Paul Hollywood visits Italy to find out what makes the country tick when it comes to cars. How do the cars they make and the way they drive reflect their nation's character?
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I'm Paul Hollywood, and I'm sort of a baker,
and part-time racing driver.
I love getting in cars, I love racing.
When I did that for the first time,
honestly, I've never been so excited in my life.
I've been into cars for as long as I can remember.
When I was a little boy, that was my favourite car.
DB5, James Bond car - that started my passion in cars.
They're more than just transport from A to B,
they're a thing of enjoyment
they're a thing, for me, that I use to de-stress.
What really fascinates me is what cars say about their owners
and about the people who made them.
# Don't worry
# Be happy. #
'In fact, I reckon you can learn a lot about a country
'by looking at the cars it produces...'
It is all just quite... merde.
'..and by driving on its roads.'
If you break the rules, you know, people will go nuts on you.
So, I'm off on a European road trip...
..visiting some of our most car-obsessed neighbours.
Checking out the history, the culture, the people,
and what makes the country very special when it comes to cars.
This time, I'm in a country where they're properly passionate
about their cars.
OK, we're about to head off on a six-day tour of Italy,
taking in quite a big chunk of it, actually.
1,000 miles in this country's sexiest, smallest and silliest cars.
We're going to start here in Rome.
Head north all the way to Maranello.
A little bit further north to Verona.
And then we're going to head west to Turin.
Then north into the Alps to Courmayeur.
Finally, last leg, south again to a mad festival in a town called Ivrea.
'What I want to find out is, why the Italians build the cars they do...'
Look at this car!
'..what those cars say about them...'
It's a style choice.
'..and if they really drive as badly as everyone says they do.'
Rules are for everybody else.
'Along the way, I'll be hooking up with a few locals
'who gesticulate a lot...'
This gesture means your wife is cheating on you.
You're kidding me. Yeah.
'..get all touchy-feely,
'and say stuff I won't understand until I see the subtitles.'
HE SPEAKS ITALIAN
'They'll also hopefully explain the Italians' love affair with cars.'
I'll give you a million for it. No, I won't. I'll give you two.
Six days and 1,000 miles for me to learn how to drive like an Italian.
So, the city where the whole road thing started.
Rome has a population of 2.8 million
and the highest rate of car ownership of any capital city
in the world.
There's one car for pretty much every Roman old enough to drive.
Rome also has a reputation for being the most dangerous city in Europe to
drive around, combining narrow streets, lots of cars,
cobbles, scooters, confused tourists, excitable Romans,
often it only ends one way.
To teach me how to survive on these roads,
a calm guide with a cool head would be the sensible choice.
But it will be much more fun with choreographer and Strictly judge,
It had the flavour of La Dolce Vita and the acceleration of la Ferrari.
It's lovely isn't it? It's stunning, Paul, look.
The eternal city, the great beauty.
Thousands of years of history.
The problem I have got, I was always told never to drive around Rome.
We're going to do it anyway.
From an early age, Bruno has been a bit obsessed
with Italian sports cars,
which hopefully means he'll enjoy today.
Our car is a Lamborghini Huracan Spyder.
Well, we're in Italy.
We had to start with a full-on "look at me" supercar, didn't we?
I can feel it right now.
You are an Italian driver at heart.
Do you like the car? Absolutely.
Italians make some beautiful supercars. Of course!
Lamborghini being one of the poster boys for me when I was growing up.
I had a poster of a Countach on my wall. We all did!
Get yourself a Huracan Spyder
and you also get yourself some big stats.
This is over 600 brake horsepower, over 200mph.
And a price tag of just under ?200,000.
That's ten years take-home pay for the average Italian.
If you were driving this in London, you'd think what a berk,
you know what I mean? Hood down.
It's not particularly warm.
We've got shades on. You'd think, what a load of posers.
But in Italy do they respect that?
They do, because this is part of their Italian heritage.
It's the best of Italy, it's the best of what Italy does.
Yeah, yeah. It makes you proud to be Italian.
It's something that represents the love of beauty and the passion you
have. For me, it's a work of art, really.
The cameras are literally out everywhere.
I love it. I'm posing.
Come on, go for it, the Italian way.
Give it welly.
I think I just set off a car alarm. Oh, God, it's us!
I've just been through a zebra crossing there.
People wanted to cross. Yeah... I just went straight through.
Forget about that. We've got a Lamborghini, we look good.
They stop. They stop and look, darling.
Rules are for everybody else.
We just don't follow rules.
And Bruno's right.
Almost 90% of accidents in Rome are apparently caused
by drivers disobeying laws and just doing their own thing.
The lines on the road are really pointless, here.
Yeah. Because, basically,
you take whatever line suits you to get where you want to get to
but everybody does the same.
So the chaos somehow works itself out.
Hang on, I'm getting the squeeze here. Yeah, but that's OK.
You'll be fine. Somebody will stop. But not you.
Look at this guy, he's cut me up. Well, it doesn't matter.
You just keep going. Yeah, but why are they like that?
You just keep going. Well, because, if you can find your way through,
you just do it. It's in the DNA of the Italians.
It's the DNA of the Italian nation.
And that's it. That's the Italian view of life.
If you can find your way through, you just do it.
They're not aggressive. That's one thing I have realised.
They're not aggressive. They are assertive, I like that.
That's OK, you know.
Assertive and yet endearingly self-aware.
In a recent survey, Italians voted themselves
the worst drivers in Europe.
By the way, this you don't need, my love. Hold on.
What are you doing?
Check my hair. Put it back. You don't need it, darling.
Who cares? People behind you are irrelevant, darling.
It's only what comes ahead.
Look at the state of these roads, Bruno. Goodness' sake.
Go, go, go. There you go.
And here goes the chassis.
Rome's roads are thankfully getting smoother.
Or at least the cobbled bits are.
The vibrations from cars and buses driving over the cobbles are causing
increasing damage to ancient monuments.
So, as many cobbles as possible are now being replaced.
I think I've lost a filling.
We've now reached the most notorious intersection in Rome,
What do I do here? Move, move, move.
Hang on. Move, move, get out of the way.
We've got the Lambo.
There you go. That's ridiculous.
Are they meant to be stopping?
They're stopping for us. Thank you very much, madam.
You've been very polite, thank you.
What the...? You have to ease yourself, you have to ease yourself.
Never stop, never stop.
Bruno's very next instruction is to stop.
And get out.
Because he wants me to meet the one man who tries to control
the mayhem in this piazza.
This is actually very famous as an example of crazy traffic in Rome.
Look at this, they come from everywhere.
They're coming from over there. Everywhere.
Look, and they put a police officer in charge.
Choreograph... Look, he's like a dancer.
Look at his uniform, though.
The uniform, even that is high-fashion.
I want to go and talk to him. Let's go and speak to him, yeah.
Do you reckon you can get over there without getting killed?
No, we won't get killed, darling. We're going to stop traffic.
Thank you very much.
'The white glove municipal police known as the vigili...'
Hello. Pleased to meet you. Buongiorno.
'..have been keeping the traffic flowing around Piazza Venezia
'for over a century.
'Fabio Grelo has done the job for ten years.'
How do you judge all of this craziness?
It's mayhem, isn't it?
It's crazy, yes.
It's very crazy. We stop all the traffic.
Just one traffic line at a time. Yeah.
HE SPEAKS ITALIAN
BRUNO TRANSLATES: You have to be calm.
And strong. And very strong. Very strong.
HE SPEAKS ITALIAN
I want you to learn how to direct traffic
and then I'm going to judge you,
one to ten, based on artistic interpretation, technique,
and performance value.
HE SPEAKS ITALIAN
This line, keep going, keep going. Oh, excellent.
OK. Wonderful wrist action.
While they used to carry a wooden box out into the road to stand on...
Look at me, look at me. OK.
These days they have an automatic platform that rises out of the road.
Except it broke a year ago.
And they haven't got round to fixing it yet.
More affirmative, Paul.
Look at him. OK, OK. I'm going to wave them all on.
Fabio was selected from over 2,000 applicants for this job,
and then had to train for three months
before he was allowed on the piazza.
What about the guys behind?
What about the guys behind? They're stopped. They keep in touch.
They'll be waiting. This is where it all goes wrong.
'Back on the road...'
E troppo bella! Grazie!
They said, what a beautiful car.
'..and now we're getting some serious love.'
Today we've been photographed more than Kate Moss.
I think it's the car.
We are supermodels. There's three cameras there, look.
Supercar with supermodel.
They love this car.
The chances are they're not going to own one. Never.
But they just want a picture of a Lamborghini.
Everybody takes pride of it.
There is no envy. There isn't, is there?
No. It's celebrating, you know,
something that this country does very well.
Look at that.
This is incredible. I love that building.
It's giving me goose bumps every time I see it.
I just think of Russell Crowe.
Oh, darling, you look like Russell Crowe.
'Having barely popped over 30mph all day,
'I'm now heading for the autostrada...'
'..so I can finally go fast.'
Paul, you're being naughty.
Problem is, that Italians see the autostrada as God's own racetrack.
So the traffic police out here are properly tooled up.
Oh, my God, Paul.
Do he put the paddle out? Yes. We have to follow them.
Follow them? OK. Don't do a runner.
I wasn't going fast.
Yeah, you were, a bit. We're in it together.
It's a team. No, you're in on your own.
If we go to prison, we go together.
I'm Italian, I know nothing! I have a career.
'Pulling us over is possibly one of the coolest police cars
'in the world.
'It's the hardtop version of the Huracan we're driving.
'Lamborghini donated two of these to the Italian State police.'
Uh-oh. Uh-oh. Uh-oh.
'Of course, my producers set this up.
'But we may have forgotten to tell Bruno.'
I have to apologise for the manner of my driver.
I don't have any responsibility for it.
He's been hired for the day and he was showing off.
He was showing off.
Tell me, is that a standard Huracan or has it been tuned?
No, this is a standard Huracan.
The only thing is, there's police equipment on.
Yeah. So we can use it on a police duty.
Yeah. Have you ever used it to chase somebody?
Yes. It's almost worth the ticket.
Just to see this car? Just to see that stopping you.
It happened, that somebody says, I don't care about the ticket.
Just stop me!
The main purpose of this car is organ transportation.
Simon Cowell Botox box.
I knew it!
Normally when the helicopter cannot be used, for the weather condition,
they call us to make organ transportation.
It is the prettiest police car I've ever seen.
The million-dollar question -
they say, Italians, we are the worst drivers in the world.
Do you agree with that? No, I don't agree. Great, thank you.
I think the Italians are the best drivers in Europe.
Having seen Rome, I thought it was actually organised chaos.
Yeah. But beautifully organised. Yes. Yes, but beautifully organised.
It's art. Yes. It's art.
I've had a great day, mate. Oh, Paul, grazie a te.
Ricorda, very, very important. What?
use your mirrors only to check your beautiful blue eyes.
But I think you need a shave, mate. Oh, leave it out.
Come on, sort that out.
'Today, I'm heading north.
'Or I will be once I make my seat belt work.'
Oh, come on!
I'm hoping to reach Maranello today.
Hoping, because I'm now driving a contender
for the worst Italian car ever built, the Alfasud.
But it's OK, you know.
The story of this car is in many ways typically Italian.
A blend of brilliant creativity, hopeless organisation,
and blind optimism.
In the '70s when all of Italy's car-building expertise
was centred in the wealthy industrial north,
the government, using lots of money, convinced Alfa Romeo
to build a brand-new factory near Naples,
in the poor agricultural south. Spread the wealth and all that.
And the Alfasud, aptly meaning "Alfa south",
would be the proud product of that factory.
Alfa's first-ever front-wheel drive car was years ahead of its time
in styling, handling and performance.
Sadly, its build quality was prehistoric.
Many of the 15,000 strong workforce were hastily recruited farm hands
with little or no manufacturing experience.
And the car was built with cheap, very low-grade Russian steel.
It was never going to end well.
Door handles fell off week-old cars.
The electrics rarely worked.
Windscreens fell out and rust was a nightmare.
Luckily for me this one hasn't fallen apart,
and I've made it all the way to Maranello.
This is Ferrari town,
home of the greatest supercar mark on Earth and there is no way
I'm driving around here in a Alfasud.
Luckily, you can hire something much more appropriate.
Buongiorno. Buongiorno. How are you doing?
Nice to meet you.
I'm after a Ferrari. You are in the right place.
I can see that, yeah.
I'm looking at your times.
Five minutes. Yeah, it's possible to rent a car also for a minute.
You start the car, drive to the end, to there, come back and go,
thank you very much. OK.
I need a Ferrari.
I'm looking at the California.
There's one, OK. What I need is your driving licence.
No problem. There you go.
OK, it is still valid.
This is your contract.
We have to check the condition of the car.
Damages et cetera. OK.
There's a mark here. There are a couple of stone chips.
We generally consider only the big damages.
Seems good to me. Yeah, I think it's good for you.
I need a couple of signatures.
On there? Here, yes.
Thank you very much indeed. Enjoy the car.
I will, thank you.
MUSIC: Sognando California by Dik Dik
You don't have to be a millionaire.
For 70 euros, you can drive around Maranello and be in a red Ferrari.
It's surely everybody's dream, isn't it?
And for 20 euros, they'll even video it.
So they'll video you in a Ferrari driving around Maranello,
the birthplace of Ferrari.
How cool is that?
The sunshine's out.
Maranello is part of the motor valley where 20,000 Italians
are in the business of building sports cars and bikes.
Together, they generate
a gobsmacking ten billion euros of sales every year.
Do you know, driving round here,
you see just everything is about Ferrari, you know, the whole area.
Without one man, Maranello would be a very different place today.
All Enzo Ferrari ever wanted was to race cars,
initially, running Alfa Romeo's racing team.
In 1939, he left Alfa,
and went it alone with his race team, Scuderia Ferrari.
Enzo reluctantly produced the first Ferrari badge road car in 1947.
He had little interest in road cars
but needed a way to finance his race team.
Look at that. The prancing horse.
Scuderia Ferrari is the most successful F1 team
in the sport's history.
And Ferrari is now one of the world's most powerful brands.
If you'd hired the car for ten minutes, I'd be driving it back now.
Would that be worth it?
There's no other car manufacturer on earth that provokes such passion
and pride from a whole nation,
especially when you consider how few Italians will ever own a Ferrari.
Of the 7,000 cars the company make each year,
only 3% are sold in Italy.
I think when you see the red, that typical Ferrari red,
it does put a smile on your face.
And it seems anything with the prancing horse on it
will put a smile on Italian faces.
Because last year, they spent around ?125 million on Ferrari merchandise.
So, why do they love this brand so much?
Well, I don't think you'll ever find a better answer to that question
than the one I get from this man, Massimiliano Morini,
the mayor of Maranello.
Maranello, the home of Ferrari.
Why the passion, not just of this area but generally, Italians,
why do they love Ferrari?
Oh, uh, I think that Enzo Ferrari once said that Ferrari cars
are not better than the other but different.
They are made of the brain of the blood and of the Earth,
of the people who build them.
I think that we can...
When we see a Ferrari,
we can smell this flavour and Ferrari tells the story of our land.
And I think this is the key of the success of Ferrari.
Ferrari are, without a doubt,
the kings of the supercar world right now.
But just 20 minutes down the road,
there's a young pretender taking the Italian supercar thing
to a whole new extraordinary level.
This is Pagani.
Horatio Pagani was an Argentinian immigrant who started work at
Lamborghini, sweeping floors,
but quickly worked his way up to become their chief engineer.
In 1992, he founded Pagani...
..with the aim of producing the world's finest
carbon fibre supercars.
In the beautiful Pagani factory,
designed to look like an Italian piazza,
they produce just 45 cars a year.
Each Pagani car is hand built and takes four months to finish.
The cheapest you can buy is ?2 million.
A single car contains 4,000 handcrafted
grade seven titanium bolts.
And the Pagani logo is etched on every single one.
The instruments on the dash are handmade by an Italian watchmaker.
The numerals and markings are cut from the metal face itself.
They each take days to create,
and come in at around five grand a set.
This is car manufacturing in the grand tradition of Italian fine art
and like a lot of fine art,
most Paganis find their way into private collections.
Many never to be driven, or seen on the road.
And that's a real shame.
Because these beautiful works of art are also supposed to be among the
finest driving machines ever built.
Something I'm about to experience,
because here at the Modena racetrack,
just down the road from the factory, Pagani have said I can drive this,
the Huayra coupe, one of just 100 in existence.
Except as soon as I arrive,
it's clear things have gone a bit Pete Tong.
Their road car has basically gone pop.
Their racing driver came in, did a few doughnuts...
Basically, he's knackered the car.
Juices have flown out of the bottom and there is no car for us to use,
which is a little bit annoying
because I've always wanted to have a go of a Pagani.
Except Pagani have a very secret prototype car at the moment,
which is the Roadster.
The problem is I don't think I'm going to be allowed to drive it.
WHISPERS: It's coming past me.
That's a prototype.
'Having said we couldn't even film the prototype,
'Pagani then agree to let me have a sniff around it on camera.
'And while I'm doing that, off-camera,
'the producers keep asking if I can drive it.'
This rap is designed basically so if there's paparazzi around
and cameras that want to photograph a very top-secret car,
this sort of blurs their image, they can't get a decent shape of the car.
'Our persistence eventually bears fruit.'
Paul, Pagani have said you can drive it.
This lady, who is head of PR for Pagani,
has said I can drive this car.
That is amazing. I mean, look at it.
Look at this car.
The one condition is that Pagani's test driver, Andrea Palma,
rides with me.
I was a little bit nervous but I was buzzing.
No other non-Pagani test driver has ever driven this car.
Please, attention with this car.
Because this is one of my babies. I know!
As we accelerate, I think Andrea is a little nervous.
In fact, keep your eye on him as we start some fast laps.
Careful on the braking.
I did mean to ask Andrea about how he thinks Pagani
reflects the Italian national character
but sort of feel now is not the right time.
Stop it, stop it, stop it!
This is the thing, racing drivers hate being driven around.
'Thankfully, though, after a while, my passenger relaxes.
'And I can just get on with loving it.'
What a car.
The sound feels like thunder.
It's amazing. It feels beautiful. Really good.
Woo! It's nice.
He's very fast.
Is that OK? It's fantastic. Yeah.
That was great fun. It's a very special car.
What Pagani have done is take this to a whole new level.
Ferrari took it to the level and they made sports cars,
and they made race cars, Lamborghini did...
They are all about the design.
I think what Pagani is, they're artists, designers
and racing drivers all blended in together.
I've fallen for it, really.
CAR WHOOSHES PAST
The next morning, after a couple of hours on the road, I reach Verona.
Today, I'm working for a local laundry, as a delivery driver,
alongside the owner's son, Kevin Napoli.
OK. This suit?
And my wheels?
Arguably the most important post-war Italian car of them all,
the Piaggio Ape.
Launched three years after the end of the Second World War,
this three wheel van is still in production today.
And so far, two million have been sold.
The beauty of the Ape is that it's so simple,
just a throttle and a break.
Any idiot could drive it.
Almost any idiot.
MUSIC: Sono Bugiarda by Caterina Caselli
Oh, my door's opened.
'OK, so it's debatable whether the Ape is actually a car...'
My door's opened again!
'..or a scooter with doors that don't shut properly.
'But let's go with car, please.'
Apes are cheap to buy, cheap to run and reliable.
Perfect for the hundreds of thousands of small family businesses
which still characterise many Italian cities.
I mean, these things are actually pretty decent vehicles to use.
Those little tight streets around Italy, it's absolutely perfect.
I can see myself delivering bread in this.
What a beautiful part of the city, though.
Ironically, I can't open the doors now, which is weird.
'Our delivery is shirts,
'for a lady who is apparently quite a famous Italian actress.'
Buongiorno. OK? Si! OK, thank you. Thank you, Paul. Grazie.
'That was easy. Time for a coffee break...
'..and a chat with Mirko Zambaldo,
'President of the Verona Ape Owners' Club.'
Can you tell me a little bit about why the Italians love the Ape?
After World War II, the Italian economy was on its knees.
Its people were broke,
they needed a cheap way to start and run businesses.
NEWSREEL: The people of Europe did not lack courage...
Enter the Ape.
And in this country of supercar lovers,
it appears they still have a big place in their hearts for this funny
'Back on the laundry run,
'I'm feeling a lot of love too for my Ape.'
'And so are my crew,
'crammed into the back of an Ape pick-up in front of me.'
'And so is Kevin, who appears to think using all three
'of the Ape's wheels is wasteful and boring.'
Oh, yeah, got him. Oh, yeah.
I'm going to cut him up now in the gate. Get in!
I've cut him up.
'You know what? I get it now.
'I love my Ape.
'I love what it says about Italy.
'While they dream of supercars,
'they passionately embraced their three-wheeled reality.'
That was great.
Having said goodbye to Kevin and my little yellow Ape,
I'm now leaving Verona in this beautiful 1938 Alfa 6C.
But I'm really nervous.
Every time I select a gear, I think, oh, please, don't crunch.
Because they only said,
"Paul, please don't crunch the gears because every time you do that,
"it costs me money."
So I'm really nervous.
'And I bet you'd be nervous too
'because this car is valued at around ?3 million.'
GEARS CRUNCH Ooh! he's going to kill me!
'This is the Mille Miglia version of the 6C
'and it's still regarded today as one of the very best cars
'Alfa Romeo ever built.'
I notice, I look in my one wing mirror,
I can see a new Alfa Romeo behind me.
That's him, that is.
The owner's watching me.
He's making sure that his car's all right.
Oh, yeah, go off, enjoy yourself.
I'll wait here.
'Only 107 of this special edition were ever built
'to commemorate the racing achievements of its predecessors.
'Because on this very road,
'Alfa 6Cs won the world's most prestigious motor race three times.'
NEWSREEL: The greatest international road race of them all,
the Mille Miglia.
The Mille Miglia started in 1927.
It was basically a 1,000 mile road race.
The race went from Brescia to Rome and back to Brescia,
although the exact route changed regularly over the years.
An estimated five million spectators lined the roads
as cars flew by at 150mph.
Italy's fanatical love of motorsport began with the Mille Miglia.
Alfa Romeo won it more than any other manufacturer.
It won it 11 times.
Enzo Ferrari ran cars in the Mille Miglia.
Ferruccio Lamborghini and Bindo Maserati raced in it.
This is the reason why supercars come from Italy.
A 1,000 mile race which lasted for 30 years before it was stopped.
And the reason it was stopped was because of what happened here on the
SP236, 30 miles south of Brescia.
It was at this point in 1957, 12th of March,
where there was an horrific accident.
At the start line, car 531 was amongst the favourites.
COMMENTATOR: The Marquis de Portago of Spain
and Eddie Nelson, America, share a Ferrari.
Neither the watching millions at the roadside
nor de Portago himself dream of the tragedy that lies ahead for him.
Approaching the finish, Portago was in third place.
He desperately wanted to win and was pushing hard.
The Ferrari lost control, blow out, the car turned, spun,
ended up in this ditch.
Nine of the spectators lost their lives here.
And this is the reason why the Mille Miglia never happened
the same way again.
Because this accident changed everything.
And 11 people lost their lives that day.
All for the sake of motor racing.
Subject of the day today is Italian style
and I'm heading west towards Milan...
..the fashion capital of Italy...
..where right now, the world's top designers,
cake dodgers, and chain smokers
are gathered for Milan Fashion Week to look at clothes
no-one will actually buy.
Thankfully, though, we're not stopping with the fashionistas,
at least not the ones who like dresses.
We're heading on to Turin.
Milan is for the clothes, Turin is for the cars.
This city is home to the world's leading car-styling houses.
Pininfarina, Bertone, Gandini, Ghia,
and Ital all started in and around Turin.
Car stylists are commissioned by manufacturers to create the exterior
design of cars, working on both aesthetics and aerodynamics.
The likes of Fiat, the likes of Ferrari, the likes of Maserati,
the likes of Lamborghini, they came here to get their cars styled
by these amazing fashion houses for cars.
This is a face-lifted version of one Pininfarina did.
The new Maserati Quattroporte.
This is a family supercar.
Quattroporte sounds very Italiano, but actually,
it just means four doors.
'And that's the point.
'Things feel more stylish by being Italian.'
'Italy is synonymous with style, but why?'
To try to find out, I'm heading here,
probably the most stylish test track in the world.
The Pista Lingotto.
Built on the roof of the old Fiat factory of the same name.
Even the ramp up there is beautiful.
It was opened in 1923...
..and meant that every single car produced in the factory below
could be driven straight off at the end of the production line
and tested high above the city.
Today, it has a speed limit of 30 kilometres per hour.
But the director decided it was still a suitably classy location
for us to shoot the bit where I meet this lady...
..chef, journalist and style guru Eleonora Galasso,
who drives an elegant classic, the Fiat Cinquecento.
Of course, elegance and Scouse baker are not common bedfellows.
Eleonora, lovely to meet you.
How are you? I'm very good.
We're going for a little drive around Turin.
It's open. There you go. That's really being an Italian gentleman.
We're starting very well.
You know, I was voted second in Britain's worst-dressed man.
Yeah, I'm very proud of that.
The Fiat Cinquecento, Italian for 500 by the way,
was launched in 1957,
in the days before seat belts were thought necessary.
It was one of the first purpose-built city cars,
designed to cope with the tiny streets of Italy's ancient cities.
You know, these doors with the hinges that go the other way?
In 1965, they moved the hinges to there
so that the doors opened normally.
Right, right. And the Italian men kicked off.
They really... They didn't like it.
You know why? Why?
Because they couldn't see the lady's knickers
when they came out of the car.
The devil's in the detail.
MUSIC: La Donna e Mobile by Rigoletto
Italians loved this little car because it was cheap
and compact, but also because it looked good.
And that wasn't an accident.
Its design was entrusted to Dante Giacosa,
who cut his teeth on sexy sports cars.
What he produced became an Italian style icon right around the world.
You've got one of these cars, haven't you? Of course I do.
Now, was that a style choice or was that because you loved it?
It's a style choice.
It's a lifestyle choice.
Do you think this car is stylish?
I suppose style is...
You can't really put your finger on it, can you?
But you know someone that is stylish because when you see someone who is
stylish, you go, now, you're stylish.
I suppose people see this car and say the same thing.
You look at this roof as well...
You think, that's a stylish roof.
Do you know why they put that roof there?
No, why? To save money on metal.
Style has nothing to do with money.
But you do have to have all the details right,
and show it out to the world without screaming it.
What we Italians believe in is the things that have lived
for a long time and that will probably survive.
Yeah. This is tradition.
You don't make it up. Right.
You learn it, you see it...
You breathe it. And you replicate it.
And you breathe it and it's within your veins, it's within your guts.
I think I get it now.
Italy has a very rich history and throughout that history,
how things look has been very important to them.
From art to clothes to buildings and even tiny, cheap cars.
You need to pull on the right, just here. OK.
Italians appreciate beautiful things, not expensive things,
and know how to create them.
Eleonora even reckons she can add a little bit of Italian polish
to the aforementioned Scouse baker.
You can be a new person.
You can be your Italian you.
OK, I'll change my name to Paolo.
'For Italians, style is in everything.
'How you look...'
'..how you dress...'
That's an Italian man I see.
It feels great. I mean, if I really let my stomach go,
I reckon I'll take your eye out like a bullet with one of these buttons.
'..and what you drive.'
'In Turin's most beautiful piazza...'
Wow! That's a great picture.
'..with Eleonora sitting on its bonnet,
'and Paolo Hollywood by its side,
'the Cinquecento is the essence of Italian style.'
I want this one. I love it.
I love it.
For my penultimate day,
I'm driving up to Courmayeur and a very different Italy.
The one in the mountains.
To meet a car which represents a whole new side of this nation.
You see, I'm starting to realise there are many different Italys,
all within the same country.
Before unification in the 19th century,
Italy was a collection of independent states.
And there's still a definite divide between the rich industrial northern
cities and the poorer agricultural south.
But then, 40% of Italy is mountainous
and that's a whole different ball game. So, Fiat built this.
The world's best value off-roader, the Panda 4x4.
Launched in 1983,
it was a car that reflected perfectly
life in the Italian mountains -
modest, tough and no-nonsense.
Up here, it's very popular.
Even with people who could probably afford something
a little bit fancier.
Like this man, Claudio Coriasco,
director of Courmayeur's poshest and most exclusive hotel.
There are many countries inside Italy
in a motoristic point of view.
Because we've got the Ape for the south of Italy, Fiat Cinquecento
that put again Italy on the road, and in the northern part of Italy,
it was the Panda. A lot of people still have Pandas
in the Auster Valley.
Really? A panda? A 4x4? Supercars are the dream.
And everybody would like to drive a dream but we drive reality.
This car belonged to my father.
He was a country doctor.
And he used this car to reach all the small villages
up in the mountains 30 years ago. This was built in 1987.
Wow! It was made to reach every impossible road.
This can afford 50 centimetres of fresh snow without any problem,
carrying four people.
Is it like a pet to you?
Yeah, absolutely. I will not sell it.
Not even for ?50,000. I will give you a million for it now.
No, I won't. I'll give you two. Well, let's talk about it.
See? There is a price.
Giorgetto Giugiaro, the original Panda's designer,
compared this 4x4 to a pair of jeans -
simple, practical, and without frills.
And you know? I bloody love jeans.
To show you just how good this little car is,
I'm ending the day with a slushy snow race.
This is the latest version of the Panda 4x4, the ?16,000 Panda Cross.
Driving it is the two times world rally champion Miki Biasion.
Yeah, it's a nice car.
It's a happy car. You drive and you smile.
'And this is one of the most expensive 4x4s
'that's currently built in Italy -
'the ?230,000 Ferrari GTC4Lusso.
'Driving it, me.'
'So, one flying lap.
'Flat-out time trial.
'Ferrari versus Fiat.
'Thoroughbred racehorse versus mountain goat.
'Dream versus reality.'
Good handling, yes? It is, yeah, it is.
That's a backbreaker, that one!
It's got grip. I mean, it's not a Range Rover,
but it's got grip.
'Ferrari built the GTC4 car because some of their customers complained
'that they couldn't get their two-wheel drive Ferraris
'up to their ski chalets through the snow.
'Breaks your heart, doesn't it(?)
'Now, I'm not saying that the Panda is better than the Ferrari,
'but with both me and Miki driving,
'it was three seconds faster around the track.
'And the Ferrari got stuck.
'OK, there's a button we didn't know about, which helps get it unstuck.
'But the Panda didn't need a button.'
It's my final day in Italy and I'm heading back south,
leaving the mountains.
Today, I want to answer one final question.
What is it about this country's culture and the character
of its people which means Italy produces
the most desirable and emotionally engaging cars in the world?
Like this one.
The most beautiful Italian car ever built.
The Lamborghini Miura.
I'll introduce you to the Italian sitting next to me in a minute or so
but right now, we both just want to enjoy the moment.
CAR HORN BLARES
Oh, we've got a tunnel coming up, eh.
Sounds great, doesn't it? Wow!
'So, that bloke in the passenger seat, as I said,
'I'll explain who he is in a moment.
'But first, having exited the tunnel safely, let's talk about this car.'
'The Lamborghini Miura was the first supercar.
'Two seats, rear-wheel drive, mid-engined
'and, as the Italians say...
'..molto, molto bellissimo.'
I love the fact that we're driving this beautiful car
and we have the Italian Alps as a panoramic view in front of us.
'Launched in 1966,
'the Miura is the same age as me and looking a lot better on it.'
When this hit the motor show, everybody just went crazy.
No-one had ever seen anything like this.
A mid-engined Italian supercar.
It's so radical and it drives beautifully.
They only build 763 Miuras and, while of course Italians loved them,
as with all supercars, most were sold abroad.
It feels like a race car.
It doesn't feel like a road car. It feels like you're in a race car.
Sammy Davis Jr, Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra all had Miuras.
When asked why he hadn't bought a Ferrari, Sinatra replied,
"You buy a Ferrari when you want to be somebody.
"You buy a Lamborghini when you are somebody."
Right, time to introduce that bloke in the passenger seat.
He is Francesco DeCarlo.
Comedian, car lover,
and a man who knows what driving in this country is all about.
Tell me about driving in Italy.
Oh... First of all,
that the position of your hands on the wheel... Yeah.
You know they are ten to two? Yeah.
But the Italian way is midday.
Yes. You have to show off that you're a cool guy.
OK. We call it making la belle figura.
You know, making a good impression.
Yeah. That's why we want to show off every time what we are doing.
So cars are kind of like a status symbol.
Then you need the sunglasses of course. OK.
And, uh, don't... Don't think about pedestrians.
We just don't like pedestrians.
As we enter the town of Ivrea, 50 miles north of Turin,
we're coming across quite a few pedestrians
and that's exposing a bit of a Miura design flaw.
This car is so low that when people walk across you,
you just have a crotch view.
Yes. I don't think this is the reason why they were so low.
I don't know. Maybe we've found something in this.
Even if we are in Italy, we are not so obsessed about sex.
He had a crotch obsession.
A crotch obsession! No, no, no, we are good people.
We don't think about crotches.
This country is very passionate about everything.
It's love and hate.
Tragedy and comedy are together.
We are brave and cowards.
We are the top of every kind of emotions.
I think that the cars are the same.
They reflect the spirit of the country in which they are built.
Yeah. So, you know, the British cars are very, very silent and classy.
The German cars are very powerful and reliable.
Yeah. They think Italian cars are noisy.
Italians are quite... Eh-de-de-de-de-re!
So it's all about hands, isn't it?
Oh, yes, obviously. Hand gestures is very important for us.
Even when you drive a car. Yes. Because there is a lot of signs...
Keep moving, keep on, come on.
It's my time. You know?
You have to learn this and then there is this gesture.
If you want to offend another driver, this is very old-fashioned
but it's still good.
It means that your wife is cheating on you.
You're kidding me! Yeah.
That? Yeah, yeah, yeah.
We use it for other drivers or referee... It's very, very popular.
So if someone... cuts you up. Yeah, yeah, yeah. You just say...
HE SPEAKS ITALIAN
The real reason we've come to Ivrea
is because Francesco reckons this town can answer my question
about why Italians build such brilliant supercars.
By way of a potentially very painful metaphor.
You like oranges?
Love oranges, yeah.
Yeah, yeah. You will see a lot of oranges.
This is the battle of the oranges.
Dating back to 1808,
the festival is something to do with Ivrea's ordinary citizens,
revolting against the wicked landowners of the time.
In reality, it's actually just a massive orange fight.
I think trouble's coming. I feel the tension. Something is happening.
SHOUTING AND CHANTING IN ITALIAN
To start with...
we watch from a safe distance,
bravely standing behind some netting.
MUSIC: Requiem, Dies Irae by Verdi
Those guys in the helmets are getting absolutely pummelled.
That's why we build supercar because we love excitement,
we love extreme life,
we love passion.
Yeah, yeah. You can be hurt here, you can be killed,
but you will never get bored in this country.
Never. Wow! Look at that.
That is absolutely crazy.
It's like going back 400 years.
Yeah, it's an ancient ritual.
You can feel it in the blood.
It's just a constant battering.
Look at the amount of oranges on the floor down there. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
'Italians have a knack for making life exciting to live.
'And that just makes you want to get a piece of the action.'
Do you know what?
Shall we go down there? Yes, I know it.
I knew it. Come on. Let's just have a go. Let's try.
You've got to do it, haven't you?
They take this orange business to a level which you think,
"What are you thinking?"
I'll take a few of them.
It thrilled you, it scared you at the same time.
I got hit in the mouth with a couple of oranges but wow, crazy Italians.
But if you do join in, don't scare the horses.
Everyone involved considers their safety to be paramount.
And you really don't want to upset thousands of Italians
armed with oranges.
I'm empty, mate. No, really?
Yeah. Look what's on the floor.
On the floor, oranges, horse shit
and blood, which is a perfect metaphor for life!
'And as a closing thought to my Italian road trip,
'you can't say fairer than that.'
'So, what have I learnt?
'Well, Italians are dreamers. Most of them will never own a supercar.'
E troppo bella! Grazie!
'However, they love what these extraordinary machines
'say about them and their nation.'
It's one of my babies. I know.
'At the same time, they're realists and embrace what they have.
'Who knew that working in a laundry
'or getting hit in the face with an orange would be so exhilarating?'
What the Italians have, and they have lots of it,
whether it be their food,
their styling, their throwing of oranges, their supercars,
their practical cars, they have one thing in common -
That is what makes Italian cars fantastic.
'Next time, I'll be in Germany, Europe's biggest car producer.
'Enjoying the autobahn...'
'..scaring the pants off Al Murray...'
'..and meeting naked people.'
This isn't awkward at all.
6 Music... Recommends.
No-one... ..tells us... ..what to choose.
In this episode, Paul Hollywood visits Italy to find out what makes the country tick when it comes to cars. How do the cars they make and the way they drive reflect the character of the Italian nation? On his trip, Paul drives some of the best, worst and most important cars built in Italy and is joined by a few travelling companions who provide an insight into Italian culture and explain why they think their nation has such a love affair with cars.
Paul's six-day road trip begins in the capital, Rome - where the whole road thing started. He is joined for the day by Strictly judge and Italian sports car fan Bruno Tonioli. In a bright orange Lamborghini, Bruno takes Paul on a tour of the city and teaches him how to drive like an Italian. They meet up with the policeman who has the unenviable job of directing the traffic at Rome's most notorious intersection and then have a more surprising encounter with the police when they get pulled over on the autostrada by just about the most fantastic police car in the world.
Day two begins with a long drive north for Paul, in possibly the worst Italian car ever - the Alfasud. Luckily, Paul doesn't break down and makes it intact to Maranello - the home of Ferrari. Loathe to be seen in an old Alfa here, Paul hires the only car anyone would want to drive around this town - a Ferrari. After a quick tour of Maranello and a chat with the mayor, Paul heads for the home of another Italian supercar legend - Pagani. Pagani are quite possibly the world's finest car builders and they have said Paul can take one of their two-million-pound Huayra cars for a spin on a local circuit. However, when Paul arrives, the car is not working. Paul is devastated, but then something amazing happens and Paul ends his second day in Italy on a very high high.
Day three and Paul is in Verona, to work for a laundry as a delivery driver. His vehicle is possibly the most important post-war Italian vehicle of them all - the Piaggio Ape. After doing his rounds, Paul heads out of Verona in a 1938 Alfa 6C - a car built to commemorate Italy's greatest motor race, the Mille Miglia. Paul drives along some of the race route and visits the memorial to the crash which ended the race proper for good.
By day four, Paul is Turin, the home of some of the world's leading car styling houses. He hooks up with chef and style guru Eleonora Gallaso. Their wheels for the day - a classic Fiat 500. Eleonora explains to Paul why style is such a crucial part of the Italian identity and ends the day by giving him a bit of an Italian makeover - Paulo Hollywood looks pretty dapper!
On day five, Paul is way up in the Alps in Courmayeur. This is a very different Italy and one that requires a very different kind of car. The Panda 4x4 is the perfect motoring match for this mountainous Italy - but how will it do on an ice track against a Ferrari? Well, with the help of two-time WRC winner Miki Biasion, Paul finds out.
On the final day of his Italian road trip, Paul has got his hands on the possibly most beautiful and engaging Italian car ever built, the Lamborghini Miura. He is joined by Italian comedian Francesco De Carlo. After a few lessons in how to gesticulate to other drivers, Francesco wants to try and explain to Paul why Italians make such engaging and involving cars. They visit a town called Ivrea, where they take part in the Battle of the Oranges - a massive festival which is all about having a massive fight with oranges. It's an exhilarating end to the trip.