Top Gear (2002–…): Season 7, Episode 6 - Episode #7.6 - full transcript
Jeremy tests the Volkswagen Golf R32 and the BMW 130i. Richard and James are having a time trial race at the Prescott Hill Climb Course by pitting an Austin-Healey Spite (representing the ...
--CLARKSON: Tonight, can a Mazda go faster than a dog?
Can a frog go faster than a Peugeot?
That isn't straight!
And can I go faster than myself?
Hello and welcome to the Christmas Special of Top Gear.
And, to flesh that out a bit, here's our resident elf.
Yes. And what makes our Christmas Special so special
is that there isn't any Christmas stuff in it.
No. What we do have is this 1 Series BMW.
Now, they fitted it with a 3-litre engine and called it the 130i and that's fine.
But Volkswagen has also put a big engine in its Golf.
So...which is best?
At first, that looks like a tricky question.
They're both the same sort of size, they both have six-cylinder engines,
they both have austere, black German interiors,
and they'll both do 155 mph.
So, what happens in a drag race?
They both do naught-to-60 in 6.2 seconds.
And as we get to the quarter-mile mark...
Well, here's a surprise. It's a dead heat.
You can't even choose between them on styling.
Yes, the BMW has the face of Fu Manchu and the profile of a van,
but the Golf's not exactly a svelte beauty either.
The thing is, though, one of these cars is very good and one isn't.
So, the BMW.
They talk at some considerable length about
how the 1 Series is the only small hatchback you can buy
with rear-wheel drive.
(SARCASTICALLY) "Wow," you may be thinking. "Wow!"
But, actually, it does show.
It's a very balanced car, this, very focused, and um,
very, very good at doing this.
Oh! And of course it's very, very slippery today, which makes it even more fun!
The front wheels do the steering, the rear ones are doing the propulsion.
I'm multitasking here and that's a good thing.
I haven't had as much fun as this in a small car since the...
Well, since the '80s,
the days of the Chevette HS and the Lotus Sunbeam.
As a driver's car, then,
this is very, very good.
So, you might imagine that the people's car can't possibly compete.
Um... No, actually.
You see, if anything, the engine in the Golf is even better.
It's a 3.2-litre V6 and listen to it!
That is a great noise.
It doesn't have quite as much power as the one you get in the BMW,
but there's more torque, which makes it feel more...
Oh, yeah, this is the full Sunday roast, this one.
To get all this grunt on the road, the Golf has four-wheel drive.
So there's not tail-out malarkey.
It grips so hard that the tyres are squealing even on a wet road.
This thing hangs on in there long after
the BMW's gone off to play games in the woods.
It is epic!
That said, the BMW is more fun.
And if the track is dry when we give these cars to The Stig,
I really think it'll be quicker.
So far, then, it's looking good for the BMW.
And there's more.
Even though this is the sporty version, with the sporty suspension,
it rides more smoothly than the diesel version I drove earlier in the year.
And under here, look, there's a little slot that you can plug your iPod into,
if you can find a shop that sells the right lead... Which I can't.
Probably because I've been looking in Dorothy Perkins.
But then, I'm afraid, everything starts to go horribly wrong.
You see, a worrying amount of the toys are optional extras.
You even have to pay £1,700 for the M Sport pack,
which, so far as I can see, gives you some perforated leather on the handbrake
and lots of M badges.
But not much else.
The actual on-the-road price of this car is £31,000.
That is a colossal amount of money.
Especially as it isn't even a proper hatchback.
I mean, look, they give it back doors, but I have no idea why
because look at that legroom. Who is gonna be able to fit in here? Look.
Even Hammond would struggle.
And don't think that they've pinched space from there so it can have a big boot
You couldn't even get a tortoise in there.
As a practical way of moving your family and your belongings around,
the 130, then, works about as well as a goat.
Park this on your drive and your neighbours won't think,
"Mmm, that's an expensive car, he must be doing well."
They'll think, "Mmm, that's an expensive car, he must be bonkers!"
So, now let's look at the R32.
It's more discreet than the BMW, it looks like any other Golf.
It's also more comfortable than the BMW,
which makes it an outstanding long-distance tourer.
And if I have to say or be shot,
I'd say it's better made than the BMW as well.
All day long, the BMW has been flashing warning lights at me on the dash
about failed this and broken that.
I felt like Jack Lemmon in The China Syndrome.
But in this, all is well.
And then there's the big one.
Look, I fit in the back easily! Tons of space to spare.
And if you peer through here,
then you find it has the big boot. So if you get a 5-door one of these,
it's as spacious and as practical as a barn.
And the cost?
Well, a 5-door Golf with sat-nav and a DSG flappy paddle gearbox
That's £4,000 less than the BMW.
So, there you are. These cars aren't the same at all.
The ugly, cramped and ridiculously expensive BMW
beats the Volkswagen on a track,
but the Golf hammers it
-That's very good. -Yeah.
And that's not.
No. But I have to say,
I really don't get, I really don't get the price of this car. £31,000.
'Cause if you want to go quickly, then you could get
the mother of all Subaru Imprezas for that.
Absolutely. And the other thing as well,
if you're not interested in having any space in the back
and if you're planning on buying one of these,
-plainly you're not. -You're not.
Why not buy the 3-litre Z4? You know, the two-seater convertible?
Why do this? It's mad!
But anyway, we must now find out how fast this goes round our track.
And the Golf as well for that matter.
So, we must hand them to our tame racing driver.
Some say that his heart is in upside down
and that his teeth glow in the dark.
All we know is he's called The Stig.
Okay, away he goes. Lots of wheel spin off the line,
but then it is a powerful car for its size.
Down to the first corner.
Ooh, flicking into oversteer, Stig's already having to work hard.
Much neater on the exit, though, look at that.
What baroque classic is it this week?
Sounds like Tchaikovsky.
Chicago, actually looking quite understeery there on the way in.
Hard on the power now, kicking the tail out a little bit on the exit.
Into the Hammerhead, you can see The Stig having to correct
all the way through there. Fighting understeer here.
That is a surprise.
Now, here's the follow-through.
What a lot of guts, this car, should be pretty quick through here.
Ooh, God, it is! Two corners left, of course.
Rather unruly on the way in. Into Gambon now.
Quite messy, he's off-road!
And across the line in 1.31.9.
Now the Golf. Front wheels spinning off the line now,
before the computer shoves more power to the back.
Let's see how it handles the first corner.
Look at that, no drama at all.
Very tidy indeed.
Up to Chicago, still neat.
Notice the rear wheel just cocking a little bit there
in classic Golf style.
You've got a very heavy V6 up front, will it make it understeer a little bit?
But you can see the car pulling back into line
as the electronics shuffle the power around.
Blasting through the follow-through.
Now, Stig said he was impressed with the R32's grunt,
but can it come close to the 130? I'm not sure it can.
There's one corner left now, Gambon.
Sliding a bit wide. And across the line!
Okay, now, here's the BMW, look, and it's 1.31.9.
The Golf, 1.30.4. So it goes there.
-(AUDIENCE EXCLAIMS) -It is quicker. And do you know what?
That means I was wrong, for the first time since 1974.
-(LAUGHTER) -It wasn't just quicker than the BMW.
Look at this. It's three seconds quicker than the old Golf R32.
I'm telling you, that car is every bit as good as that one is bad.
Now, we're not gonna do any news on the show this week
because, well, the whole motor industry is on holiday
and anyway, we have our Top Gear--award ceremony coming up a bit later on.
So, in the meantime, here is a Top Gear battle of the generations.
--MAY: Meet the Austin Healey Sport Club.
They like tweeds and beards and beer with soil floating in it.
And they think car design peaked in, ooh, about 1968.
--HAMMOND: Meet Absy and his crew.
They like hoodies and trainers and Argos jewellery.
And they think the ideal number of speakers in a car is about 68.
--MAY: These two groups are the chalks and the cheeses
in the world of the different car cultures.
And we've brought them together to settle an argument.
You see, I think this modern obsession with horsepower is absolutely idiotic.
The simple, light, well-sorted classic will be more than a match
for some youth car with 5,000 horsepower and a big stereo.
Yes, and I think the opposite.
So the only way to settle this is with a duel,
and that duel will take place here,
at the famous Prescott Hill Climb course in Gloucestershire.
It's one of the most prestigious tracks in Britain,
the motor-racing equivalent of Vera Lynn.
Over the years, its corners have been tackled by the likes of Stirling Moss,
Peter Collins and Graham Hill.
So what in the name of all that's holy would the ghosts of Collins and Hill make
of this lot?
And here comes my car now.
MAY: I'm sort of guessing that's not your kind of thing.
MAN 1: No. MAN 2: No, not at all.
MAN 1: What colour is that? National Health Service green?
If we had heavy snow, it would be good for clearing that, wouldn't it?
--HAMMOND: Well, you can mock, beard brigade,
but this Peugeot 306 is one of the finest modified cars in the country,
with over £26,000 worth of mods, including three TVs,
a PlayStation and over 54 inches of subs.
And now, representing a time when subs were something we used to fight the Germans,
behold the majesty of the Austin Healey...
-Which has stalled. -(MEN LAUGHING)
This is a 1961 Frogeye Sprite.
-This is what you've got to beat. -Marvellous.
Does it go any lower than that? Or is that it?
No, the suspension doesn't move. It's fixed.
--MAY: In this battle of arthritis against acne,
it's Hammond's group who have the power advantage.
That's a 3-litre V6, roughly about 200 rate.
That's probably about five times what he's got over there.
What do you reckon naught-to-60 time would be?
-About 6.2, I reckon. -That's all right.
You've probably got a more powerful stereo than he has car.
MAY: By contrast, the geriatric Healey sports a modest 130 horsepower,
almost 100 less than the Peugeot.
What about the top speed?
Well, again, the gearing would probably bring that down to about 95.
That's not so good, to be honest.
And the classic car boys were worried about the fearsome brakes
on the max power car.
Still, we didn't win two world wars by standing around moaning.
So, some serious fettling began to make the Healey lighter
and more agile.
Marvellous. Thank you very much.
Meanwhile, over in the youth centre, things weren't so hectic.
You've got four-screen, this is the best bit.
That's a colour camera as well.
HAMMOND: Now, this isn't necessarily gonna help us go faster.
MAN 3: Not really.
HAMMOND: Both cars were ready for their timed runs up the hill.
We just needed an independent driver.
Someone who follows no car culture,
who has no age, who has no friends to text, and no real ale preference.
MAY: Not a completely convincing start. Do you mind me saying that?
-Sounds good, though. -Sounds great.
--HAMMOND: Sure enough, it was quick on the straights,
but this mobile Halfords paid the price on the corners.
It's a bit "James Bond film", isn't it?
MAN 1: 59!
MAN 2: That's pretty good. MAN 3: It's not bad.
--HAMMOND: That was enough to worry the Healey chaps.
So, are you gonna wind yours up and give it a shot, then?
That's a good time, but not unbeatable.
MAY: So, the gauntlet's thrown down for the antique roadshow.
That weight... It really did leap away.
MAY: Yes, this isn't the coolest The Stig has ever looked,
but in the Healy he was in good shape through the corners.
Oh, oh! Getting close.
The Healey blitzed the last two turns,
but would it beat 59.26?
Yes, the beards had won it by a whisker.
Age, experience, tweed and a little bit of facial hair
is what it takes to win at hill climbing.
I know which one I'd rather go home in, the one with a roof and a windscreen.
Can you believe it?
We must now move on, because it's time to put a star
in our reasonably priced car.
Now, there is evidence to suggest that my guest tonight is gay,
but he says he isn't. Much like Richard Hammond.
So please welcome the top half of Little Britain, David Walliams!
What an honour!
I wanna get this cleared up right away, if I may,
you're not actually gay, are you?
-Well, I... -(LAUGHTER)
Depends who's asking!
-Me. -Well, no, I wouldn't have sex with you, no.
-(LAUGHTER) -So that's clear. You're not gay.
I'm not gay either, I'd just like to say there.
A lot of people think I am because I don't like football.
-But you don't like football either, do you? -No.
Well, I don't dislike it, I'm just not really interested in it.
I just think, can't they decide what team is the best and just leave it there.
It seems they have to go on year by year, I don't understand.
Didn't you meet a footballer the other day and you had no clue who he was?
Well, I only knew who he was because he's married to Louise Nurding,
who used to be in Eternal.
-Jamie Redknapp, is that right? -(AUDIENCE AGREES)
I was driving into... Ooh, driving! We're on to driving already.
I was driving into a car park, and he was coming out.
And it was actually the night after the Comedy Awards last year
and he said, "Well done on those awards!" I went, "Oh, thank you."
And I didn't know what to say to him. 'cause I didn't know...
Did he still play? What team is he on.
So I just went, "Well, keep kicking those balls!"
"Why can't I be a man? Why don't I know these things?"
Because Little Britain--now is just off the scale, isn't it?
It's the most phenomenal success. It's so well written.
That's kind of you to say, 'cause no one ever really mentions that.
You and Matt do all of it, don't you?
Yeah, well, actually in the third series, um,
we had some contributions from a couple of other writers, but...
And the other thing as well I've noticed is that you can now...
I seems to me you can push the boundaries of comedy now
further than probably ever before.
But it's like the more you get convinced you can't say certain things,
you can't have old ladies vomiting whenever black people are mentioned,
and then there they are vomiting whenever black people are mentioned.
Well, that is of course an exaggeration about people's racist views,
but I think that's the one people dislike the most, actually,
because I think people actually don't like to see people vomit.
Yeah. Jimmy Carr is another one that makes jokes out of anything.
-He's a comedian, isn't he? -Yeah. He will make a joke out of absolutely anything.
-Where is he? -Oh, he's in the audience, now?
He's there, look. He comes every week.
Come sit here, Jimmy Carr, come on.
No, he was very nervous that he was gonna be knocked off the top.
Try and stay involved.
You've invited him up. Ladies and gentlemen, Jimmy Carr is here!
You will make a joke out of anything, won't you?
Yeah, pretty much, yeah. Why not?
-Who's "Blind Man"? -He was a man who was blind.
Have you seen this show before?
I caught the end credits last week.
I thought I should watch and I forgot.
Thing is, they said, "Will you come on? We'll lend you a DB9 for the weekend."
And I said yes and I had the DB9,
then I totally forgot that I had to do it.
Do you know who he is?
-How was the DB9? Jeremy Clarkson, I'm straight. -I do know who he is.
I like Jeremy Clarkson.
Well, that's fine. Thank God for that.
Have you found that people who say they're straight rarely are?
-He says it a lot, doesn't he? -Yeah. (LAUGHING)
I'm just saying you made a big point of getting changed in front of us earlier.
And at one point, he was flicking me with his towel.
-He did look aroused at one point. -That was not his towel.
That's some sort of fungal growth.
I wasn't. I was watching the shower scene from Top Gun--again.
As you well know, I watch that before coming out here.
-Before coming out? What? -(LAUGHTER)
I gather you're giving him advice about what car to buy.
I gave him a little bit of advice about what car to buy.
You have a Rover 75. I don't have...
Well, I don't have a Rover 75 any more.
-What have you got now? -I've got a Mini Cooper.
-So you've gone backwards. -(LAUGHTER)
You can't go backwards from a Rover 75.
-You've managed it. -The only way is up.
You've got a smaller car than you had.
Now, just leave your cars out of it for the moment.
Your car history is woeful, isn't it?
I mean, I think it's the shortest we've ever had.
-It went Fiesta 1.1... -Well, yes,
the Fiesta 1.1 was the first car I owned. It was sort of pale blue.
And then I moved to London after university and didn't have a car for about 10 years,
-then I bought a classic Mercedes. -Which is the 1966...
-That's a beautiful car. -It really is.
Are you an Aston Martin fan?
I am, but only because I'm a really childish man
and I like the idea of pretending to be James Bond.
-So, you're the DB... -The 5. The 6 has got a bit more legroom, is that right?
That's true, it's slightly longer.
So I think I could do with the 6.
-What do you think about the 4? -What 4?
-The DB4. -Which one?
Well, I don't know. I'm just saying a DB4
because I saw the other day on a website someone said we're selling a DB4,
-and I thought, "I don't really know that one." -No, that's too old.
You do realise if you're gonna run these old classic cars,
they're gonna break down all the time.
Yeah. No, I heard that. And I was gonna buy this DB6 and they said,
"Oh, well, you need to do something to the doors.
"You need to re-align the doors." I said, "Why's that?"
"Well, you might turn a corner and the door'll fling open."
"I thought, yeah, I'd quite like you to repair that before I buy it, please."
'Cause didn't the paparazzi have you with it broken down?
'Cause you must be the most paparazzied man in the world at the moment.
It's weird 'cause you often think,
"Oh, they can't print a picture of this. It's too uninteresting."
But the other day I was wiping bird (BLEEP) off my car,
and I was photographed doing that.
I thought, "That's obviously not of interest to the British public."
But there you are, yeah!
I'm genuinely interested in what's happened here, because you've gone out
to your car,
-noticed that a bird has relieved itself on it. -Mmm.
You've then gone back into your house to get a pan.
And some soapy water, yeah. What would you do? Lick it off?
-Leave it! -What was I supposed to do?
-Leave it! -Leave it?
-Isn't this an indication... -It's a beautiful car and I was gonna drive it.
Do you get, like, dressed up for driving your car, then? Are you into it?
Well, I have done. When I first bought the car,
I did put on my suit, and then I put on a trilby hat and a pair of driving gloves.
Driving around like that
for about 10 minutes, before I realised
if anyone saw me doing that it would be shameful.
Anyway, we'll lose that. The track, how was it?
It was terrifying because in the last lap I nearly killed about five people
who were operating the cameras.
And then the other thing is you don't get to know how well you've done
until talking to you now, so you keep trying to go faster and faster
but you don't know how much faster you're meant to go.
No, exactly. Well, should we have a look at some of the practice laps?
-Would you like to see that? -AUDIENCE: Yes!
Okay, let's run the tape here.
Right. This is coming up... This is the second-to-last corner.
That's not quite the right line through there.
There we go. Second attempt... And off we go again!
So, third time, you're bound to get it right this time. Looking a bit better.
Nope. And what, again!
And here he goes on the fourth! Here we go again...
Must get it right. Looking good.
And, oh, dear, no!
I was just trying to make good television. That's all it was.
You did that. Is that what The Stig told you to do, then?
No, he didn't. He kept on giving me great advice.
But it was hard 'cause you can't see his face.
-Would you like to see the actual finished product? -AUDIENCE: Yeah.
-Should we put this on? -No.
Yes! Here we go!
That's an aggressive start. I like that.
Why did I agree to do this?
You agreed to do it 'cause we leant you an Aston Martin for the weekend, that's why.
That's looking quite...
Listen to those tortured tyres!
Very good. Here we go into Chicago!
Ooh, keeping your teeth clean. Hammond giving you that advice?
Through the Hammerhead.
That's quite slow.
I'm sure I'm gonna kill a cameraman.
You needn't worry about the cameraman. We have back-ups of those
just in case one of them is killed one weekend.
And, there you go...
Ooh, now we're picking up some speed here! We come to the second-to-last corner.
This is where you were caught out. That's a wide line.
That's quite a good line, actually. That's your own invention.
And that's good. And then we're coming up to the...
Ooh, well, that's slowly across the line!
-Where do you reckon? -I would like to beat Steve Coogan.
Pouring with rain when he did it.
Don't care. I'd like to beat him.
Well, you beat him.
-Thank you. -Because it was dry.
Oh, dear, there's always a bitter aftertaste with you, isn't there?
Yeah, coming down again.
I'm gonna make you feel a little bit better, if you don't mind,
'cause the thing is, is we reckon
that a dry track is four seconds a lap faster than a wet one.
So, in other words, to have beaten Coogan, you've gotta do it in a 1.50.
-And you have! -Oh, good.
1.50.7! So it goes there, ladies and gentlemen.
Better than Timothy Spall,
quicker than Christian Slater and James Nesbitt.
But not as quick as you, Jimmy.
That's a lot quicker. You were three seconds quicker, aren't you?
Yes, yes, I am.
I'm still the fastest man.
Actually, Jimmy, to be honest, you were described by The Stig
as the worst driver we've ever had down here and the luckiest man alive.
I think the time speaks for itself. Good luck.
-Did you like my lap? -I quite liked your second-to-last corner.
'Cause that indicates a man with no fear, to keep coming in at that speed.
Well, that's the last bit, you see. So if you've made any mistakes up to that point,
you're very determined to go as fast as you can at that point.
Which is not a great idea because, like me, I nearly ended up killing those people.
I was prepared to sacrifice them for a good time.
I like that. I like the sound of that. So there we are, ladies and gentlemen,
-David Walliams! And Jimmy Carr! -Thank you very much.
Every single week, we announce the year's most important car.
But this week, we actually mean it.
Don't worry. It's not this.
This is the Mazda MX-5 you know and love.
The icon that today stands as the best-selling roadster of all time.
Even though it's been around for 15 years now,
the current car is still best in its class.
That is, quite simply, an awesome achievement.
So, no pressure, then, for what's coming up next.
Yes, this is the brand-new MX-5, and frankly,
you wouldn't blame it for hating its dad right now.
I can't think of a car in recent memory
that's carried such a weight on its shoulders.
It's like the White Album following Sgt. Pepper.
Godfather II--following the Godfather,
Police Academy 6 --following Police Academy 5...
You can still easily tell which family tree it comes from.
But this new MX-5 is altogether more chunky
and more muscular.
This version, the 2-litre sport, costs £18,900,
900 more than the equivalent old model.
But for that, you get quite a lot more car.
It's longer and wider.
It has more airbags and options like traction control.
That all sounds great, but actually, it could be a bit of a worry.
You see, the Mazda MX-5 was always great, not because of what it had,
but because of what it didn't have.
It was basic and light, and that's what made it nimble.
And so, good to drive.
So the question is, has all the grown-up stuff spoilt the show?
To find out, it's time to re-introduce the MX-5 to its old friend, the B-road.
First, a bit of culture. When the boffins at Mazda worked
on the handling for the new MX-5, they followed the principle of Jinba Ittai.
It's Japanese for (READING).
That may all sound a bit "Crouching Kitten Hidden Hippo",
but as soon as you drive it, the penny drops.
It's as though you and the car are one.
50-50 weight distribution.
Simple, direct steering.
It is brilliant!
The engine in this one, a 2-litre with 158-brake horsepower,
takes the car from nought-to--60 in 7.9 seconds.
So it's not exactly super-fast, then, but I'm really not bothered.
If anything, that's just an excuse to rev the nuts off it.
This means you have to change gear quite a lot,
but in the MX-5, even doing that is a pleasure in itself.
You feel so involved. It's a short shift. It's snappy and mechanical
and it means you're not just shifting cogs around.
You are Terence Stamp on the King's Road in the 1960s.
The reason if feels so good to drive
is, I think, because the engineers have been such geeks.
For example, this new MX-5 is bigger and has more stuff on it,
but it weighs just 9.5 kilos more than the old one.
And they've done it with really anal stuff
like shaving 84 grams off the weight of this mirror.
So, buy two bags of crisps and you've undone all that good work.
Think of that next time you're peckish.
The fact is, a car can only be great
when everyone who's making it is completely clear about what it's meant to be.
And that is the case with the MX-5.
For example, the engineers agreed they didn't want the new car
to have any more grip than the old one.
And that...says it all.
When most companies bring out a new car,
it has to have more of everything because more sounds like progress.
But this is so simple, so sharp,
it suddenly makes the Z4, the Boxter, the Mercedes SLK look
like big heavy, wobbly, cumbersome things.
And why would I pay twice the money of the Mazda to have them? Why?
It is, then, a worthy successor to the old MX-5.
But we're not done yet.
You see, we're actually in Ireland because we've been invited over for a challenge.
"Why don't you bring a car over here for a race?" it said.
But not a race against another car. Oh, no.
This is a race against something with a bit more pedigree.
What we're up against is Mama Tina.
She's won 10 of her last 20 races
and she's worth 25 grand,
which is considerably more than the car.
For this race, I'm gonna be using Beati Dogu.
Japanese for the ancient art of driving a sports car around
a greyhound track faster than a dog.
Now, so that I don't plough into one of Ireland's most valuable mutts,
we're gonna race using the Olympic cycling method.
Car and dog will start from opposite sides of the track
and race one lap to their respective finish lines.
Right, here we go.
And we're off! No grip! No grip at all! Gimme grip!
That dog takes off like a rocket!
In fact, in just over a second,
she was already doing 45 mph.
60 mph. I'm gonna have to really slow for the corners.
I'll lean, like a dog does.
That might help.
We'll try the rally turnaway.
This is the perfect car for racing a greyhound round a track.
The heel-and-toe braking.
This is a fantastic little car!
But is it good enough to beat Muttley?
Greyhound against Mazda MX-5!
Have I won?
The dog's time...
And the car's time. Bugger.
CLARKSON: It really is brilliant. Seriously.
Do you know what? I absolutely love that car! It's fabulous.
So do I. But, not as fast as a dog.
Well, no, it isn't. But the dog makes a very good point.
Because dogs... Well, all animals, in fact, are rear-wheel drive.
They are. Because... No, think. The front wheels, they do the steering
and the back wheels... That's why a terrier
would always oversteer on a polished wooden floor.
Into a kitchen cabinet.
An elephant is definitely not rear-wheel drive. That's four-wheel drive.
How d'you make that?
It's got four knees, an elephant. That's why it's good off-road.
And a hyena, that's front-wheel drive.
-No, it's not, that's rear-wheel drive. -It is, I promise you.
-A hyena is different than any other animal.
It's got front-wheel drive. Its wheels at the front, propulsion and steering.
And it's back wheels are there just to keep his bottom off he ground like a spitfire.
How do you know that stuff?
I just know these things. It's like...
Attenborough doesn't give you this information, let's be honest.
I like cats. They can drift. If you watch... No...
-It's true. If you watch a terrier
-chasing a cat... -The classic chase.
Which it is. Absolutely. You watch, the cat will hold a huge slide
and then nine times out of 10, the terrier will oversteer off, spin off into a...
-The terrier's having more fun 'cause oversteer is more fun. -That's the whole point.
Than a four-wheel drift. It is.
This is a service, because what we've proved is that a hyena
isn't as much fun as a dog because...
-A hyena understeers. -A hyena understeers.
That's the drawback with a hyena, to be honest.
-Yeah, it is. -It is.
-So, a dog... I'm just going into this. A dog oversteers. .-Oversteers.
Which is more fun.
Than an under-steering hyena. So you want a Mazda MX-5 because it's rear-wheel drive!
How about that for some logic?
There are times that I'm afraid I really don't understand
what my two colleagues are going on about.
But never mind. Let's do the Top Gear--Awards!
These are the big ones!
These are the big ones, and we're starting with
the biggest surprise of the year.
A number of options for us, but we're starting with this.
It's James, and as you can see, he is running and he is on television.
-That actually happened. -That did happen.
Bigger than that, though, was Jeremy receiving a pie in the face.
Certainly, that was a surprise for me.
-It was. -I have to be honest.
Despite her size, I mean, she was like a gazelle, that girl.
-They're rear-wheel drive. -Shut up!
They are. Because they're a bit shaky on the loose.
-stop this animal nonsense. -Okay.
Sorry. Okay, but listen. Both of these events were
beaten by new cars that were much better
than we were expecting them to be.
-So, here are the nominations. -Yes. And the nominations are
the Honda Civic, Britain's most boring car has been given a thong!
-And the Nissan... -A what?
-A thong. -You said "thonk"!
-"Thong." -He said "thonk".
-You did say "thonk". -Yeah, it's a sort of...
Are you wearing a thonk today by any chance?
-I am. -You're wearing a thonk?
-A thonk is like a thong... -So you're like a Honda Civic...
Can we move on maybe? The next nomination is
the Nissan Mirada.
But the winner is the Audi RS4!
We thought it would be just another fast Audi.
But in fact it goes and it grips like a hyena with elephants' legs.
Okay, we're moving on. And we're moving on to the Ugliest Car of the Year!
And the nominations are...
-The Ssangyong Kyron. -(HAMMOND SHUDDERS)
-The Ssangyong Rodius. -(SHUDDERS AGAIN)
And look at this one, the Ssangyong Musso!
That really is a moose, that thing.
-That's grizzly. -Okay, so which one has won it?
It's the BMW 3 Series!
Ugliest car of the year.
It's so dull. It's just "some" car. It's like 14 foot of car.
Yeah, that's what it is. You buy it like curtain material.
"I want a BMW about 15 feet long." "You'll want the 3 Series."
It's dreadful. An appalling car. So what have we got next?
Right. Now for the best car we drove all year. And the nominations include
the Ferrari F430, which is just exquisite in every way.
HAMMOND: The BMW M5. It goes like the Ferrari, costs half as much
and has twice as many doors.
But the winner is...
The Bugatti Veyron!
That car takes everything to a whole new level.
A whole new level.
Right. It is now time for the best noise of the year.
And the nominations are...
The Ferrari F430.
That is the sound your spine would make if you could actually hear it tingle.
HAMMOND: The Mercedes CLS55...
That is the sound of a spitfire full of jackhammers!
CLARKSON: But here's the winner!
The Aston Martin V8! Listen.
That is just sheer volume, that thing! Really is. It's like Spinal Tap!
The exhaust goes all the way up to 11. Fantastic!
What colour thong are you actually wearing? Black and white?
We now have the George Michael award for the most ill-advised piece of facial hair
in motor sport.
And the nominations are...
Jenson Button and David Coulthard, both of whom grew
a full set of face moss this year.
But the winner is Fernando Alonso, who for some reason
grew what appeared to be a blob of Marmite on his chin.
You just wanna go up to him...
Get rid of that!
It's silly! Absurd!
Now, the Gas Guzzler of the Year. The nominations are...
The Range Rover Sport, which achieved 8 miles to the gallon.
The Bugatti Veyron, which achieved four miles to the gallon.
Anyway, I'll just go for the winner... Here we go.
It's the Ford GT!
Yay! Thirstiest car in the world!
So your car is actually thirstier than a burning oil refinery!
Oh, absolutely. You can see the cloud coming out of that exhaust from space.
Okay. It is now time for an award which, frankly, you will not see
on any another awards programme.
Best German of the Year! And the nominations are...
Dr Ulrich Bez for rescuing Aston Martin.
Dr Ferdinand Piech for financing the Bugatti Veyron.
But the winner is... Sabine Schmitz.
And here she is driving around the Nurburgring in a van
faster than some (BLEEP) on motorcycles!
I'm glad it wasn't me being overtaken by a van.
She's such a star!
Right, Driver of the Year.
Fernando Alonso, the Formula 1 world champion,
that Italian thing on a motorbike...
Valentino Rossi! He's a genius!
He's not a genius. He's just good at not falling off his motorbike.
Anyway, the thing is the winner
is the person who was fastest round the only track that matters, ours,
You've done it!
She's the girl!
She is the girl.
Now, sadly, Ellen couldn't be here to pick up her prestigious award
because she couldn't be bothered.
So I had to go to her.
Ellen MacArthur, as the fastest star in a reasonably priced car of 2005,
indeed, of all time,
I would like to present you
on behalf of Top Gear--and its 350 million viewers
-with this piece of trophy. -Wow!
-Congratulations! -Complete with nautical theme!
I'd just like to say a big thanks Top Gear.
The experience was incredible.
Wow! This is just out of this world. Thank you.
-She's also really pretty. -Yeah, that's true.
Now, every year, this prestigious and coveted golden cock
is awarded to the presenter who makes the biggest hash of something in the year.
Last year I got it for leaving a Land Rover Discovery
and a film crew on top of a Scottish mountain
and going home with the keys in my pocket.
This year, though, it's awarded...
Yes, it is. Because, you see, the thing is, the other week
we had to record a short trail, the three of us.
And James was mysteriously reluctant to appear on camera.
-Where've you just been? -Right. I've been for a slash.
-Oh, he's got a dribble. -No, no, I haven't got a dribble.
-Yes! -No, no, no, no. no.
Let's stand up and do this link.
No, I think we should... Let's stand, Brian.
Yes, let's do it standing. It's much better.
James, are you not coming in? You may as well!
-I'll just sit here. -Check out the dryness.
If you have a weakness on this show, you die.
Now, look... Look...
We've all done it. I was in a hurry. It was splashback from the tap.
-Oh, it was the tap! Of course! -Whatever, James.
-There's the Golden Cock! -Wow, what a moment.
Coveted and prestigious! Savour it!
It's time now for the award for the Coolest Car of the Year.
Here we go.
Actually, it says Porsche 911 on it, but I've decided I'm gonna give it to
the Aston Martin V8 Vantage!
-No question. -Stop!
-You can't do that! -Why not?
You can't just come in and change it.
That's like going to the Oscars and saying, "Best Actress is Judi Dench,
"but I fancy Uma Thurman more so she's getting it."
I would do that.
You would, but you can't. This is an awards ceremony.
It's decided in advance by a panel of experts. You can't change it.
Okay, let's ask the audience. Am I right?
It's not a poll, either. It's an award.
If it's not a democracy, then it's a dictatorship.
And I'm dictating that the Aston Martin V8 Vantage is the winner!
No. I'm gonna do it again. I'm gonna do it again.
And the Coolest Car of the Year is the Porsche 9...
-We're not doing it again! -I...
We've all agreed, it's the Aston...
He's eating it!
He's eating the piece of paper.
I'm not doing any more awards!
-I'm not doing any more! -You can't come in and change it!
I'm sorry. Just...
Pack it in because the nation...
It's not nice.
I'm not doing any more.
No, look, the nation is on tenderhooks.
We've got all these to do. We've got best tow car,
best diesel, we've got best racy access in a three-door super mini.
I'm not doing any more. He'll just eat them all, James,
I'm moving it on to the final film.
Best electric mirror controls.
James, I'm moving it on to the final film.
-See, the thing is... -Best thong... Oh, no, that's...
I'm not doing any more 'cause he'll just eat them.
I'll move it on to the final film, okay? You see, the thing is,
is that there was a Grand Prix in Turkey this year.
And Fernando Alonso arrived there saying, "I know my way around this brand new track
"'cause I've done it on an X-PlayBoxStation" or whatever it was.
And I thought, "That's odd."
Can you really learn your way round a race track on a PlayStation thing?
So obviously, I had to find out.
I am going to pick a track.
I'm gonna go for a real one that exists in real life, Laguna Seca.
And now, I'm going to choose a car.
TVR Tuscan. No, too much of a handful.
Aston Martin DB9.
That's not really a racing car. That's just pornography. So, no.
We'll go back from that.
NSX! That is perfect.
Here we go.
A fine start. I want to cross that line at 100 mph.
Where's your brake? Where's your brake? Where's your brake?
Now! 400 yards out. Nose dip. That's nice. That's real.
A little bit of power. And then just onto the rumble strips. Nice.
Slight dab at the brakes. Turn in. Ooh.
I can feel the understeer building up. That is realistic.
That is just supreme for that corner.
The nation will be full of 11-year-olds saying, "Wow, Dad.
"I wish you were that good!"
Watch how you go through The Corkscrew when you know what you're doing.
One of the hardest corners in the world, but you'll see,
no real problem for someone like me.
As soon as you see the curb, on the brakes. Hard, hard, hard, hard.
1.41! There it is!
Piece of cake. But here's the thing, could I now get round that track
in that time, in that car, for real?
Straight! Oh, (BLEEP)!
To play the real Laguna Seca, you have to go to California,
where you'll discover a death-dealing blend of G-force and tortured tyres.
This is the most fearsome track in the North America,
largely because of one corner, The Corkscrew!
I've driven round The Corkscrew a million times,
electronically, and I just can't believe how steep it is.
Or how blind it is!
Small wonder half The Stig's address book's buried in that tyre wall over there.
Still, I had the car, I had the track,
and now it was time to see if I could match the time I'd set on the PlayStation.
Now in the game, I'm doing 118 mph at the end of this straight
that isn't straight!
That's not a corner on the PlayStation!
Oh, my God!
This was horrific.
The concrete walls were so close it felt like a street circuit.
Thought I'd had it then.
This is the difference.
Not sitting on a sofa.
That's the other thing you can do in the game
is you can adjust your throttle and your brakes in the middle of a corner.
You try doing that in real life, you're off.
Murder, blood, spurt, gut, artery! Cold Case.
Ooh, at the rumble strips.
Just like I do at home.
That was a bit faster than I wanted to do. That was turn six...
Which means the next one is blind turn seven, The Corkscrew.
I just daren't brake there. I dare not brake.
Going in, this'll get the G-force working... Ah...
No, no, no!
Nigel Mansell said in that corner, he'd got negative G, then lateral G,
then massive positive G, all in the space of a second.
So, 1.41 to beat. Could I really do it first time out?
2.01, two minutes, 1 second.
I'm sorry. How fast did you say?
Two bloody minutes?
This was alarming news.
When you're coming up to the top of the course, it's blind.
On the PlayStation you go right over the crest,
brake, turn in.
You try doing that. You try doing that.
I do not have the skills to do that. I'm losing five, six seconds there.
And everywhere else, I'm brilliant, frankly.
You know, you just sort of go, "That is Jacques Villeneuve in that car.
"A bit fatter, but that's Jacques Villeneuve."
With 20 seconds to make up, I called on the circuit instructor,
who suggested I went back to studying the game.
-I'm gonna drive this like I'm driving the track. -Okay.
-So I'm braking there... -Yeah.
No, you see, the brakes are better than it is here.
-You can't do that in reality. -No, you can't.
And you're already doing 100 mph all the way up.
He helped me to understand where the game was true to life,
and where it was leading me astray.
So, then it was time to try again.
This is the worst. That is the absolute worst bit.
You just keep your thumb on it in the game. You just, "Buuu."
This is where you just dab the...
I just can't do it.
You don't get that in a PlayStation, that surge of adrenaline.
This time I tried to attack The Corkscrew with the venom I used in the game.
Don't brake, don't brake, don't brake.
But it was hopeless.
My leg's got a mind of its own and it's braking!
The reality was just too daunting.
So much, and you don't feel that G-force that you get...
I'm turning too soon! I'm going off...
I had hoped this trip would serve as a good-bye tribute
to Honda supercar which is being built no more.
It's such a shame they're dropping the NSX.
Fifteen years of this thing. Chassis designed by Ayrton Senna...
And the noise it makes is just so exciting.
You never wanna change up. Listen.
More! More of that!
So, had I done the NSX proud? Had I done a 1.41?
That last one was a 1.59.
The brakes are completely cooked. I've got to let them cool down.
Then, one last do-or-die.
I can smell them from here.
It's nice of you to say, because obviously the viewers at home can't smell that.
Can we just say... What are we smelling?
-We're smelling the brakes quite a bit. -Burnt brakes.
Burnt brakes. So we were saying it was not me. The car's let me down!
So I had the excuses of a racing driver, and the game had convinced me I had
the ability of a racing driver.
But the fact is, I'm not a racing driver.
The one thing I've learnt today, and I have learnt this,
is that you can have the skill to get this car round here in 1.40,
and it could do 1.40, I'm sure of it.
It's that part of your brain that makes you frightened.
That's what racing drivers don't have.
They don't have imagination. They're not thinking,
"What if a wheel falls off now?"
"What if I push the brake pedal and nothing happens?"
"What if a giant meteorite lands in front of me?"
That's all I'm thinking, all the time.
"What if? What if? What if?"
But despite this, I had to go out one last time.
How the hell am I going to find 17 seconds?
Right. No more Mr Nice Guy.
Yes. Better, much better.
Feel the anti-lock kicking back there. You don't get that in a PlayStation!
Come on, in you go.
Come on! Come on!
Turn in the one!
That's the little... That crest, that bump there,
you don't feel those things when you're playing it in your sitting room.
The Corkscrew. Whoa! God...
Braver, Jeremy. Well done.
Yes, I'm pleased with myself!
I like it!
Oh, no! The film's broken!
No, no, it's not broken! What was your time?
I don't think the time's relevant, to be honest.
Jeremy, of course it's relevant, you imbecile!
-That's why you went all the way to California. -Not really.
-Yes! -Come on.
-So, what was your time? -One something.
So you spent all day there and you hardly improved at all?
You didn't even give the NSX a proper send-off?
What I did was prove
that you can go faster on a sofa in your sitting room
than you can in a supercar on a race track.
-Really. -That's what I did.
On that rather contrived bombshell, it's time to end the show,
and in fact, the series.
Have a very happy New Year, and, unless we get eaten by a giant chicken
-in the meantime... -HAMMOND: It happens.
...we'll see you in the spring. Bye!