Matt LeBlanc's review of the Aston Martin DB11 is thwarted by Chris Harris and a very evil Mercedes. Tamsin Greig takes to the Top Gear track in the new Reasonably Fast Car.
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CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
Hello, and welcome to Top Gear.
On tonight's show, we go supercar hunting
in a Volkswagen Golf
and discover the perfect runabout
for the fashion-conscious Bond villain.
let's talk about Aston Martin.
Now, Aston Martin... They've always made beautiful cars,
but the truth is, in recent years, Aston's been a bit left behind.
You know when we first saw this DB9?
In car years, that's ancient, right?
But now the DB9 has been replaced by a new car,
promising to bring Aston right up to date.
This is the all-new DB11.
Aston Martin says it's the most important model
in its 100-year history.
No pressure there, then(!)
Thankfully, it still looks great.
But look beneath the bodywork...
and there are a few surprises.
Aston's given the DB11 a smaller motor than the old DB9,
and, for the first time ever,
accessorized it with a pair of turbochargers.
Now, this... This is controversial.
The free-revving, naturally aspirated Aston Martin V12
is a British institution,
like the royal family, or...
Aston Martin going turbo is big news.
So, have they ruined it?
Not at all.
In fact, this might just be the best all-round Aston
in the last 20 years.
Or 40 years.
Damn, I'm old.
The engine might be smaller...
but those controversial new turbochargers
mean Aston's V12 now produces...
which is, you know, enough.
Enough, in fact, to make this the first DB car
that'll do over 200mph.
This thing goes like hell.
Sounds like hell too.
And, hey, it's still rear-wheel drive,
the gear box is still out the back for better weight distribution,
and now there's even proper multi-link rear suspension.
So if you do happen to accidently end up in a massive power slide...
..then, yeah, it'll do that too.
Whoops, there it goes again.
I'm so careless.
Now, some might complain that this British icon
has sourced all of its electronic computery stuff from Mercedes...
Frankly, I don't care if the stuff behind the scenes
is programmed by German guys in wire-rimmed glasses.
Doesn't bother me at all.
Mostly because, unlike old Astons,
it actually works.
all the tactile stuff is still just as it should be.
This leather is very...
And this metal...
is very metally.
And this wood is very...
I'm just kidding. That's nice wood.
Now, the armrest...
You don't have to go through all that effort
of manually sliding it back
to get at that little bit of storage
No. There's a switch here
that does that for you.
I cannot believe that I have been
manually sliding armrests
all these years, like an ape.
That is time I cannot get back.
So, it's great to drive,
great to spend time in...
..but it should be.
The DB11 is 155 grand...
..which does raise that old debate...
For about half the money, you could have a Nissan GT-R,
which...has about the same power,
and four-wheel drive,
and will annihilate this Aston around any circuit on Earth.
But, come on, that's not the point of the DB11.
This is a luxury yacht, not a speedboat.
It's a private jet, not a jet fighter.
It's about understated elegance.
Sophisticated, effortless, cool... Yeah.
Which means this race track is not where the DB11 was meant to live.
However, we've installed a useful new feature on this race track.
Narnia had its wardrobe, Bill and Ted had their phone booth.
And Stargate had its... its Stargate.
Well, Top Gear now has its left at Hammerhead.
That's right, left turn at Hammerhead.
HE EXHALES OK.
First time for everything. Let's do this.
ENGINE REVS, TYRES SCREECH
Now we're talking.
Yeah, just call me...Le Bond. Matt Le Bond.
Oh. Would have be nice if it came with the pants!
Of course, every hero needs a villain.
..the Mercedes S63 AMG Coupe.
A two-door with an evil streak.
It's huge, it's ostentatious.
I mean, I've got cameras that scan the road ahead for bumps and,
for some reason, I've got Swarovski crystals in the headlights.
I'm coming to get you, Le Bond.
Who the hell is that?
Oh! Ha-ha. Hey!
Ah, I get it. Bond villain, huh?
Let me guess, uh... Dr No-Hair?
You're loving this, aren't you?
You've got the car, you've got the suit.
Oh, hey, listen. Hillary Clinton called. She wants her jacket back.
Oi, look! I didn't even choose this.
-'That's a V8, right?
-'Well, a twin turbo V8, yes.'
V12. Twin turbo V12.
OK, look, pretend Mercedes, real Mercedes.
More torque and, let's face it, a better driver.
Oh, it's on. It is on!
Bulldozer, bulldozer. Oh, it's actually an articulating loader.
Get out of the way!
I've got a smug American to kill.
Ha-ha, see how you cope with this, Le Bond.
Full beam! Oh! Is there no limit to his evil?
Where's he going?
Ooh. Decisions, decisions.
Here is good.
GENTLE COUNTRYSIDE NOISES
Such a picturesque country.
Enjoy your lunch.
150! Wow, this car's quick.
Live with this, Le Bond!
See, the thing about that Merc is, slipping into 155.
This DB11 isn't.
Ah, that was a New Holland TN90F. Classic.
RADIO INSTRUCTIONS IN THEIR OWN LANGUAGE
Did you see the police? SIRENS WAIL
Of course I saw the police, and I think they saw us.
SIRENS WAIL, TYRES SCREECH
What kind of police cars are those, Dr No-Hair?
They are Vauxhall Astras, Le Bond.
We can outrun those, right?
ENGINES ROAR SUDDENLY
-Oh, this is cool.
MUSIC: James Bond Theme
We're surrounded, Le Bond, we are surrounded.
Oh, it's very bad. It's very, very bad.
Where are your trousers?
Don't draw attention to it.
APPLAUSE AND CHEERING
That was fun, that was really fun.
Yeah. Thanks, thank you.
So, left at Hammerhead?
Yeah. I think it opens up a whole new world of opportunities, right?
You just have to pack an extra pair of pants!
Matt, that would be wise.
OK. Let's talk about the cars.
You love this Mercedes, right?
It is fantastic. It's 20 grand cheaper than the Aston Martin.
It's the best GT car I've ever driven.
I arrived at places feeling more relaxed than when I started.
Double glazing, best hi-fi I've ever heard.
Best GT car you've ever driven?
It's wonderful. It's just a great car to be in.
-And it's very subtle too, I like that.
-Yeah, it's not overstated.
And you say you really like it. But it does miss one thing.
This one important thing it doesn't have.
-Are you ready?
It doesn't have this.
This badge right here. LAUGHTER
You're so vain, Matthew. This badge here, this badge
-was founded by Karl Benz in 1885.
He invented the motorcar. This thing has provenance.
But it doesn't have this badge.
This one right here. This badge. LAUGHTER
And do you want to know why that's relevant? I'll show you.
Who here would take the Mercedes?
That woman over there! LAUGHTER
-A woman with taste.
-OK, let me finish.
And who here would have the Aston?
I'm disappointed in each and every one of you.
You've let yourselves down.
It's a great car, great car,
-but it's not an Aston Martin.
OK. Now, there is one thing to do.
Find out how fast a DB11 went around our test track.
And you know what that means?
It's time for...The Stig!
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
'Here he is, then, on the line in the DB11.
'600 horsepower, twin turbo, V12.
'Pretty good traction off the line.
'Howling up now, past that heli shot.
'Braking's on, it looks heavy, doesn't it?
'Look at the roll on the car straight away.
'Stig, very relaxed in there, all leathery and woody.
'Look, a bit of tyre smoke coming out.
'This thing's got so much power, braking hard.
'Look at the pitch, at the weight moving around.
'Hammerhead. Managed to hold his line
'but watch the oversteer on the exit.
'Managing it all the way. Oh, that was sexy driving!
'All the way over to the right-hand side now.
'Braking hard into Hammerhead.
'Again, it stops well but it does look heavy.
'Look at the lean, a bit of understeer to start.
'Then Stig gets on the throttle, neutralises it.
'What happens on the exit? Here we go.
'Oh, that's just showboating. Super-slick oversteer
'Look at that smoke there, the diff opening up a bit.
'So maybe the diff's not that tight.
-'Through the follow-through.
'Looks really fast and skilful through there.
'Bang. That was aggressive.
'Braking hard into second to last.
'What's it like here? It looks very, very stable to me,
'but doesn't look that grippy.
'Oh! That was using all the track. And now left into Gambon.
'And over the line.'
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
That looked fast. That looked fast. OK.
The new Aston Martin DB11 went around the track in one minute 21.5.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
That's ahead of the M3. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
But, before you ask, before you even ask,
we had The Stig take the S63 around as well.
What do you think?
-Yeah, yeah, yeah, right, absolutely.
So the Mercedes AMG S63 did it in one minute 24 seconds flat.
Well, it's totally irrelevant.
Hold on, hold on. You, Chris Harris, pro racing driver, car guru,
is going to tell me that, in the context of comparing two cars,
that the lap time between those two cars is totally irrelevant?
It's totally irrelevant.
This is a comfort game.
This is a comfortable car. I can sometimes be, you know, rational.
You can also sometimes be a sore loser.
And a bit later on in the show, I'll be proving
you don't need to spend supercar money to keep up with supercars.
You just need the right machinery.
-And the right driver.
-Yeah. Not you!
All right. Now, it is time to meet this week's guest.
Stare of Green Wing, Friday Night Dinner, and Episodes... Great show!
Please welcome Tamsin Greig.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
WHISTLING FROM AUDIENCE
How are you going?
How are you? Oh, so glad to see you.
So glad you're here.
Now, Tamsin and I have been friends for a long time.
We do the other show together, obviously.
And, um, we have kissed on camera.
-Uh, I vomited on you on camera.
-Yeah. You did.
-And you kicked and punched me repeatedly on and off camera.
Yep. But we never have had...
The chat. You know.
We want to know about your first one?
-Because this is a car show, right?
-Yeah, your first car,
-what did you think I was talking about?
SHE WHISTLES WITH RELIEF
-First car, come on.
-My first car.
-Your first car.
Um. Fiat Uno.
Yeah, guys. Right.
And it gave me this kind of exultant feeling of liberty.
-And I was very, very happy in that car.
-An exultant feeling of liberty?
-Feeling of liberty.
-You don't get a lot of that.
The first poetry ever induced by a Fiat Uno.
But the Fiat Uno became a kind of like gangster car after that.
-It did. No, no!
-Where? In Chipping Norton!
No, like in Kilburn where I grew up!
Yeah, it became kind of, like, the souped-up version.
-Oh, the Turbo ie.
-Is that the one you had?
I had the basic one that sounded like a fridge.
The door made that really satisfying noise.
And did things move up after that car?
After that car, then I got a Citroen AX which...
-Aren't you glad you've got me on your show!
-I have a Citroen AX now.
-I still have one.
-How old is it?
-It is 1988.
They were famously unreliable, though.
-So, did you ever break down in it?
-Yeah, I did.
-I did break down once.
There's a tiny little road that goes over the Lake District
called Wrynose Pass.
And I was on my own and with a dog.
And I thought to myself, this would be a really bad place to break down.
At which point, my gear stick came off in my hand,
and this was before mobile phones.
And so I got out of the car with the dog, at sundown.
So, I'm walking down the mountain on this little road.
And managed to find a little house. There was a house there
and there was a couple there and I used their phone
and phoned the breakdown services and they found me.
And I said to the AA guy, are we allowed to say AA?
-Is that advertising?
-Yeah, you can.
Yeah, the man from Alcoholics Anonymous came...
And I said, "It's just so brilliant to see you,
"I was really, really worried.
"You know, I'm here on my own, I'm female." I'm female!
"And it could have been a nightmare."
And the guy, without blinking, said to me,
"It's not a nightmare.
"It would have been a nightmare if I'd had a knife.""
That's what the recovering alcoholic said.
The recovery alcoholic said, hiding his weapons.
Now, can we stop the horror stories because that's, frankly, harrowing,
-and talk about Episodes because I'm a big fan.
Now, you've just filmed the last season. Why does it have to end?
Uh, Tamsin didn't want to do any more.
-Well, boo to you.
I'm glad we're leaving you on a high.
-I think it's really good to know when to end stories.
Don't you? It's great to just go, "We're done, we're done."
Yeah, it did kind of feel like we've told our story.
-Leave them wanting more.
OK, we've been trying to get a clip of this.
It was quite difficult to get a pre-watershed-friendly clip
-but here we go.
You want to loosen up. Don't hunch your shoulders.
-Those are my shoulders!
Now, you want to have both hands tight on the grip.
-It's loud, it's loud!
It's loud! It's loud! It's loud!
-Well done, darling.
That was no bloody car door.
All right. Just give me the weapon.
I am never doing this again because it was loud!
-All right, my turn.
-Great wrist action.
-Thanks. Did that look like...?
What was that, like, a 357?
-That was a Smith & Wesson 44. That was a big cannon.
I mean, I'd stood there for a long time.
That's why my arms looked so toned.
Because it was a whole day I stood there like that.
-OK, I want to show you something very special now.
A couple of years ago, Renault
thought they'd spotted a gap in the market place,
and they've just created this. Have a look at this.
-This is delicious.
-WHISTLING FROM AUDIENCE
-The Alpine 110.
-"Al-peen." It's a fast Renault.
It's an "Al-peen". OK.
Now, the Porsche Cayman is £40,000 and up.
So Renault thought, we can offer a cheaper car.
So it's about 250 horsepower, 1,200 kilograms, it's mid-engined.
It's sexy as hell. Look at that, it's just perfect.
And it's developed by the guys at Renault Sport.
And they know a thing or two about making great fast cars.
-Except there's one problem.
It's not cheaper than a Porsche Cayman, is it?
-It's about £60,000 that thing.
-That is the slight issue.
They identified the gap in the market,
then they totally missed the gap in the market!
And it's actually more expensive than a Porsche Cayman.
And it's also named after a toilet cleaner.
Alpine. It's Alpine Fresh.
Does he look like a man who buys his own toilet cleaner?
Yeah, he doesn't know!
Why can't I buy my own toilet cleaner?
Do you buy your own toilet cleaner?
Do you go to the shops and buy toilet cleaner?
Whoa, why's everyone asking me!
Ask him, Rory. Do it from that side as well.
-Name one brand of toilet cleaner.
Fairy Liquid! Fairy Liquid!
-The toilet! You wash the...
-With Fairy Liquid.
-You wash your toilet with Fairy Liquid.
-After you do the dishes.
-409. That's in the States.
-That's a car!
The stuff with the funny neck on it so you can get under the rim,
All right. Time to see how your training session went
with the loving, caring, kind, tender, gentle Chris Harris.
Let's take a look.
What's the fastest you've been in a car?
-Hm, I think about 19mph.
-19 or 90?
This could be interesting. Let's go.
-Just be nice, all right?
-No, nothing gets done if you're not nice.
-OK. I'll try.
OK, full power.
-You've got 7,000 revs, use them!
Second, third gear now.
-Ooh, it's in there somewhere.
You know the bit on the show where you have to set the fast lap?
-That's this bit. You're aware of that, aren't you?
-Is this it?
-We need a sundial to time this, not a stopwatch.
Keep going down here. Down here, straight.
Braking hard now. Right, right.
-You said right!
-Just say every bit.
-Oh... Round there, round there, to the right.
This is the famous Hammerhead, don't get it wrong.
Left, left, left, left.
Well, that's no bloody good, is it? What are you...
What are you doing?
I'm really glad you're here, you've been very helpful in many ways, um.
But, er, I'm feeling a kind of, um, a wave of anger coming from you.
And I'm just interested in what that's all about?
I'm angry because we're trying to go fast
and you're not going fast yet. I just want to go fast.
I am going fast.
-Faster than I was.
-You think you're going fast.
You're a teacher.
If you get angry when I can't quite do what you're asking me to do,
that's going to reflect badly on you, not on me.
So I think you just need to calm down.
Maybe we can just start by saying "please"?
-Or...and "thank you".
-If I use those pleasantries, will you go faster?
-Are you sure?
-Yes, I will.
Right, are we ready?
-Teach me. Don't point.
-Can we, can we go... Can we please...
..move the steering wheel in a rightwards direction.
-Now? Before I'm driving?
-Now, please, before we go. Let's go.
And now accelerate.
And use the throttle.
And to second gear, please.
And to third gear, please, if you feel like it, thank you.
And now fourth. Thank you.
And over to the left but avoid the cameraman because that would be bad.
Now, down the end here.
Come on! Get on...
Please hurry up.
-Where am I going?
-Left. Left, that's good. Over there.
-Maybe just also say where I'm supposed to go.
-OK, OK. OK!
Come on, Tamsin!
I know you've got it in you, come on!
And, can you please, please brake between the 100 and the 50.
-Brake, brake, brake! Brake.
Third, third gear, please. Left. Left.
I feel like we've been through something there.
-How do you feel?
-I feel a bit...
-You have improved as a driver.
And that I have improved as a human being.
-Win, win, win.
-Now, get out of the
and just think about how you've been behaving.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
That was great. You see what you get? You see what you get?
I can't help it.
-No, she was very, very good. She really was.
It looked pretty slippery out there too.
It's the worst conditions that have ever been experienced on Top Gear.
In three episodes!
I'm not sure I agree with that but... Sure, what ever you say!
I can't wait to see your time, but we'll do that little bit later.
Now, I want to talk about ancient history.
See, 40 years ago, if you lived in Britain
and wanted a fast car that wasn't a pain to live with,
you were stuck with something like this, the Triumph Dolomite Sprint.
Yeah, the '70s kind of sucked.
But one humble hatchback was about to change all of that forever.
'The original Volkswagen Golf GTI lands in the UK.
'To prove you can have practicality and proper performance.'
The GTI was quicker than most sports cars.
0 to 60 took barely eight seconds.
By '70s standards, that was warp speed.
'The GTI was a game-changer and, in the mid-1980s,
'with the rest of the world running to catch up,
'VW dropped this.'
The second-generation Golf GTI.
Big bumpers and big attitude.
Damn, this thing's good!
'But then came the 1990s.
'And the GTI became heavier and uglier.
'The Mk4 was so porky
'it was actually slower to 60 than the '70s original.
'But VW wasn't done yet.'
That is more like it.
Yes. The Mk5.
Loads more power, way more nimble,
this was a hot hatch for the noughties.
And by 2009, with the Mk6,
VW had officially rediscovered its mojo.
The GTI was back.
And that brings us 40 years after the original GTI
landed in the UK, to this,
the Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S.
The most powerful production Golf ever.
nearly three times as many as that original GTI from the '70s.
And that's the kind of inflation I think we can all get behind.
And because it's a proper old school Golf, all the power heads that way.
By rights, front wheel drive cars like this should understeer.
But the Clubsport S doesn't, it just grips and grips and grips.
How is it doing this?!
That just makes no sense.
This is a fast, fast car.
HE SIGHS AND LAUGHS
Yes, yes, yes!
You can almost smell the engineering quality.
It feels like 40 years of perfecting the hot hatch formula.
It feel sophisticated.
It feels expensive.
Which, I'm afraid, it is.
In fact, this Clubsport S model costs £34,000.
That's nearly three grand more than a Ford Focus RS,
which has more power, four-wheel-drive and rear seats.
Did I not mention that?
Well, yeah, as part of their weight-saving measures,
Volkswagen has chopped out the rear bench and replaced it with...
a pole and some garden netting.
The rear parcel shelf has also gone.
Along with most of the insulation.
They've even ditched the floor mats.
And there's no armrest!
And guess how much that crash diet saves?
30 kg. I mean, you can put that back on after a big kebab.
The Clubsport has all the performance,
but almost none of the practicality.
It's like it's forgotten what hot hatches stand for.
I'd argue this isn't really a hot hatch at all.
So, if it's not a hot hatch, what is it?
Well, ask Volkswagen and they'll tell you
it's a two-seater sports car with an appetite for racetracks.
One racetrack in particular.
The scariest circuit on the planet.
13 miles and 73 corners of twisting, terrifying tarmac.
And the spiritual home of the Clubsport S.
This is officially the fastest front-wheel drive car ever
to lap this track.
It was developed here, tested here.
Every detail has been tweaked
to make this go as fast as possible out there.
It even has sticky tyres,
fade resistant brakes and proper functional spoilers.
So, what's this track-ready Golf really like?
To find out, I've turned up to a typical German track day
to see if the Clubsport S can keep up with the locals.
Who, let's face it, seem to take things pretty seriously.
Yes, getting the very best out of the Golf in this field
was going to take some real driving talent.
Let's do this.
Hi, Rory. Welcome to The Green Hell!
Yeah, why don't you show me around?
For you, I got a special present.
A map of the Nordschliefe, then you know where we are exactly.
-You think we can keep up?
-Ach, no problem.
With Sabine in confident mood,
we headed out to see what the Golf was made of.
It's like a little go-kart.
A front-wheel-driven go-kart.
So much power!
-Ahh, I love the Carousel.
-OK, now I'm scared.
I love it!
THEY BOTH SCREAM
Your name is Rory Reid or Rory Worried?!
I'm very worried right now! Oh, my...
'Now, I was keen to really drill down into the merits
'of the Golf's chassis dynamics...'
'But then Sabine spotted some prey.'
Oh, there are our enemies!
OK. We have some cars up ahead.
So we went hunting.
Come on, little Golf!
-What is it?
-That's a 3 Series BMW. Later!
I wonder how he feels being overtaken by a Golf?
I think we need another victim.
-I can see a Porsche.
That looks like... It's a Cayman R.
-A Cayman R?
-Yeah. The quick one.
Nyeeerrrr! Bye-bye, baby.
It's a Cayman GT4!
We're just giant-killing right now.
-I'm going to start writing these down.
'In the hands of Sabine,
'the Golf wasn't just keeping up with the locals...'
'..it was owning them.'
-Come on, little Golf.
Look at this!
-That was a Carrera 4 GTS.
-That is a £90,000 car.
Which made me wonder, while we were out here,
could the Golf actually overtake a million quid's worth?
Only one way to find out.
Whoohoo! Go, go, go, go!
Come on, come on, come on.
-That is a Corvette, oh, my God.
-That's the CL6.
That's 90 grand.
There's a Golf GTI on your tail!
Sabine, I'm trying to write here.
'But Sabine was in the zone.'
'She was braking later...
'..on the power earlier.'
That's a GT3. They're 100 grand!
The Golf was astonishing.
-'Now past the half million pound mark...'
-We need more.
'..Sabine wasn't done yet.'
-Come on, come on, come on.
-What is it?
-That looks like a Porsche 911 Turbo.
-I'll catch you, my friend.
Oh, you are on it, you are on it.
-We're catching him, we're catching him!
Get out of my way!
-How much is it?
With 700 grands' worth of overtakes now in the bag,
nothing was safe from our little hatchback.
-What is that?
-That's a Lamborghini.
-That's a Lamborghini, that's a 570 SuperLeggera!
And I mean nothing.
-Yay, we're coming!
-Oh, my God!
Oh, my God.
'Then, around the next corner...'
-One more, one more.
It's a 911 GT3 RS!
If you get this, you've done it. Get him, get him!
Come on, little Golf.
Are we going to get the GT3, are we going to get him?
Can we overtake him?
-We got him!
-Yeah! We got him!
-We got him!
Have some of that! Have some of that!
You are not human, you are not human.
I love my job.
APPLAUSE AND CHEERING
Great driving, Sabine, great driving. You crushed everything!
Yeah. Even him.
-No, the car was really great.
Good handling, like a little go-kart, so I had so much fun.
I think you had a little bit of fun as well, Rory.
I was having fun up to a point and then, you know,
my stomach was churning around a little bit but we got there.
-Not too bad?
-It was touch and go.
-Touch and go?
-Touch and go.
All right. Not that we don't trust Rory's math,
but we added it all up back at the office,
and you passed £1.1 million worth of cars out there.
Way to go!
I must say...
I could have done 2 million,
but I had that heavy, fat oaf in my passenger seat.
-I thought we were friends!
Downhill, yes, but uphill... Nyeh!
OK, all right,
can we just take a minute to appreciate the Clubsport S?
All right? 34 grand is a lot for a hot hatch
but that's cheap for something
that can annihilate six-figure supercars, OK?
Yeah, if you have a Sabine driving it.
-This is true.
-If it's you or me driving it,
it's just an expensive Golf with no back seat.
All right, I take your point.
Sabine, we're going to talk more about that lap over on Extra Gear later on, OK?
Yeah, that's right, check it out.
Ladies and gentlemen, Sabine Schmitz.
So, no pressure, then.
Yeah, what, so, I have to follow that?
-Is that deliberate?
All right, how cool was that?
That was really, really brilliant.
All right, now, it's dream garage, OK?
You have £100,000 to spend,
you want something exciting but just a little bit scary.
Something that will get the blood pumping but not too much, you know?
What do you get?
OK, I could go BAC Mono, the car that looks like an F1 car.
Superb engine. Chevy Corvette maybe, Stingray.
What is it with you and Corvette Stingrays?
-Cayman GT4 with shaved down rear tyres
for a bit of slidy-slidy.
Mm-hmm. OK, both good answers.
Both wrong answers.
Because if you want to spend £100,000 on something exciting
but a bit scary, you want one of these.
That is the Bunning Lowlander Widebody 380 HD.
-That's what you want.
-What the hell is that?
Well, that's a rear-end muck spreader, obviously.
HD stands for high definition.
-How do you know that?
-Everybody knows that.
I don't know that.
These people all know that. You know that?
-Yeah, thanks, cheers.
So that thing just spreads...poo?
Well, yeah, it spreads poo, but that's not all it spreads.
-Want to know what else it spreads?
What else does it spread?
A melon, a shed and a Volvo. Check this out.
This is the Bunning Lowlander Widebody 380 HD.
And it spreads muck. Really well.
Check this out.
OK. I got my trusty assistant with me today, she's super-confident.
-It's Tamsin Greig.
-Let's rock and roll.
Mind my melons.
I think this is going to be fun, Tam.
Oh, it's an melon storm. Wow!
What a mess.
Next is the shed.
OK, Tam, he's all loaded, that is a shed in the chute.
Let's make some matchsticks.
Are you having fun?
There's still one side of it left, being a bit stubborn.
OK, Tam, I got the perfect thing
to get rid of that last piece of wood.
Our scrapped Volvo.
OK, this is the big one, Tam, we're going to need full power, I think.
There goes the bonnet.
Oh, the poor Volvo!
I've never seen you so excited!
Oh, there goes the wheel!
There's a lot of legroom in that car now.
So, there you have it. That is the Bunning Lowlander Widebody 380 HD.
It spreads stuff. All over the place!
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
That's a poo spreader.
What kind of animal produces the kind of poo
that needs a machine like that?
It doesn't matter. Any animal.
It'll spread anything, anywhere, any time.
-I have never seen you look so happy.
I think you enjoyed yourself too in the big tractor.
That was it, because I was the one making the things and the things...
But I knew you'd know about this stuff because you play
a farmer in The Archers, don't you?
I play a farmer on Radio 4's...
You don't know about this because you never ask me any questions.
-On a programme called The Archers.
Is that an archery show, what is that?
Oh, tell him.
The Archers is a long-running radio show on Radio 4,
started in 1951, I think?
And it's about a made up place called Ambridge.
You've been on a radio show since 1951?
-Not that long. '91, yeah.
I let them kind of warm it up for 30 years before I joined it.
How did I not know this?
Because you don't ask me any questions.
So, yeah, I've done a lot of stuff with muck spreading and, erm,
my character drives a huge combine harvester
which is kind of the size of a bungalow.
-Ooh, what kind of combine harvester?
-A big one.
Size of a bungalow.
Is it like an International Harvester?
Is it a John Deere? You know what I mean, what is it?
It's like a chair in a radio studio.
But I stand on the chair to get a height differential.
-Because then you can hear the difference in height
when I'm up there and someone's shouting to me...
-So it sounds a tall machine.
-You really do?
-So you record your pieces standing on a chair?
And shouting down to the person who's not in the combine harvester.
You should see me when I'm riding a horse.
All right, now...
it is time to see how you went around our test track.
-Are you ready? The big moment.
-How do you think you did?
-I was really afraid.
-Really afraid. And...
And I was most afraid of the weather.
And being in the car on my own.
-But was it fun? Did you enjoy it?
It was kind of like, you know when you've had just too much coffee?
-And you remember each coffee
but then you're left with this feeling
-that you don't know what to do with.
So, if that's enjoyment, then yes.
What do you think? Do you think she had a good time?
Well, yeah, shall we take a look?
Yeah, I think before we watch the lap though,
it needs to be said that it was really, really slippery.
Almost flooding conditions, so...
Yeah, it was horrendous out there.
-Just shy of ice.
All right, let's take a look.
OK, here we go. Tamsin Greig, GT86.
Pretty good off the line.
Slick gear change, up into third.
Don't know if I should change gear. Should I change gear?
Oh, it's telling me to change gear. Well, it's too late.
Now, look at this. Good speed and look how wet it is.
Puddles everywhere. Third gear.
-Not quite on the line.
That's the grass, there, Tamsin. You must have...
Yeah, you were a bit scared there, weren't you? You went on the grass.
Here we go, third gear. Or are you in second?
I think you're in second there.
I think you're being cautious is the word, there. Cautious.
I will pay for that. No, Matt will pay for that.
Was that the gearbox again? Was that the gearbox again?
Third gear down the straight. Braking hard.
Look how wet it is. I do feel sorry for you, it was properly wet.
Come on, get on the power.
Get on the power.
OK, I'll pay for that one. Matt will pay for the first.
So, down the back straight.
Oh... Breathe, come on, breathe.
You weren't breathing in training, weren't you? No, you weren't.
There's the follow-through. Safely navigated.
Oh, it's really brilliant when you go fast round corners!
Through the tyres.
You can actually accelerate round corners!
I've never been able to do that in north-west London.
Look at your line.
Your line was always really good into that corner, wasn't it?
-Was it? Was it?
-That's the most unsighted corner on the circuit,
but you always nailed it.
-It's what I'd call...
-OK, now, considering it was a swimming pool out there...
..are you happy with that?
It looks a lot slower than it felt.
It was like an old lady going to the shops.
-Chris, how do you think she did?
I think we've got a good, solid time and we've got someone that's alive.
Yeah. Yeah, yeah. OK, are you ready?
Now, the time to beat is still 1:39.5
set by Max Whitlock, the Olympic demigod.
Have you ever seen his scissor work on the pommel horse?
-Fantastic. Really, really...
OK, never mind.
you went around our track...
-Here we go.
-..in one minute...
-That's a wet time!
-That's a wet time.
-That is a wet time.
-That's a wet time.
That's a wet time.
You're OK. You're OK.
-Look at that.
You're all right, you're OK. You're OK.
That's the second fastest wet time.
And the last wet time we had was not nearly that wet, I don't think.
-No, it wasn't.
-That's a fantastic job.
-OK, thank you.
Well, listen, we're yeah, you know, we're alive and, erm,
I haven't brought too much shame on the family.
-No shame on the family.
-We all win.
I did really, really secretly really enjoy it.
You should be proud of yourself. That was great.
Ladies and gentlemen, Tamsin Greig. Come on!
APPLAUSE AND CHEERING
You did great.
Couldn't have done it without you.
Thank you, well done.
-And you're still alive, so...
-Yeah, I am.
Now I want to talk sports cars.
Not big, intimidating, fire breathing supercar monsters,
but affordable, adorable, attainable cars.
Cars with romance, you know?
Now, you think about sports cars like that and there's only
one place that springs to mind, right?
There's just something about it, isn't there?
Especially if you're in a classic Italian sports car like this.
The Fiat 124 Spider.
Born in 1966, the 124 Spider was designed by Pininfarina.
It had a sparkly twin cam engine,
a cutting edge five-speed manual gearbox
and it weighed about as much as an actual spider.
And it was bellissima to drive.
The 124 Spider was so good, so timeless,
that Fiat kept building it for nearly two decades.
But that was 30 years ago.
And ever since, fans of simple,
sensibly priced Italian two-seaters have been left kind of hungry.
But now, Fiat has a new dish on the menu.
This is the Fiat 124 Spider Abarth.
Classic name, classic recipe.
Small, lightweight, brilliantly back to basics.
It's stick shift, rear-wheel drive
and the roof is not some complicated Transformer robot
of metal and motors.
It's just a little scrap of fabric that you operate using one of these.
Just pop it up...
..and pop it down.
Simple as that.
And when you get it out on the road,
you can really start to appreciate that beautiful simplicity.
Hello, parmigiana panna cotta.
Oh, right, the car.
See, this 124 is a throwback to a less complicated age.
Sure, sometimes you want a state-of-the-art sports car
with your torque vectoring and your magnetic adaptive damping
and a double clutch gearbox and...
a Wi-Fi enabled milk frother.
But sometimes, you just want to keep it simple. Right?
So, after a 30-year absence,
is this finally the genuine Italian sports car we've been waiting for?
Un caffe espresso, si prega?
Well, here's the problem.
I'm not really in Italy.
I'm in Los Angeles and this is a film set.
And this waiter, he's not called Alessandro or Giuseppe.
-His name is Hunter.
Can you read my film script?
And this 124 is not an Italian car.
Sure, it's got a Fiat badge on it and
a few bits of it come from Italy, but underneath, this is Japanese.
Specifically, it's one of these.
A Mazda Miata, or MX-5 as you guys call it.
And while pretty much every car in the world shares something
with another car...
..these two share pretty much everything.
Check out the Mazda's cabin.
And now check out the Fiat's cabin.
Wait, hang on. Which is which?
The 124 is even built in Japan
on the same production line as the MX-5.
Now, if you're going to borrow from a little sports car,
the MX-5 is definitely where you want to start.
However, the stuff the Italians have added...
..seems to have made it...worse.
You see, where the Mazda uses a naturally aspirated motor,
this 124 uses a turboed motor.
And, yeah, you get a bit of extra power.
168 horsepower, to be exact.
And this 124 will do 0-60 in 6.8 seconds
and has a top speed of 144mph.
That's quick enough to leave that Mazda in its dust.
But, and this may sound picky, but that's kind of my job...
..these kind of cars are meant to be all about instant throttle response
and high revs and keeping you connected to the chassis.
But here, when you put your foot down,
there's just that little bit of turbo lag.
That slight hesitation before things get going.
It's just enough to break the connection.
It's like trying to tie your shoelaces with boxing gloves on.
It's a pain in the ass.
So, the Mazda has the Fiat beaten on feel.
But at least the 124 is cheap, right?
This one costs nearly 30 grand,
which is almost nine grand more than the fastest MX-5.
Now, don't get me wrong, this isn't an awful car.
But this was Fiat's chance to summon the ghosts of all those
classic Italian sports cars, to revive that '60s spirit.
And, yeah, it's a fun car to flick around
on a windy canyon road, but to call it the 124...
I don't know.
That name feels like it should have that '60s spirit and this car,
it just doesn't.
It's like, the way it looks...
All 21st-century retro.
It's just a bit fake.
So, if you want a two-seat Italian sports car that takes you back
to the golden age, and, come on, who doesn't?
I'm afraid I can't recommend the Fiat 124.
I can, however, recommend the Fiat 124.
If you want to live out all those '60s Italy fantasies,
and I really don't blame you if you do,
then why not do it in a car from '60s Italy?
# On days like these
# I wonder what became of you
# Maybe today
# You're singing songs with someone new... #
I wanted to like it, I really did. I really wanted to like it.
Yeah, you're right, you're right. It's a let-down.
I mean, I just can't get on board with the styling.
To me, it's kind of... I don't know, droopy.
It's such a disappointment.
And the worst thing is, it doesn't even feel rear-wheel drive
because it's got so much grip.
This is a beautiful moment.
We agree! CHEERING
-Right? We all hate it.
OK, on next week's show...
I'm the first person ever to review the Bugatti Chiron.
-Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
And I'm the first person ever to review the new
Ducati 1299 Superleggera.
And they gave me a Renault Twingo.
It's a big, big show. We'll see you then.
Matt LeBlanc's review of the Aston Martin DB11 is thwarted by Chris Harris and a very evil Mercedes. Elsewhere, Rory Reid and Sabine Schmitz go supercar hunting on Germany's fearsome Nurburgring race circuit with the help of the VW Golf Clubsport S, while actress Tamsin Greig takes to the Top Gear track in the new Reasonably Fast Car.