Top Gear (2002–…): Season 24, Episode 1 - Episode #24.1 - full transcript

Matt LeBlanc, Chris Harris and Rory Reid return for the 24th series of Top Gear. This week features the astonishing, ultra-exclusive Ferrari FXXK, tested to the max by Chris Harris at the ...


Hello and welcome to Top Gear.

-We're back!

And we've got lots and lots
of shiny new cars.

That's right.


That's right.

In fact, here's a look
at what's coming up
over the next seven weeks.

Oh, it's on!

Let's go racing!




-It's got a chicken!

I'm done.
Have the car, I'm out.


Oh, the acceleration
is enormous!


The way this is written,

it sounds like
I just kicked your ass here.


My knob's come off!

Oh, yes! What a thing!

That is immature.

Ooh. Okay.

All righty.

Wow, that's a lot
for the eyes.


Looks okay to me.


Let's kick it off with this.

The LaFerrari.

Costs £1 million,

and only 500
will ever be built.

Interesting, isn't it,
that adding "La" to a name

makes it sound more exotic,

whereas "Le,"
not so much, really.


I get it.
I see what you did there.
You got... You got me.

We don't need to go into
your last name. All right.

Anyhow, the LaFerrari.

You hear that, you think,
"Ferrari's VIP area," right?

The fastest,
the most advanced,
the most exclusive.

Well, nearly. Because,
in the world of Ferrari,

turns out
there's a V-VIP area,
somewhere off-limits

-to us mere commoners.

Somewhere home to
a truly extraordinary machine.

CHRIS: Here it is,
the Ferrari FXX-K.

And, no, that name
is not accidental.

Oh, my [BLEEP] days.

It's based on the bones
of the LaFerrari hypercar,

but it's been intensified
in every department.

Only 40 will ever exist,

and it costs over £2 million.

Or at least it would
if you could buy it.

Which you can't.
Even if you're a zillionaire,

you don't just
phone up Ferrari
with your credit card details.

Oh, no.

First, you must
have been judged,
in Ferrari's words,

to have the right "mind-set".

You must be invited.

In fact, the FXX-K
is so unattainable,

I'm the first outsider
ever permitted to drive one.


So, just for today,

you can keep your LaFerraris,

your everyday hypercars.


Today, I've got more power,

more lightness,

more grip.

So much more.


Oh! Oh!

The speed is preposterous!

If you believe it,

it has 1,050 horsepower.

That's 87 more than
the LaFerrari road car.

It's so physical.

It gets inside your body.

Sensational, addictive,
mighty, corrupting power!

Naught to 60 takes
just over two seconds,

but this car lives
way beyond that.

Just keeps going

until your brain implodes...

like a collapsing star!

Like the LaFerrari,
the FXX-K has a KERS system

harvesting energy
wasted under braking.

If I brake hard now,

I can feel a kind of pressure
behind my eyeballs,
forcing them forward.

But here,
the system is F1 spec

and when it uses that energy
to boost the performance

of the 6.3-litre V12 engine...

It just bungs you
down the road.

It's not like a normal car
experience of acceleration.

Here we go.
I accelerate in third and...


...I'm 100 yards further
than I thought.

Good Lord.

And then there's
the traction control.

Because Ferrari
doesn't want to kill
its wealthiest customers,

they're some of
the most sophisticated systems

I've ever encountered.

I can just bury the throttle
coming out of turns,

and it just
manages it beautifully.

I suppose part of the thrill
of this car is

building up the courage
to switch them off.

Well, you only live once.



Oh, yes! I'm alive! I'm alive!


Now, this is
a good way to ruin
some very expensive tyres.

changing them is easy,

because your £2 million FXX-K

also comes with its very own
Ferrari pit crew...

just like a modern
Formula One car.

But, unlike
a modern Formula One car,

it doesn't need to comply
with a great big rule book.

In fact, it doesn't need
to comply with the rule book,
well, at all.

Ferrari basically
said to its engineers,

"Knock yourselves out,
do whatever the hell you want.

"Just make it fast.

"Crazy fast!"

And this being Ferrari,

crazy fast on the straights
is just the start.

The true nature of this car
lies in the way it corners.


The faster you go,
the harder it sticks.

It's like a giant magnet.

You can't see it,
but, boy, can you feel it.

It's lawless, savage.

It's motorsport unlimited.

Unbound by rules,

the FXX-K can delve deep
into the dark art of aero.

From that enormous active wing
to the insane diffuser,

its hunger for downforce
crushes the tyres
into the tarmac.

The aero through
this left-hander.

Wow! Into the deck.

Right now, it feels about
the fastest thing
ever made to me.

The performance of the FXX-K
is so extraordinary

it recalibrates
your understanding

of what a car is capable of.

It's wonderful, intoxicating.

It's so cutting-edge, it's...

I got quite a high
water temperature now,

so I need
to just cool it down.

it's high maintenance.

And that means your pit crew
will spend a lot of time

fiddling about with stuff
you don't understand.

Needs a reset on the, er...

And this ultimate Ferrari
thoroughbred is so extreme,

you can't drive it
on the road,

and it doesn't qualify
for any existing race series.


So, as a car,
the FXX-K doesn't
really make sense.

But it's not meant to.

It's not really a car.

What it is a ticket

to the most exclusive
private members club
on the planet.

And this club has one final
members-only benefit.

You see, up to now,
the car has been holding back,

saving power to make sure
its batteries never run flat.

But the FXX-K has something
called Qualify Mode,

and that gives you
all the petrol power

and all the electric power
in one massive hit.

Maximum attack
for one lap only. And, well,

since I've only got
one lap left, well,

you can't take it with you.

1,050 horsepower!

What a car! What a day!

Drink it up. Drink it up,
it's the last lap.

I'll never get
to do that again.

I'm staggered
I've had a chance to
do it in the first place.

When the world's electric,

I think I'll remember this day
more than every other.


Well, I didn't crash.

No, you didn't.
No, what an incredible car.

And I've got to be honest,
you drove the ass off of it.

One tiny point though,
and I don't mean to be picky,

but you know this whole
exclusive club thing?

-Okay, so what
you're saying is,

if you're a very, very special
friend of Ferrari,

you might just be lucky enough
to receive an invitation

to give them £2 million.


And in return,
you get a car that, yeah,

is very fast and very pretty,

but it's essentially
useless, right?

I mean, you can't
drive it on the road,

you can't enter it
in any race series,

you need a team of mechanics
to keep it running...

Also correct.

That's good business.


It is if you're Ferrari.

Now, this is the point
we usually hand the car
over to Stig

to thrash around
our test track,
but today, we can't.

It's just too cold out there.

The FXX-K is on racing slicks
and they just won't get
hot enough to work.

We're sorry.

But we'll try to coax it
back again for a lap
later in the series

when the weather
warms up a bit.

Yes, we will. Rory.

What a car.

And the high horsepower
thrills don't end there,

because later this series,
and I can't believe
I got to do this,

but I drive
the new Renault Twingo.

-Oh, yes. Oh, yes.

Whoo! Yeah.

Okay. Now it is time
to introduce this week's
studio guest.

He's the star of
Atonement, X-Menand Split.

Ladies and gentlemen,
please welcome James McAvoy.



Welcome, welcome.

Now, James, I know
you didn't get a chauffeur

to drop you down today.
You drove yourself, right?

-I did, yes.
-Okay, what did you drive?

I drove my RS3.

Nice, little pocket rocket.

Little ninja, yeah.

-300 plus horsepower there.
-Uh, if you say so.

Yeah, I just know
it goes fast, man.
It goes fast.

So you have
a driver's licence now,

but didn't you drive
for years without one?

This is the weird thing.
I played a car thief
in Shameless

and I had to drive
many beautiful cars

and nobody ever asked me
if I had a driver's licence,

so I didn't,
I didn't offer it up.

I didn't get
a driver's licence
until six years later.

Hang on.
You're painting quite
a picture for us.

Any other bad behaviour
you want to come clean with?

I do actually have
a clean driver's licence,
but I did have a...

I had
a provisional driver's licence
just for riding a 125 scooter

before I grew up
and got a big bike, and, um,

I got 11 points on my
provisional licence.


The guy, the policeman
that took me aside

was like, "I'm probably going
to let you off with it",

and his partner was like
shouting from the car
going like, "No way!

"He's going down!
This is unbelievable!"

So, yeah, they put me
in the back of the car

and made me feel like
a drug dealer.

All right, now,
you didn't just come down here
to enjoy our company,

because, frankly,
who would do that? No, no.

You came here to drive fast
around our track.


And the first thing
that everyone here
should know is that

the original Top Geartrack
is back!


And here's the other thing
you need to know,
we've got a new car.

And after all those Lianas
and Lacettis and C'eeds...

I'm still a big fan
of the C'eed.

That's 'cause you were
quick in it.

We decided it was
high time for something
a bit more exciting,

something rear-wheel drive,
something fast.

That's right,
but not too fast,

'cause we're talking
about celebrities here,
not responsible adults.

Which meant there was
only one car for the job,

and I mean literally
only one car.

Introducing our new
reasonably fast car,

it's the Toyota GT86.


Drive it well
and it's so much fun,

but get it wrong
and you will spin.

I guarantee it.

Yeah, and so do I.
From experience,
I can guarantee it.

Right, so, obviously we're not
going to send you out there

without a little bit
of instruction, so...

Do you remember at school
that one teacher

who really inspired you,
nurtured you, believed in you?

Well, our instructor is
exactly the opposite of that.

He's mad, he's tiny,
his head is very shiny,
it's Chris Harris.


Welcome to the Toyota GT86.

-Your performance
reflects on me.
-All right, mate.

-So you've got
to listen. Okay?

Aim for the 50 metre board.

Don't try and be funny.
Fourth gear.

When I say "brake", brake.


-Listen! Listen, James.
-I am.

Over that way.
Do what you're told.

My hand's over there. Go.
Third gear. Third gear.

Third gear, that's second,
you [BLEEP]. Third! Third!


Argh! Aw!


You have to listen
to the next bit,

otherwise we both end up
being looked for through
dental records.

Fourth gear. Fourth gear.




I wish they'd given me
someone talented
for this first episode,

'cause it would look so good
for my coaching skills.

Oh, my lord.

And over the line.

And stop.

And never [BLEEP]
do that to me again.

[CHUCKLING] You loved it.

-Jesus Christ.
-You loved it!



Well, very nice, very nice.

I'm beginning to see why that
career as a hostage negotiator

never worked out for you.

Okay, seriously, Harris,
that is no way to speak
to our guest.

Absolutely not.

Do you know what?
I kind of liked it.

I like to be treated
rough sometimes.

-That's just between
you and me.

Well, anyway,
we are looking forward
to seeing your timed lap

a little bit later. But first,
here's a question...

something fun for the summer,
what do you buy?

-Er, GT3 RS.
-Okay, Rory?

-McLaren 570?

Yellow Ford Capri
with black stripes on it.

MATT: Okay.

Okay, all good.
All good. All wrong.

Because the most fun
you can have for £150,000
is one of these.


That's a Hobbit caravan.

No. No, that's
a pressure washer.

So it's a pressure washer
for £150,000 Sterling.

What are you going to
wash with that?

I'm going to wash a melon,
a shed and a Volvo.
Check this out.

This is the Karcher Ecomaster
Mach three.

It runs at about
2,800 bar of pressure.

That's... about 40,611 PSI.

Roughly. Exactly.

This cleans stuff really well.

Watch this.


There you have it!


Clean as a whistle!


Am I right? That's good.
That thing's great.

Your handwriting is appalling.

Don't pretend
you're not jealous.

Anyway, moving on,
a couple of months back
the producers told us

to tackle a serious
consumer question.

Specifically this one.

What is the most reliable
new car on sale today?

And we said, "Well,
that's a stupid question.

"New cars can't be reliable.
They're new.

"You have to earn reliability
over lots and lots of miles."

If a car's driven to, say,
the moon and back,
and it's still going,

now that's proof
of reliability.

That's right,
so our producer said,
"All right, you're on."

They told us each
to go buy a car

that had driven
to the moon and back.

Well, the Earth equivalent.

480,000 miles on the clock.
So we did.

And they shipped them off
for a series of
reliability challenges

in the middle of nowhere.

A little place
called Kazakhstan.



Shall we go and find our cars?

CHRIS: Three containers,

RORY: Who wants to go first?

CHRIS: Can I go first?
RORY: Go for it.

You're going to love it.

What do you think he's got?

-Some kind of mental issue.

MATT: It's definitely
a sports car, no?

Yeah, it's got to be.

MATT: A high mileage Ferrari,

RORY: Maserati.

-High mileage Maserati?

Which is, you know,
a horrible idea.

MATT: But Chris
surprised us both.

Oh! That's not Italian.

-That's not Italian at all.

A Volvo?

The Volvo V70.

You want reliability,
you go to Sweden, gentlemen.

You know that.
She's a minter.

I don't want to patronise you,
but you know that
in the Arctic Circle

a reliable car is
the difference between
life and death.

But you're not playing
a housewife in this film.
That's the thing.

Look, I know, it's not going
to set any pulses racing,

but V70s in this generation
are very, very strong.

Manual gearbox
for a bit of fun,

and there's a button in there
that's for heated seats,

and I wonder whether either
of you two have that function.

-Shall we see your car, Matt?

That's really sad, mate.

MATT: Forget Sweden.

You want reliability?

CHRIS: [LAUGHS] He's got it!


CHRIS: Right, here we go.
RORY: He's got a Merc.

Now, he thinks
he's just bought into
the ultimate brand

of reliability,
but little does he know...

Come on now.

-Explain yourself.

MATT: Mercedes, the symbol,

the quintessential symbol
of quality, right?

You go anywhere in the world,

you see these E-classes
just rattling along,

clicking off the miles,
reliability, reliability,

Do you understand the
significance of the colour?

It's like a beige,
kind of like a granny's
living room colour.

You know why it's that colour?

-I don't know, why?
-That was a taxi cab,

that was a German taxi cab,
probably from the Berlin area.


So that's had
the hardest life imaginable.

RORY: While Matt came
to terms with his new taxi...

But it's still an E-class.

RORY: ...I went to fetch mine.

CHRIS: Oh, my God.


CHRIS: What were you thinking?

I don't know what to say.

Look, you want to
talk reliability?

This has got to be
in the conversation, okay?

London taxi,
utterly bombproof.

Come the apocalypse,
there will only be cockroaches
and London cabs.

I don't know
where to begin, Rory.

Look, first of all,

these vehicles are designed
to cover very short distances.

Maybe 40, 50 miles
at a stretch.

Beyond that,
they are purgatory.

Well, that's neither here
nor there.

Also, people visit London
to come and see
the London black cab.

MATT: No, they don't.

They get in that piece of crap
to go see something else.

Tell me the best thing
about this car.

The best thing about this car,
turning circle, 7.62 metres.

I can run rings
around your cars.


CHRIS: But before he could
get in and show us,

a man appeared in an old Lada.

-Thank you.

Wheel bearing's gone.

"You and your high-milers
will now undertake

"a series of
reliability challenges
as you cross Kazakhstan

"to the Baikonur Cosmodrome,

"which is home
to the Soviet Union's
space programme.

"There's a rocket launch
in two days. Be there."

We're going to
a rocket launch?

No, no, no.

Those of us that have a car
that's going to make it
to a rocket launch

are going to a rocket launch.

You two are going to die
on the Steppe.

Why do you have
to be like that?

MATT: Yes, ahead of us
lay the Steppe,

a vast desert
of unforgiving terrain
and extreme temperatures,

certain to test our
high-miler's reliability.

The journey would lead us
to the Baikonur Cosmodrome,

the world's largest,
oldest space launch facility.

And the home of the
Russian space programme.

Sputnik, Yuri Gagarin,

even the first piece of the
International Space Station,

all were launched
from this 3,000 square mile

Russian-controlled facility.

But with only two days
to get there,

we had a lot of ground
to cover.

I was just thinking,
you see a car with
100,000 miles on it,

you think, "Right,
time to get a new one,
that's pretty much worn out."

That's not what we've done,
we've gone for cars

that have
500,000 miles on them,
and mine runs fine.

How does yours run?

My cab hasn't aged a bit.

What did you say?
It was a piece of [BLEEP]?


This taxi is a bit of a shed.

I've just discovered that
my heating doesn't work,

and that's a bad thing,
because in Kazakhstan

it's currently
minus 12 degrees outside.

First impressions,
very impressive.

Doesn't really
rattle or shake,
it's remarkable.

Let's face it,
Volvos are so reliable.

If this thing does break down,

there'd probably be a national
day of mourning in Sweden.

RORY: Guys,
I don't have any heating
whatsoever in my cab.

The sun's out, Rory.
Think positive, think warm.

I'm going to die
of pneumonia, man!


MATT: Heading out of town,
we made a start for Baikonur,

and the bustle
quickly dwindled.

RORY: Look at it, it's just
acres and acres of nothing.

It's like Stoke!

MATT: And, as the road
turned to dirt,

we got the feeling
this might not be the way
to Baikonur after all.

CHRIS: Why are we doing this?
Can't we find another road?

MATT: But then...

Look at that.

CHRIS: That is huge.
MATT: Thanks, Chris.

We had stumbled across
our first opportunity

for a spot of competition.

RORY: Are you thinking
what I'm thinking?

MATT: I think I am thinking
what you're thinking.

That looks like
a race track to me.

CHRIS: I think
we need to get it on.

MATT: So, our first test
of reliability would be
an impromptu quarry race

down to the bottom,
back to the top.

First past
the cow's head, wins.

Gentlemen, may the best man
and his machine win.

Come on, little black cab.

Three, two, one... Go!

Oh, that's hopeless.
I've just been overtaken
by a bloody London taxi!

I've got better traction
than Chris! Yeah!

Oh, Matt's quick, though.


Ah, he's in front.

Come on, chase him down,
chase him down.

Oh, he's gaining.

RORY: Come on, come on.

Yes! Yes, yes, yes!

Ha, ha!

Oh, Rory with the big move
up the inside.

We're in front!
The little black cab
is in front!

Oh, get out of the way!

MATT: Hey, hey,
watch the paint!

Come on, baby,
come on, hold it together.

Okay, we're coming
around the loop.

Ah, the turning circle
coming in.

More than handy there.

79 horsepower!
Naught to 60 in 21 seconds.


And we've destroyed the Merc
and the Volvo.

Oh, this is hopeless.

Slow up the hill.
I got him, I got him.

RORY: Matt's gaining,
Matt's gaining.

Here we go.

Ah, no!

MATT: Thank you!


Right, come on, old girl.

RORY: Here comes Chris.

I'm on the defensive.

Hold him off, hold him off!
Hold him off! Hold him off!


Matt's slowing down.

What the...

What the [BLEEP]!



Come on! Yes!

Ha, ha, ha!

Not quite the end
I'd expected.


MATT: Well, what happened?
CHRIS: What do you mean,
what happened?

CHRIS: You weren't moving.
MATT: I lost drive.

Coming up the hill,
the transmission
kind of let go.

I'll tell you what happened.

I just won the race
in the black cab!

CHRIS: Honestly,
I'm disappointed.

I was coming past you,
and you were stationary.

-You weren't coming past me.
-I was. I was pushing
you up the hill.

No, I was putting
the moves on you,
I was blocking you.

So you reckon you were not
being pushed up the hill?

I was defensive driving
the hell out of you.

You weren't aware
of the fact that you were
being pushed up the hill?

Yeah, but that was
enough to stay ahead!

You would have pushed me
over the finish line!

CHRIS: I'm feeling
slightly guilty though.

This car has lived for
13 years and 570,000 miles.

And I've had it 42 miles.

[LAUGHS] 42 miles!

The last one was probably
the most special.

-Meanwhile, pristine,
good as new.

I can change that
quite quickly for you.


MATT: Our quarry race
had taken its toll,

but after a few hours,
we were back on the road.

Your Volvo looks
like the Terminator
near the end of the film.

CHRIS: I removed a quarter
of the front of the car

and the warning system
simply tells me,
"Bulb failure, dipped beam".

That's how tough this car is.
That's Nordic strength.

And also, the airbox
has been a bit squashed

which means it now sounds like
a full-house Audi Quattro.

So, actually,
I've improved the car.


It does sound good.

That is nice.

CHRIS: Ba-a-ah!

MATT: At last, we were
on the road to Baikonur

and the producers had told us
to make a stop
at the next town,

a place called Kyzylorda.

So, we pressed on,

and Chris took it upon himself
to keep us entertained.

Were you to drive from
one side of Kazakhstan
to the other,

that's the same as driving
from London to Istanbul.

It's basically
the size of Western Europe.

Is it really?

On a smaller scale,
this country was the origin
of the apple tree.

So, the apple was
invented here.

Was it really?

The Kazakhs were also
the first people
to domesticate the horse,

the humble horse.

RORY: But, before Chris
could go full corduroy,

we arrived in Kyzylorda and,
at the local sports ground,

we discovered
apples and horses
weren't all they had invented.


CHRIS: They were playing
a game called Kokpar.
Basically, that's goat polo.

It's a professional sport
in Kazakhstan,

and the aim is to get
the goat carcass in the goal.

I got to say, this is, uh,
right up there with
some of the, um,

grossest shit I've ever seen.


CHRIS: As we wondered
what else the afternoon
had in store,

a challenge arrived.

It says, "You will now take on
some local high-mile heroes

"in a simple game of tag.

"If you tag another car,
they're out.

"If you get tagged,
you're out.

"Last car driving
is the winner."

MATT: Apparently, goat polo
was just a warm up.

And, as we took to the field,

the atmosphere in the stands
was electric.

To prove which
of our high-milers

was the most rugged
performance machine,

we'll be going up against
not just each other

but three steppe-hardened
Lada workhorses.

Proven benchmarks
of reliability...


Driven by a crack squad
of local talent.

So, with all six cars
spaced out around the track,

it was time for tag.

Whoop, whoop, whoop.
Let's go racing!


RORY: Here we go!

Come on, baby.
Let's do this one for London.

Oh, that Lada is mine!

Hey, little red Lada,
I'm coming after you.

They're surprisingly quick,
these Ladas,
these local hands.

I think I've got the
Kazakhstani rallying champion
in front of me.

With the Volvo and taxi
both struggling
in the early stages...

[ENGINES REVVING] was Matt's Mercedes
making all the moves.

I got this red guy, I got him,
I got him!



Matt's got the red Lada.

But Matt had forgotten
to check his mirrors.

-MATT: Damn!

I'm out. I'm out.

Having taken out the Merc,

the little blue Lada
had a taste for blood.

I'm going to hit the brake
and let him fly past me!

He's missed!
The blue Lada has missed!

But then,
it wasn't the blue Lada
I needed to worry about.

Oh, Harris is behind me.

No, no, no, no!

-Give you a little tap, Rory.

Oh, Harris has got me!

A slight bonnet issue now,
a slight bonnet issue.


With one increasingly battered
Volvo left in the running,

it should have been
easy pickings
for the two remaining Ladas,

but Harris doesn't
give up easily.

I'm on the blue Lada now.

Come on, Harris,
get him, get him, get him,
get him, get him!

I'm going to tap him,
I'm going to tap him.


A bit harsh, but there we go.
He needed to know I was there!

Right, come on.
This is the endgame.

RORY: He's chasing down
the last Lada right now.

I think he might do it.

I can't actually see anything.
Where is he?

Ooh, there he is. Nudge.

RORY: He's got him!



Victory. Finally,
the Volvo gets something.

MATT: Way to go, Harris,
all right!

RORY: Why is he always
finishing races
with his bonnet up?

Oh, I... It's an aero device,
gives me a bit of extra
front downforce.


MATT: A couple more screws
in the bonnet this time,
I think.

Yeah, I think so.
We'll get there. We'll get
the old girl to Baikonur.

I want to see a rocket go off.

RORY: To Baikonur!


You know, honestly,
before that trip,

I had no idea
that Kazakhstan was real.

I thought it was
one of those made-up places

like Timbuktu or Guernsey.


Those are both real places.

-I know.

Okay, James, just to recap.
What happened there,

for everyone's benefit
and yours, is that

the taxi won the race around
the quarry. All right!

-Do the dance. Yeah, yeah?

CHRIS: Don't do the dance,
don't do the dance!

I won the race around
the goat sacrifice temple.

Yeah, and Matt's Mercedes...

No, no, no, don't,
don't do it.

Don't bad-mouth the Mercedes.

Don't do it, because
we're in the presence

of another lover
of classic Merc, right?

-Yeah, yeah, yeah.
-Am I right? Now, is it true

that you once owned
Idi Amin's Mercedes SL?

[LAUGHS] Erm...

I was in a movie called
The Last King of Scotland,

and at the end of that movie,
they gave me this car
that I drove in,

which I didn't know
at the time

but it had belonged
to somebody

and Idi Amin had given it
to that person.

So they said at the end of
the movie I could have it.

But, again, I didn't
have a driver's licence

and I didn't really fancy
driving it back from Uganda.

So I left it.
I just left it there.

I think they gave it
to my driver,

he was a nice guy called Fred.

Nice. Way to go, Fred.

Right, now,
it's time to find out
how you went around the track

-in our new reasonably
fast car.
-Come on.

How did it go out there?

Well, I don't think
it went that well.
But it was a tonne of fun.

Well, what do you think?

-Let's see how you did.

CHRIS: So, here we go, then.
Soaking wet track for James.

Off the line.
Traction control on.

Big balls. Big, big balls,
that's all you need.

I don't disagree with you.

Coming up towards
the first corner.

Wetter than a waterfall
in a monsoon.

This braking zone's tough.

There's a direction change
and also a surface change.

The grip levels
there are terrible.

Best to stay on the track,
I find, there!

Shut it!

CHRIS: Blending left,
turning right into Chicago.

The inside line
is off the frame
at the moment so,

actually, there's grip
around the outside.

Come on!

this is the long drag
toward Hammerhead.

Big braking zone...
You triggered
the warning lights,

you were braking so hard,
that must be good.

The car's going to
oversteer a bit, is it?
Yeah, there it goes.


CHRIS: I'd like to say you
caught that. It wasn't,
the electronics caught it.

And again! That was
a mid-gear change slide.

That's just showing off!

Now we've got
this fast right here,

down towards
the follow-through.


Yeah! Whoo!

CHRIS: You think you're
saving that, you're not.
The computer's doing it.

Through the follow-through.
That looks terrifying.

-Oh, my Lord. It looks...

CHRIS: You're like a sort of
Scottish Ari Vatanen,
aren't you?

Now, coming hard
into second to last,
does he make the apex?

He does. He clips it.

-That's so slippery, isn't it?
-Yeah, it's horrible.

CHRIS: Through Gambon.
Nowhere near the racing line.

And over the line.

-Thank you.
-Good effort.


Can I just say,
before we go anywhere,

it was so slippery
out there today.

-It really was treacherous.

But it was a lot of fun
because of it.

RORY: Oh, yeah,
it was a good run.

Okay, new car means
a new lap board.

We've already had a test day
where we sent
a bunch of celebs

out in the GT 86
to lay down some markers.

You can watch how they did
over on Extra Gear.

But the fastest time so far
is one minute 39.5

from Olympic
double gold-winning
gymnast Max Whitlock.

Oh, I loved his
pommel routine,
did you ever see that?

-Elegant... Anyway, all right.

James, and Chris, because,
frankly, this is your fault

if he doesn't go
straight to the top,
you were his instructor.

All right. Feeling confident?

Mmm, not really.
A little bit...

-Come on!
-Go on, show me.

All right.
You did it in the wet,
so it's a wet time.

-One minute... 47.1.
-Yes... Yes...

-Oh! That's not bad.
That's not bad.

That's not bad.

-Thank you. That's not bad.
-That's awesome.
Not bad at all.

Right underneath
Ore Oduba there.

-A fine effort.
-I'm the only one in the wet.

That's good. That is good.

Only one in the wet.

I think you guys will have
a lot of fun this season

with the celebrities
in that car

because you just
can't control it

like you could that Cee'd
that we both drove.

When you say "fun",

-do you mean death?


All right, James, thank you
so much for coming down
and playing with us.

Ladies and gentlemen,
James McAvoy!

-Thank you!

Now, time to return
to our high-mile challenge.

Earlier on, the three of us
each had bought a car

that had driven
to the moon and back.

And we were
crossing Kazakhstan

for an appointment
with a big rocket.

MATT: We awoke to the chill of
another morning in Kazakhstan.

And Chris noticed
that overnight
I had been busy.

CHRIS: Matt, what's going on
with the back of your car?

Was it abducted last night
by a band of amateur
scaffolding people?

You know that little love tap
you gave me

that lifted
the ass-end of the car
up about four feet?

Well, that's me being cautious

and just trying to preserve
the rear end of this Mercedes.

Despite the previous
day's trials,
all three of our high-milers

were still in the hunt
for Baikonur.

But since we had the place
to ourselves,

Rory had an idea
to see whose car
was holding together best.

How about
a top speed challenge?

But here's the twist,
this is all about reliability.

So I think we should find out
whose car gets closest

to their manufacturer's
claimed top speed.

-MATT: That sounds good.
-Chris, you're up first.

And the Volvo's top speed?

125 mph.

Three, two, one, go for it!



-It's pretty aggressive.

That's a half a million mile
clutch he's working with.


CHRIS: Come on, Volvo!

Fourth, come on.

That's 90.

If Volvos are as reliable
as he says they are,

this should be no problem.

I'm not even 100.

Not even 100, come on!

How are the kids?

-Good. Yours?
-Yeah, not too bad.

-All right.

How did we do?

I blame you
for what just happened there.

I've got terrible aero
and no power 'cause
my airbox has moved

because you stopped
your vehicle

on the first challenge,
and I hit you.

-That's my fault?
-Yeah, that's your fault.

-Who hit who?
-Who stopped?

-Who hit who?
-Who stopped?

Who hit who?

I couldn't have hit the thing
if it hadn't stopped.

If there's a policeman
standing there,
you'd be in trouble.

Do they have policemen
at race circuits?

It wasn't a race circuit,
we were in a hole
in the ground.


Look, the news is, 104 mph,

which is not good enough
'cause this thing should do
124, 125.

So I'm 20 mph back.
So, go and do your worst,

I'm going to lose.

MATT: Next up,
my European E-Class,

with its 180 kph top speed.


There's 100.

There's 120.

Did they really invent apples
in Kazakhstan?

Yeah, apparently.

I just think,
if they invented the apple,

then we should try
an actual Kazakhstani apple.

I'd love to have an apple.

MATT: 155.

Russet's that sort of
amber-coloured apple,

delicious things.

The juice from them
makes a very good drink.

Come on, then, Hans Stuck,
what's the number?

Take a guess.

CHRIS: 160.

-Wow, on the money.

160, that's about
100 miles an hour.

So, by getting within about
12 mph of my top speed,
I had edged Chris.

But I'd left the door open
for Rory's 81 mph taxi.


-Come on, black cab.
-Takes off like a shot.

RORY: Forty.


He was hardly
the figure of humility
when he won last time,

what's he going to be
like this time?

81 mph.

Ahhh! Yeah!



It just gets better with time.

Like a fine wine.


Give me the good news
or the bad news.

Well, I'm afraid it's bad news
for you, but good news for me.

I managed 84 mph.

Three mph more
than the manufacturer's
quoted top speed.


-84 mph.

Hey, come on,
you got to give it up
for the taxi, right?

-I guess so, yeah.

Jump back in your cars,
see if you can keep up.

Nice one...

MATT: A-hole.

I didn't expect the taxi
to go faster than it did

when it left the factory.

That's amazing.

MATT: With begrudging respect
for the black cab,
we headed on.

And before long,
I made a discovery.

Hey, there's
a David Hasselhoff cassette
in the stereo.

Check it out.

♪ I've been looking
for freedom

♪ Since I left
my home town... ♪

He's been looking for freedom,
but it can't be found.

But as the hours dragged on...

I'm finding the flatness
quite imposing now.

MATT: You wouldn't want to
break down out here,
would you?

We were told to head
to our last overnight stop...

So that's it,
that's quite literally
the end of the road.

MATT: ...located somewhere
within the vast emptiness

that surrounded
the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

That's a dried up salt bed.

MATT: Wow!

That's like
Kazakhstan's Bonneville.

MATT: Driving on
into the dark, inky gloom,

eventually we arrived
at our overnight stop

where our final
challenge awaited.

CHRIS: Oh, hello.
MATT: Oh hey.
What does it say?

It says, "Tomorrow
you drive to Baikonur.

"You must reach
the border gate by 2:00 p.m.

"At 9:00 a.m. tomorrow,
your mileage trips
will be reset.

"The winner is the high-miler
that racks up the most miles

"over the subsequent
five hours.

"Only the winning car
will attend the launch.

"The two losing cars will be
sentenced to hard labour."

All right, okay.

♪ I'm looking for freedom...

You know what I'm going to do
when I get home?

I'm going to dig out
my Hoff collection.

You should go to a doctor.

With the rest of the night
to consider our strategies,

the next morning, we awoke
to a tantalising sight.

RORY: Oh, wow!
MATT: Oh, yeah, look at that!

MATT: Yes,
the Baikonur Cosmodrome
was almost within reach.

But with our trip metres
covered and reset,

first there was
a challenge to win.

And Chris was late.


What have you done?

CHRIS: Mind your own
business, Matthew.

All right, all right.
Most miles when we get
to Baikonur wins.

Three, two,

one, let's rock.

What's going on with Rory?
Why's he not moving?

I don't know,
and maybe the taxi
finally packed it in.

RORY: So, clearly I'm not
going to beat those guys
in a head-to-head race.

I need to be smart
about this challenge,

and approach things
with a bit more cunning.

MATT: A cagey start
from the others,

but my plan was simple,

more speed means more miles.

The easy way to make your car
quicker is to lose weight.

Seats are gone,

door panels gone.

And I figured the best place
to take my new
superlight racer

was back
to Kazakhstan's Bonneville.

Even if that did mean...


...another lengthy,
off-road drive to reach it.

Meanwhile, in Harris' Volvo...

Ha-ha! A road!

MATT: Chris was heading
for a nearby town

with his own
hare-brained strategy.

Speed is in the mind,
so to change my mind-set,

I've invoked Volvo's
racing history here.

CHRIS: You remember?

The year was 1994
and British touring car legend

Rickard Rydell debuted
the Volvo 850 Estate.

Surely the coolest
estate car ever.

Add to that a perfectly safe
range-extending fuel tank

and you have the ultimate
high-mileage maker.

I just needed somewhere
to use it.

So, I did a bit of
research last night.

There is
an airfield near here,
I don't quite know where,

but I know it's nearby.

The second thing
I did last night
was to learn a Russian phrase.

"Where's the airfield?"

Here we are,
I'll ask this woman here.


No, she didn't want to know.

She didn't want to...

RORY: Now, while the others
wasted valuable time

finding places
they could up the pace...

Into gear.

Now for some revs.

I opted for a short cut.

MATT: All right, this is it.

Let the high mileage begin.



No, that's not happening.

Though I swear I heard
one of them say,
"Is that Rickard Rydell?"




That was it. We're on.
This direction.


Now, this is what
I call easy miles.

Nice and soft terrain,
not too hard on the car.


What the hell was that?

Something's come wildly loose,

I don't know if it's that bar
on the back or what.

In fact, it was worse.

And with no time to lose,

the Mercedes needed
the delicate touch
of a professional.

Saved a little more weight.

RORY: After a slow start
over in the Volvo,

Rickard Rydell had finally
found his airfield.

100 miles an hour.

[LAUGHS] What a place!

High banking at Daytona.

I really like this car.

She may be old,
she may be almost worn out,

but she's got heart,
she really does.

After three hours of flat-out,
lightweight racing though...

The fuel light just came on. was time to start
the long drive back.

Okay, Baikonur!

Now, Rory was also
running low on fuel,
but he had thought ahead.

Oh, [BLEEP].


Oh, that is dead.

That's dead, isn't it?
That's definitely dead.

Oh, man!

CHRIS: Back in my
range-extended Volvo,
things were looking tasty.

I'm averaging a lot
of miles an hour here.

A lot of miles an hour.

And while I was
piling on the miles,

Matt wasn't.

All right, finally
a little bit of smooth road.


Oh, spoke too soon.

CHRIS: But then, somehow

the cab was back.


How is this car still running?

I love this car.

We're a team.

Whatever happens,
we're a team.

And at last...

This is it, this is it.

This team reached the entrance
to the Cosmodrome.

I'm the first one here,

so I may as well do
a few of my legendary
tiny turning circles.

Every mile counts.
Every mile counts.

And with just
a few minutes left...

Hey, there you are! was a desperate fight
to add distance.

I can add some miles too, man,
two can play at that game.


Where's Harris?


Rory, Rory, that's it.
Two o'clock.

Two o'clock,
the party is over.

-How's your head? Dizzy?
-[LAUGHS] Dizzy.

That is becoming
his signature look.

Maybe he can't see
where he's going.

-How did you do?

Well, quietly confident,
but let's see what happens.

Who's this?

RORY: Oh, he must be
checking the mileage.

He's got a lovely wrist action
on that ratchet.

-Thank you,
thank you very much.
-Okay, Matt.

Okay, I have here the results.

In third place,
with 211 miles,

Mr Chris Harris.



In second place,
with 284 miles,

-Mr Matt LeBlanc.
-Come on!

-That's right.

CHRIS: Say it, say it.

In first place,
with 329 miles,

Mr Rory Reid
in the black taxi.

MATT: Way to go, man.

Hang on, hang on,
look at this.

Oh, really?
Is that what's happening?

The losers lose their cars.

MATT: So we had our winner.

And as the others set off
toward their new life
of service

on the Kazakh Steppe...

I'd become rather fond
of my Volvo, Matt.

MATT: Yeah, I'm going
to miss that old car.

...the truth is,
all our high-milers
had proven their worth.

And now, all that remained
were the last few miles

into the heart
of the Cosmodrome
and the launch site.

This would be the black cab's
victory lap.

-Where you headed?
-Rocket launch?

Jump in.

MATT: And it gave us a chance
to consider something.

You see, to most people,
cars are just a tool,
a run-around.

You might run one for 60, 70,

even 100,000 miles and think
it's had its day.

But the truth is,
it could do so much more.

Back in the '50s,
the US and Soviet Union's
fierce battle

for global engineering
dominance propelled
mankind into space.

The Cold War thawed
just for a moment

as the world stood
in collective wonder
at what we could achieve.

It was an event
that marked one of
the most intense periods

of technological development
in human history,

and it brought us to today,
where right now,

sat on your driveway,
you could have a car,

a car, that's been
so well-engineered,

it'll go the distance
to the moon and back,
and beyond.


I still can't get that
Hasselhoff song
out of my head.



Amazing cars, indestructible.

Okay, so, Rory, we know
why our cars aren't here,

they're doing hard labour
in Kazakhstan.

But where's your
little black cab?

Did you not want to
drive it back the 3,000 miles
from Baikonur?

I would have loved to have
driven my taxi home,

but it had a higher calling,
a public duty.

Check this out.

See that?


That's been immortalised,
okay? It's a symbol of hope.

Yeah, you know,
that is really nice.

The good men and women
of Baikonur,

they can look up
at your humble taxi,

symbol of Britain, of London,

and think,
"Thank God I don't have
to drive one of those."

Don't hate a winner, Matt.

-Don't do the dance,
don't do the dance.
-No dancing.

Okay, next week,
convertible supercars
in the USA,

the Alfa Romeo Giulia and
one very broken windscreen.

-Thanks for watching.
-Yeah, we'll see you all
next week.

ALL: Good night.

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