pretty good.
~ Thanks.
~ Cos you began with a '67 Mustang.
~ I did, yes.
When I was about 17 years old, I was living in New York and I wanted to get to Los Angeles, and I did a print ad for Levis.
And I took that money and I bought a '67 Mustang.
Six cylinder.
And I learned how to drive somewhere between New York and Maryland.
And then got pretty good at it somewhere around the Texas Panhandle.
LAUGHTER ~ You've got a Panamera now.
~ I do, yeah.
What in the name of all that's holy possessed you to buy a Panamera, which is not a good-looking car? It was I think it's one of the most beautiful interiors.
~ I like those buttons, that's brilliant.
~ I think it's phenomenal.
But I was actually going to shoot And the flight I had was from Los Angeles to Frankfurt and then Frankfurt to South Africa.
And Porsche, before Panamera had come out, they would take you off the plane, take your luggage off the plane, put it in a Panamera - the Panamera was being driven by a race-car driver - and they would take you to the next terminal, which was about five miles away.
And he would get it up to about ~ you're like, "Holy ~ BLEEP, ~ I got to get me one of these!" LAUGHTER Anyway, the lap.
How was it out there? Well, first of all, you know, it's an amazing experience, I have to say.
I've been watching this show for years.
I've been making fun of people driving this car all the time, and the whole time while The Stig was driving, I'm like, "Oh, I wish I had never made fun of anybody driving this car!" It scared the crap out of me.
He got it going at such a point where I'm like, "You're not going to make it, you're not going to make it!" Literally I felt like that sticker of Garfield at the back of the car, trying to crawl out.
That'll be The Follow Through.
Or going through the tyres.
So, who would like to see the lap? AUDIENCE: Yes! ~ Can I introduce this? ~ Yes.
GRUFF VOICE: The following events take place in real time.
NORMAL: I've always wanted to do that! Here we go, let's play it.
~ I like the colour.
~ Yeah, the colour stands out well.
This is unusual weather for Britain in January.
This is that moment where you think of nothing to say.
Except scheisse.
You could have said, "Dammit!" We would have liked a dammit.
Or maybe "Send me the schematics of the track on my PDA.
" That would have been another good one.
That's very tidy through there.
And - oh, yeah, that's very well done in that weather.
Come on - oh, you're in fourth, ya prat.
LAUGHTER ~ "Prat" gives it away.
~ Yes.
No American's going to say prat - or Canadian.
Tidy again.
Hit the brake like you hate it.
Yes, look at the tech line there, it does handle very well, that.
Oh, no, wait, you've got it understeering there.
That is very slippery.
It felt so much faster when I was doing it.
Yes, it's tragic.
Don't you dare take your foot off, you pussy.
LAUGHTER ~ The slower it looks, weirdly, sometimes, the faster it is.
~ Yeah.
See, look at that, staying away from the tyres.
Very smooth again.
I don't know what the time is yet, I haven't seen.
~ This was the tricky part.
~ Oh, that's a tricky corner, that is.
Oh, it's mean.
But that is beautifully done.
And, again, beautifully done around Gambon and across the line.
APPLAUSE DROWNS SPEECH Well, there we are.
So where do you think you've come? ~ Oh, gosh, I have ~ Bearing in mind OK, these are all dry laps.
The wet ones start with James Blunt.
I can't remember what "FW" stands for.
It think "fairly.
" LAUGHTER ~ But it might not be.
~ Oh, fairly wet.
I think our fastest wet lap we've had so far is at 1.
49.
4.
What do you think? I really haven't a clue.
OK, Kiefer Sutherland, you did it in ~ Well, ~ 1.
Good.
~ That's not surprising.
~ What is surprising in that weather is the next one - 40.
~ OK.
AUDIENCE: Ooh.
What's terrifying me LAUGHTER ~ .
.
is if, and I like James Blunt a lot, he's a really good guy.
~ Mm-hm.
~ But if James Blunt's faster than Jack Bauer, this could end 24.
~ Yeah.
OK.
Right, here we go.
AUDIENCE: Ooh! So that Are you happy with that? You know what? Yes.
I've never run on a track.
I mean, anything that I've ever been asked to do in a car, which is quite a lot of stuff, but they basically say, "OK, I want you to go as fast as you can, start here, "and then when you see that bus, hit it.
" LAUGHTER That, I do really well.
Anyway, ladies and gentleman, can I just say, on behalf of all us, ~ thank you for coming.
~ Gosh, thank you so much.
~ Kiefer Sutherland! ~ Thank you, guys, very much.
CHEERING AND WHISTLING Right.
Tonight we are in Australia, trying to find out if modern, complicated cars can survive the outback.
Indeed, the producers had told us to drive from Darwin to a three million acre farm, where we would have to round up 4,000 cows using a BMW M6, ~ a Bentley Continental, and a Nissan GT-R.
~ Yeah.
When we left the action, we were sitting beside a crocodile-infested swamp, trying to catch fish for our supper.
And the good news is we survived the crocodile.
We did, but we weren't out of danger yet.
Because in Australia animals don't just like to bite, sting and strangle you, they also love to jump out in the road and kill you in a crash.
Absolutely.
And that's why, before we set off on the second day, we thought we should probably test our brakes.
So we found a long, straight, empty piece of road - which isn't actually very difficult in the outback - and we set up a little experiment.
Here is what we've planned - Richard Hammond will drive down this road at 60mph.
When he gets to the chequered flags over there, he will brake.
Now, the Highway Code says he will stop 240 feet later on this line here, right where James May and I are standing.
Ah, yes, but the thing is, when the Highway Code was written, cars were small and light.
That Bentley weighs two and a half tonnes.
Yeah, two and a half tonnes.
So, let's see how long it takes him to stop it.
Braking! Highway Code.
Two and a half tonne Bentley.
I'll regret that.
Missed opportunity.
I mean, that's never going to come along - they volunteered and everything.
Was that 60mph? ~ Yep.
~ Miles? ~ Miles? I'm going to mark it here, look.
B for Bentley.
~ And the little wing.
~ There you go.
I elected to go next in the Gran Coupe which, unlike Hammond's Bentley, didn't have carbon-ceramic brakes.
I'm going to be relying on old-fashioned steel.
And the quick reactions of a man in his prime.
~ Do we need to be this far away? ~ No, we could confidently move forwards.
Yeah, think who's driving.
Maybe that much.
~ That much.
That much.
~ OK.
I'm ready.
Here we go.
OK, up to 60.
That does not take long.
And braking.
Oh, that hurt my face! More to the point, it had shattered Hammond's effort.
What is the Highway Code on about? I don't know, what are they talking about? The BMW had stopped in just 75 feet.
Quite a target for the Datsun to beat.
What worries me is he doesn't ever use anything he's given to the full.
Give him 900 horsepower, he uses 20.
~ So he might not use all the brakes? ~ No, he won't.
As it turned out, he did use all the brakes.
But even so ~ Ooh! ~ I think it's actually gone over the BM.
It has.
The BMW has cleaned up there.
'But, although the BMW had won, 'all three cars had made a very good point.
' When you go on a speed awareness course and the man goes, "It'll take you 240 feet to stop.
" Just put your hand up and go, "No, it doesn't.
" We have to do 70mph in Britain on the motorway, because somebody might have a Ford Anglia and it will take them that long to stop.
But if you're driving a good car like this - well, any one of ours, really - ~ you should be allowed to go 140 210mph.
~ Yeah.
I shouldn't have to suffer because somebody's still got an Anglia.
Having established that our cars could stop on a stamp, we let them off the leash.
It is absolutely ballistic.
The mid-range thrust of this, when you're midway through a corner, it just phwoar launches itself.
I think in this you could give some pretty good sports cars a pretty big surprise.
In the early days, BMW's M cars sounded like and they had telepathic steering and they were magnificent.
In recent years, though, some of the magic has sort of gone.
With this one, though, it is back.
It is properly back.
God, this is just electrifyingly good.
Soon the producers told us to pull over for some kind of motor racing event.
What manner of thing will it be, I wonder? The mystery deepened when we arrived and were given idiotic health and safety outfits.
But then all was revealed.
Holy cow! Most of the steel used to build modern China came out of this vast hole in the ground.
But today it would be our racetrack.
Must be a hill climb.
~ Like Goodwood.
~ Yeah, it is.
~ It's not exactly like ~ Not exactly, no.
Every single corner has got a drop on it that's lethal.
Oh, hello.
Oh, it's you.
"You will now take it in turns to drive up the hill climb course" ~ It is, yeah.
~ ".
.
attempting to beat a benchmark time.
" ~ Let me guess, the benchmark time is set by The Stig? ~ It isn't The Stig.
But it is The Stig's Australian cousin.
MUSIC: Back In Black by AC/DC ~ He's bigger than English Stig.
~ Mm.
And he's got a bigger sausage.
~ How did you find that out? ~ Well, look.
~ Even from here, one can see that he is a ~ Big Stig.
Big Stig would be laying down the gauntlet in a typical Aussie sportscar - a Holden Ute.
~ You know that, whatever it's called, Maloo? ~ Yeah.
~ It's got more horsepower than my BMW.
~ Has it? ~ Two more.
Three, two, one, go! MUSIC: Beds Are Burning by Midnight Oil Whoa, that's a spectacular thing to look at.
~ Oh, no! ~ Oh, he's gone a bit sideways there.
What? ~ Am I the only one who really likes that Ute? ~ Yes, you are.
~ OK.
And they're ready, steady, and across the line.
Gordon Bennett, he was Oof.
As Big Stig's dust settled, the three of us made our way to the bottom of the mine.
~ I'll win this.
~ I seriously doubt that.
~ Well, I will or he will cos we've got four-wheel drive.
~ It's true.
Four-wheel drive is useful on a tractor but on a normal road car ~ it's pointless.
It's like water.
~ How's it like water? Cos it's neither good nor bad, it just doesn't do anything.
Water's useful for a lot of things.
It is if you put hops in it, or grapes.
But on its own When was the last time a rear-wheel drive car won the World Rally Championship? ~ Huh! ~ Oh recently.
~ Not that recently.
~ In my mind, it was.
~ It was 1983 and that was yesterday.
~ Correct.
Ever since then it's been four-wheel.
~ That's a rally stage, isn't it? ~ I shall do this first.
~ And you will witness poetry.
~ Fire away.
In front of a crowd of bemused miners, I prepared for my run.
Traction control off.
Three, two, one, go! It's struggling for traction already! Second, still spinning the wheels.
Third! Still spinning the wheels.
Maybe I should have kept the traction control on.
Ohhh! Slithering.
Big slide.
God above.
What if, all of a sudden - twoo! - and then we just saw the underside of the BMW.
Could check the exhaust is OK.
Come on, Beemer, give me that 575 horsepower! Four-wheel drive is for the weak.
And through the lorries and across the line! Next, the Bentley.
And the magnificent country residence of the Duke of Marlborough takes its place on the starting line.
I'm going to bias the suspension slightly towards soft.
I might get more traction that way.
Three, two, one, go! Grip, grip, grip! Good girl.
After just 100 metres, the four-wheel drive Bentley was four seconds ahead of the BMW.
Into the hairpin.
Oh, four-wheel drive helping me round that a treat.
HE LAUGHS Hairpin.
The China and silverware is going to fall over and make a terrible mess for the butler to clear up later.
Right, braking, ready for the Oh, God, turn here Come on, bite! There you go.
HE LAUGHS TRIUMPHANTLY Right, viewers, now we're alone, look, that car should be the fastest up that course but with the best will in the world, I'm not going to be, so I've got a plan.
English Stig.
I've been carrying him around for days.
With English Stig smuggled into the driving seat, the GT-R readied for the off.
Here he is, look.
"Hello.
" Three, two, one, go! ~ That's quite a vigorous start.
~ Hello! ~ Umthat was a racing line, there, did you see? ~ Yeah.
~ None of what I'm seeing ~ Makes sense? ~ .
.
is possible.
~ Oh, my God.
~ He's twitching, he's actually ~ Oh, my! Where's he going? He forgot where the end Well, he did something James May-ish.
JAMES GROANS Thanks very much.
Here he is.
~ That was very quick.
~ Yeah.
~ It was vigorous.
~ Four-wheel drive.
~ It's a good car.
It flatters.
~ It does.
~ I'm not saying You're right to say it.
I You know, I wasn't that confident, ~ but it does look after you all the way.
~ We have the times here anyway.
The Australian Stig in the HSV Maloo did a 1:17.
8.
~ I was a little bit slower, as it's turned out.
~ Really? ~ Go on.
He was 1:17.
8.
I was 1:31.
6.
That is slower, isn't it? Bentley 1:18.
6.
~ Oh, that's not bad.
~ That's pretty good.
I'm pleased with that.
You were really You were only a second off.
I was on it on the old Bentley.
GT-R.
1:13.
3.
Four and a half seconds faster than a Stig.
~ Well done, you.
~ Thank you.
'As we got back on the road, I could accept that 'four-wheel drive makes sense in an iron ore mine.
'But James's time 'no.
It normally takes James May 1 minute How did he do that? 'And more to the point, how did our cars do that?' To be in this Bentley hammering up that hill, you're asking a lot of a modern luxury car weighing the best part of two and a half tonnes.
It did it.
'After a dirty, dusty day, 'we were looking forward to staying in an actual hotel.
'Sadly, though, this was the only one for miles.
' FLIES BUZZ ~ Evening.
~ Evening.
~ Is that a bed? ~ Is it? ~ Yeah.
'Jeremy, therefore, suggested we should leave immediately '.
.
and try a new type of tenting that he'd just thought of.
' What are you doing? ~ Most people build a campfire and then sit around it, yes? ~ Yes.
What I've done is built the campfire round us.
So we can sit in the middle, cook our salmonella and none of all the dangerous animals can get at us.
I have revolutionised tenting, is what I've done.
Hang on.
~ What are you doing now? ~ What's the best way of starting a fire? Petrol.
What must the world look like from inside that head? ~ Are you ready? ~ Yes.
Behold! For I have made fire all around us! ~ Brilliant.
Jeremy ~ It's quite warm.
~ What? One of the many advantages of a single traditional campfire that you sit round is that you can move out of the way of where the smoke is going.
Yeah.
You can't with mine, but we are safe.
Get down low.
~ Down low.
It's better.
~ I already am down low.
~ It's worse.
~ No, it's better here.
~ Anyway ~ What? ~ Where are the tents? In the cars.
~ Well ~ You plum sack.
'The next morning, after another dreadful night, 'we were back on the road.
'And after about four hours, 'Professor Hammond finally realised something.
' HE SIGHS It's big.
It is big, Australia.
'We were headed for the gigantic farm where we'd be herding cattle, 'and had decided to try and reach it in one day.
'The drive would be enormous.
' I spy with my little eye something beginning with T.
Tree.
I spy with my little eye something beginning with T.
Termite mound.
I spy with my little eye something beginning with T.
It's "tree".
Just stop it! 'Since Hammond wouldn't play, 'I tuned into the only station that my radio could receive.
' RADIO: '.
.
lightweight heifers out of Darwin heading to Indonesia 'are now fetching up to 2.
25 a kilo.
'Fattening steers heading to Indonesia up to 2.
45 a kilo.
' Why don't you play Steely Dan?! 'Normally you get SOME excitement in this part of Australia 'when you have to overtake a convoy of gigantic road trains.
' HORN HONKS 'We were actually quite looking forward to the peril.
' A lot of dust coming up here.
'But in cars as fast as ours, it was a doddle.
' I'm out of the way.
I'm free.
'At one o'clock, I had a delicious Aussie lunch.
' AUSTRALIAN ACCENT: "Bloody hot ring-burner.
" 'And then it was back to business as usual.
' RADIO: 'C2 heifers sell from 160-176.
'Lightweight C3 heifers lifted four.
'They sell from 160-190.
'And heavyweight heifers returned up to 204 cents' Oh, God! 'Darkness had fallen 'when we finally reached the bottom of the farm drive.
' Joy of joys! 'Butit took another two hours to reach 'the farmhouse at the top of it' ~ Welcome.
~ Thank you.
'.
.
where there were no spare bedrooms.
'So I decided to try another new sort of tenting.
' ~ Do you know what? ~ What? ~ We started this, I liked all three cars.
I still do.
But my conviction that the Bentley is the best is now absolute.
I just ~ I still find it slightly sort of ~ What? There's a slight hint of faux-toffery about it, which suits you very well, obviously.
But the great thing about the Nissan is it's just a finely honed driving instrument.
Well, no OK, on the Nurburgring, yours is Don't mention the Nurburgring.
~ That's what it's for, James.
~ No, it's not.
~ And Jeremy, your BM.
~ It does look brilliant.
~ There you go.
It's a very competent motorcar, the BMW.
That's damning with faint praise, that is, May.
Yes, exactly.
Yours is a bit too Dolce & Gabbana.
Yours is a bit too Poundland.
They're both brilliant cars, make no mistake.
~ What are you doing, by the way? ~ Claymores.
They're mines.
I brought them from Britain.
Ring our campsite with claymores.
~ Then any animal that comes ~ HE MAKES SOUND OF EXPLOSION .
.
they will it will become a veneer.
'When my work was done and May and Hammond had drunk all the beer, 'we turned in for the night.
' EXPLOSION ~ What was that?! ~ That was the sound of me saving your life.
'The next morning, our campsite looks like an abattoir.
' ~ What's this? ~ Crocodile's ear.
~ It's hairy.
~ Crocodiles do have hairy ears.
They don't even have ears.
They do.
That was a crocodile that was coming to eat us.
And my claymore saved our lives.
Look what we've got here, Hammond.
It's a crocodile's hoof(!) You've detonated one of the man's cows.
Let's not get bogged down with"ooh, blew up," all right? Because I've been reading about this farm.
~ Yes.
~ It's actually 3.
2 million acres.
So another 200,000 acres just slipped in there? And to put that in perspective, this single farm is the same size as Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire and Surrey and East Sussex and West Sussex and Kent, combined.
It's the same size as the South East of England! 'Everything you see here, and a lot more besides, is one farm.
'And as we set off to do cattle herding, 'we were still struggling to get our heads 'around the enormity of it all.
' It's 250 miles from this farm to the nearest supermarket.
That's like driving from London to Newcastle just to buy some washing-up liquid and some bog roll.
And it's not driving on motorways.
It's not the A1 and it's not the M1, it's tracks.
In Britain, the average beef herd is between, sort of, 28 and 50 cows.
And here it's 64,000.
'Our task was to round up 4,000 of them, 'and we assumed this many would be easy to spot.
' ~ Now, have you raised your suspension up, Hammond? ~ Yes, I have.
~ Can you see any cows? ~ No, no.
Not one.
But we could be in the equivalent of Dover and the cows could be in Beaconsfield.
Well, I was just thinking that.
What if they're all in the opposite corner? They could be 100 miles away from here.
'Even the hi-tech BMW was no help.
' COMPUTER: 'Voice commands.
New entry.
Spell name of place.
' Some cows.
'Did you mean Sheep Hills?' No, not sheep.
Cows.
What's the noise you make to attract a cow? ~ If it was a dog it would be ~ HE WHISTLES I don't know anything about cows apart from what they taste like.
It is difficult to be a cowboy when we can't find any cows.
No cows.
'After an hour's meandering about, however, we struck gold.
' Cow! Over there.
Yes, cows! I'm counting four cows.
That is a start.
Get 'em, round 'em up.
You two take the flanks, I'll stay at the rear.
Don't get too close.
If you panic 'em, you'll spoil the burgers.
We've got them.
We have them.
This is perfect.
We're brilliant at this! 'But then' They're going to brake and go in the woods.
They're getting into the trees! I can't go in there.
It's too rough.
'And even though Hammond had four-wheel drive, 'it turned out he couldn't go in there either.
' ENGINE REVS Um, I'm beached.
'And by the time James had pulled him out' Three, two, one.
Action! '.
.
our four cows had wandered off.
' Sitrep - we found four cows and we lost them.
'So, what chance would we have when we found 4,000?' Right.
Right.
Now, this is the biggest flock of cows I have ever seen in my entire life.
'Our job was to get them all turned round 'and then herd them into a giant pen, which was 10km away '.
.
a pretty tall order for three cars like these.
' It's like Zulu, watching them coming towards us.
Here we go.
Has anyone got any plans, cos I haven't? 'Hammond suggested we break the herd into smaller chunks.
'But that didn't work at all.
' They're going in completely the wrong direction now.
Oh, now How are they? What, they've gone They're just going round me.
They are not very scared of me.
I'm in the middle.
I've been herded by the cows.
It's all gone wrong.
~ Clarkson, where the hell are you? ~ I am now in cow dust.
I can see nothing.
OK, they're charging me.
This is unexpected.
They're running towards me.
We are in the middle of the cows.
We've been outwitted by cows.
Um, nice cows.
Morning, cows.
That bull's menacing me.
CATTLE BELLOW This is a remarkably brave cow.
It won't be pushed back into line at all.
When I say "cow", I mean massive bull.
I may need some help here.
This guy is properly stubborn.
I shall call you James May.
He fears the Nissan more.
'And as it turned out, that wasn't entirely accurate.
' BANG He's head-butting me! JEREMY LAUGHS He head-butted your Datsun.
'Meanwhile, back in the Bentley' RICHARD WHISTLES Jeremy! 'Clearly, things weren't going well, 'so we made a decision.
' I think there are too many for us.
Well, yes.
We need the cavalry.
'And ten minutes later, it arrived.
' Ho-ho-ho! One of the most dangerous jobs in the world, flying the Robinson helicopters to muster the cattle.
On average, round about eight are killed every year.
Sometimes they will use the skids to actually push the cows into line.
'With the air cav as backup, we started to get our act together.
' Hammond, you're the rough terrain response.
And I'm the quick response.
That's good, that's good.
Channel 'em in, I'll drive them forwards.
Flanking, flanking.
Go on, go left.
I was riding my horse Braking right.
Good work, Hammond, good work.
That Bentley going across that field is a sight to behold.
Look at Look at its wheels! 'Soon, we realised something.
' Ah, there you go.
Look at that.
'For once, Top Gear was being ambitious and not rubbish.
' DRAMATIC MUSIC CATTLE BELLOW ~ All right, cowboy! ~ I feel pretty manly! I feel like one of those bulls.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE ~ I loved that.
~ I thought that was fun.
~ That was a lot of fun.
~ It was.
~ And these cars ~ better than horses.
~ And nobody fell off.
~ Much better.
~ Yeah.
But can we just stop for a moment? The amazing thing - the cars survived it.
Nothing broke.
All three.
Fantastic.
And if Nissan well, actually, or Bentley or BMW, if they made a laptop, I'd buy it.
You could throw a Nissan laptop in the lavatory, do a log on it LAUGHTER .
.
and you'd still be able to log on on it.
~ LAUGHTER ~ You would.
Anyway we must now decide which of these cars is the best.
Well, I'm not backing down.
It's the Bentley.
I'm not backing down.
It is this Nissan.
James, sorry, mate.
You are just wrong.
The Nissan GT-R, it has a whiff of the Nurburgring.
It's not just a whiff of the Nurburgring.
It reeks of it! Your clothes will smell of it six weeks after you've been in it.
It's better than it smelling of Ryan Giggs's bath water.
LAUGHTER Mate, it's a Bentley.
~ Think what that means.
~ I'll tell you what it means, Hammond.
It means it is £66,000 more expensive than this.
Yes, because that's a Nissan! That's a Bentley.
Exactly.
It's a Nissan.
And when you strip everything off this Nissan, you find underneath a racing car.
When you strip all the stuff off of that Bentley, ~ underneath it is a VW.
~ LAUGHTER If we strip all the stuff off you, we'd find underneath the same basic skeleton as you would find in a racing driver.
But when we put it all back on, as we must, to make you James May, you're James May! That's the wrong car.
Yes, but, Hammond, if we stripped everything off of you, we'd find the same skeleton that you have in a racing driver when he was a little boy! But when you put it all back together, you are still Richard Hammond.
You in that GT-R is like you in those shoes.
Ridiculous! Says the man in the jacket woven out of 100% pure 1935.
LAUGHTER That was designed very specifically for a purpose - to feel good on the ragged edge of performance.
You're not going to do that.
You have a watch that can go to the moon.
You're never going to go to the moon.
They don't make moon boots in your size, but you like having that watch because it means it is a good watch.
And it's the same with the car.
~ You're just being a ~ BLEEP.
LAUGHTER, APPLAUSE Thank you.
~ And you've got a ~ BLEEP ~ like a ~ BLEEP BLEEP.
LAUGHTER A baby one.
Gentlemen.
Gentlemen, gentlemen, I'm sorry, I'm going to have to interrupt at this point, because the fact of the matter is, by any measurable means you choose, the BMW is the best car.
~ But Y ~ But I wouldn't buy one.
Well, why? Because fast, expensive BMWs plummet in value as soon as you buy them.
You buy one of those, within 18 months you are going to lose £40,000, £45,000.
And as a Yorkshireman, I just couldn't handle that.
~ I really couldn't.
~ That means you have to choose one of these.
~ I know.
I find myself now with the casting vote.
Um, the problem I have is, OK, I'm at the precise age when I'm growing out of the Nissan and into the Bentley.
~ That's the problem I've got.
~ And that is why you should have this.
The Nissan will help you rage against the dying of the light.
LAUGHTER Rather than any of that, you can grow old gracefully and in comfort in the Bentley, which is a great place to be.
It's got quilted leather in there.
Hammond, quilted leather is what an incontinence sheet looks like ~ if you look at it under a microscope! ~ LAUGHTER I have made up my mind.
Right now, I've made up my mind.
I'm going to ditch my Yorkshireness, not care about the depreciation, go for the Beemer.
APPLAUSE ~ You never chose ~ The thing is ~ You never will.
~ .
.
it's breathtaking, that car.
~ All right.
~ And on that bombshell, it's time to end.
Thank you so much for watching.
See you next week.
Good night! CHEERING AND APPLAUSE