Episode 3 Top Gear


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Episode 3

Matt LeBlanc and Chris Harris buy second-hand sports cars at auction for a road trip across Honshu, and Rory has one night to discover the weirdest car culture Tokyo has to offer.


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Transcript


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CHEERING AND APPLAUSE

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Hello! And welcome to Top Gear.

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Tonight, we're all about one place - Japan.

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A country that has brought us some of the coolest,

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fastest cars of them all.

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But in recent years, Japan's suffered a sort of

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reverse mid-life crisis.

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It's stopped being crazy and fun and got all boring and Prius-y.

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But now there's a couple of signs Japan might just be getting its mojo

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back, so Chris went to investigate.

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First up is a new two-door rear-wheel drive coupe from Lexus.

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It's called the LC500,

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and while it might look as sharp as a samurai sword...

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..this version is powered by an appealingly blunt instrument.

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ENGINE REVS LOUDLY

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Woo-hoo-hoo!

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Have some of that!

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Seriously, who needs a stereo when you've got a soundtrack like that?

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This retro anthem isn't being played by a clever, futuristic hybrid.

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Underneath the bonnet is a proper, old school, electric-free V8.

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O to 60, less than five seconds,

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top speed, nearly 170mph.

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We keep being told the fuel-gargling petrol engine is dead,

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but if responsible, conscientious Lexus still thinks it has legs,

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we might be good for a few years yet.

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Especially when that engine is kept in check by four-wheel steering,

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and has been bolted to the stiffest chassis Lexus has ever produced.

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So when you get to a corner, yeah, it can handle those, too.

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TYRES SCREECH

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It turns nicely, grip builds,

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good traction, but it's rear-wheel drive, so it's playful.

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That engine's power and torque is perfectly matched to the amount of

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grip available, so I'm getting those lovely, little delicate slides

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in the exit of the corners.

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It encourages you to behave like a bit of a wally.

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TYRES SCREECH

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It's so un-Lexus, it's wonderful!

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But it is a Lexus, so it's not all good news.

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It starts at £76,000, which is too much.

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It weighs nearly two tonnes,

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so on a track it doesn't stop very well,

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and it is a bit...overcomplicated.

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Four, five, six, seven...

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Ten gears?!

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Now I'm all for getting more for your money, but if you have to

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deploy long division to work out what gear you're in,

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that might be overkill.

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But while the LC500 isn't perfect...

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..I do admire it.

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It stands out from the crowd.

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It's not trying to be a Porsche, or a Jaguar, or a BMW

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or any other European coupe.

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It's Japan doing its own thing,

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and it's not the only one.

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Because...

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..there's also this.

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The new Civic Type R.

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Honda's not-so-subtle antidote to all of Europe's very fast...

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..very samey hot hatches.

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But the question is,

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does it have the trousers to back up the mouth?

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Oh, yes, it does!

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Yes, yes, yes!

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TYRES SCREECH

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This is a cracker of a hot hatch.

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It's got a two litre turbo-charged motor, 316 horsepower,

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and it weighs just under 1,400 kg.

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That is potent.

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Hitting 60 in 5.8 seconds,

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and with a top speed of 169mph,

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this will give any hot hatch a run for its money.

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I just love it!

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And it's got a proper manual gearbox.

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Look at this stick down here with a perfect Type R aluminium gear knob,

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and it has a sensible number of gears, too.

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And while more and more hot hatches now turn up with sensible,

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grippy four-wheel drive,

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the Civic still sends all of its power to the front.

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And it's all the better for it.

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It's so much more fun than a four-wheel drive hot hatch,

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because it's got grip when you want it,

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but when you don't, it'll do this.

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# One, two, three, four, five, break down. #

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TYRES SCREECH

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You get in it, and you grow horns.

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Woohoohoo!

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What we have here, then, is a car that Japan should be truly proud of.

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Except, that is, for one tiny detail.

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You see, the Type R's not actually made in Japan at all.

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It's made in...

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-WHISPERS

-..Swindon.

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And there's nothing wrong with Swindon -

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you just don't really associate it with excitement, do you?

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And then, of course, there's the way it looks.

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Clearly, it's been designed only to appeal to children.

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But here's the issue -

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this thing costs over 30 grand.

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£30,000!

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So even if you were young and daft enough to think it

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looked good enough to buy,

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you wouldn't be able to afford to buy one.

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But look at it another way,

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if you're in the market for a new Japanese performance car...

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..this Honda might just be a bit of a bargain.

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It may have 150-something horsepower less,

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but I suspect this Civic might be about as quick around this track

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as that LC500.

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Time, then, for a race.

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Which means we need a driver for that Lexus.

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No, it's not the Stig, it's the Stig's ninja cousin.

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Where is he?

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Yes, most impressive.

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I think you're being silly now.

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Get in the car.

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Kuruma!

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Whoa!

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Player One, Lexus LC500, versus

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Player Two, Honda Civic Type R.

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One lap, winner takes all!

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Let's do this.

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He's got me off the line.

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Come on, Ninja Stig. Look at him, he's sideways everywhere!

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I sort of want to beat him, but I sort of don't want to beat him.

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What does a Ninja Stig do if he gets beaten?

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Let's get up the inside of him. Oh, he's looking lively!

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Now I've got to outbrake him.

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I've got him, I've got him, I've got him on the brakes!

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I've done him!

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What fantastic brakes.

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Now he's got grunt!

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There he goes!

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He's got traction issues.

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This is so impressive for a hatchback!

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TYRES SCREECH

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I've got brakes, I've got grip, I've got turning.

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Oh, he's running wide, he's running wide! This is my chance, my chance!

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Come on, little Honda! Come on, little Honda!

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ENGINE REVS LOUDLY

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Yes!

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Player Two, Honda Civic Type R, wins!

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Well done, little Honda!

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CHEERING AND APPLAUSE

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So the Honda beat the Lexus?

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Wow! Impressive. And you really liked the Civic, right?

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It's brilliant. The chassis is fantastic, and it's SO fast.

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It really is the best hot hatchback you can buy.

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What? Whoa, wait a minute.

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We said the Ford Focus RS was the best you could buy,

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so I went out and bought one.

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Well, you'll have to buy one of these now.

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No, I can't do that.

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I mean, look at it. It's hideous.

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OK, I admit it. I mean, it's disgusting.

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-Yeah.

-But it's so good to drive, I can forgive the way it looks,

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and the best thing about being behind the wheel -

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you don't see how it looks from the outside.

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They should put that in the commercial.

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OK, now, earlier today we put both cars around our test track in the

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hands of the Stig. Not great conditions out there,

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but the Lexus did it

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in a 1:25:6,

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so that goes there,

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and the Civic did it

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in a 1:25:6.

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The exact same time, so that goes right there.

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Oh... That's great work.

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It goes in there.

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-Or down the bottom, who gives a

-BLEEP!

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I told you they were close.

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-Yep, very close.

-And that time makes the Civic

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the fastest front-wheel drive car,

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and the fastest hot hatchback ever around our track,

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-and that's got to be worth a round of applause.

-Oh, yeah.

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APPLAUSE

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Well done, you guys. OK, come on.

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Let's talk about '90s Japanese sports cars,

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because they were awesome.

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A golden era of fast, affordable performance.

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Problem is, the ones that made it to the UK have been mostly crashed or

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modified, and the ones that haven't are now annoyingly expensive.

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That's right. Look at this lovely Honda NSX.

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A couple of years ago? 30 grand.

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Today, 60 grand.

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But it turns out there is a place you can pick up immaculate, old

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Japanese sports cars for a fraction of the price.

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That's right. It's called Japan.

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We've been sent to Tokyo,

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where we've been told to go and find two of Japan's finest classic

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'90s sports cars.

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Oh, how cool is this, huh?

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Three days in Japan, and all we have to do is buy a couple of old cars.

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That leaves us plenty of time to do cool Japanese stuff, like temples,

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and swords, and ninjas, and sushi.

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-Well, I've got a list of sights I want to see, too.

-Oh, yeah?

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Yeah, yeah, Toyota Century.

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-Uh-huh.

-Honda S660, maybe even a first-generation Estima.

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Yeah, OK, so hold on, these sights you're talking about,

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are they all cars?

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Well, technically the Estima was a minivan, but you'll see cars

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here you won't see anywhere else on the planet, man.

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Japan's like its own weird little car ecosystem.

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Yeah, look, I know this is a car show, and I know you love cars,

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and you know I love cars, but I think...

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-Cars are everything...

-I think you think about them way too...

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-Hi.

-Oh, wow, a challenge already, huh?

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"Here, have one million yen each."

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-Oh, wow, look at that.

-My kind of challenge.

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-OK. Thank you.

-Thank you.

-Thank you.

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Thank you.

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Thank you.

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OK, ready, last one, here we go.

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Right, I'm done. We're done.

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Oh, he got me on the way out. Did you see that?

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Oh, oh-oh, oh...

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OK, "With this cash you will now head to the USS Tokyo car auction

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"in Chiba Ken and each buy a sports car to ship back to Britain and sell."

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-Oh, yes!

-"The presenter who clears the most profit on their car is the

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"winner. Oh, and by the way, the auction has already started.

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-"Better get a move on before all the good cars go."

-Oh, OK.

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-Right, subway's this way.

-But, but, all right...

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Well, two things. First of all, I'm just going to pretend

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I didn't see that thing you're carrying your money in,

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and two, why take the subway? This is a car show, not a train show.

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The most efficient public transport system on the planet

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versus rush-hour in the busiest city on the planet.

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OK, but if we take a taxi,

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we might get to see one of your Toyota Enemas.

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-It's an Estima, and the tube's faster. Bye!

-OK...

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So if it was a race Chris wanted, then fine,

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because while he became acquainted with Tokyo's very Japanese

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subway system...

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Er...

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Oh, dear.

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Taxi!

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I discovered the city has the world's sharpest-dressed cab drivers.

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Yep, this would be my most relaxing win yet.

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Nice, comfortable taxi.

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My man here, white hat, white gloves,

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so he can never leave any fingerprints.

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Yeah, that's probably just a cultural thing.

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I'm sure it's no big deal.

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I haven't got a clue where I am now.

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Excuse me, do you speak English?

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No, OK, sorry. Chiba Ken?

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-Chiba Ken.

-Chiba Ken.

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And while Chris was busy unnerving the locals...

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Oh, sorry, sorry.

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..my driver was slicing through Tokyo's sticky rush-hour traffic,

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and we were getting along like a house on fire.

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MATT ATTEMPTS JAPANESE

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THEY CHUCKLE

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Do you like that one?

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I'm just kidding, I'm not really pregnant.

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Oh, just killing time in the tunnel, you know.

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In fact, it wasn't so much a question of who was going to win,

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but whether there'd be anything left at the auction by the time Chris got there.

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Here he goes. The driver's taking his time, a nice, steady stop,

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so it's smooth, and then the driver opens the doors.

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That takes too long.

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And then we count to, what, seven?

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One, two, three...

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So, unsurprisingly enough, I was first to the auction.

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Wow!

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And it was massive.

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Oh, man, there's just so much great stuff,

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and it just goes on for miles.

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The USS Tokyo car auction is one of the biggest in the world,

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selling around 15,000 cars in a day,

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including hundreds of mint condition '90s sports cars.

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GTR, there's a good car right there.

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But with only one hour left until closing,

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I needed to start bidding.

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Jeez...

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But how?

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Here, over 2,500 bidders can compete with up to 12 cars selling

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every 20 seconds.

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And with a million yen at stake, this was less of an auction,

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and more some sort of weird casino.

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Oh, yeah.

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Oh...

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Did I just buy something?

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Well, well, well, better late than never,

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but he still had to cross the world's most distracting car park.

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Oh, Supra! Now, that... That might be right in my price range.

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The Evo 7.

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Oh, look at this! I mean, where do you turn?

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Shall I get that one?

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It's huge!

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Ah!

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Hey, there you are. Where you been?

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Under most of Tokyo.

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-What are you bidding on?

-Ah, well, I'm not really sure.

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I think this is the price going up, obviously, and that's

0:18:070:18:09

the lot number, and what does that say?

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-Can you read that?

-No.

-That must be what the car is, right?

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If I can't read that, why would I be able to read that?

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Well, if you look, this is the same in all of them.

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But there's only... There are fixed...

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Maybe that means...

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Have you got an idea of what you want to buy?

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I want something fast, manual, fast,

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maybe like a Skyline GTR.

0:18:280:18:30

That would be nice. Yeah, I'm sure you'll find one.

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He wouldn't. 1 million yen is, in fact, about seven grand.

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-Oh, what's this?

-That one, that one, that one, that one, that one.

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Ah, missed it!

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So while Matt was set for a disappointment,

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at least he'd worked out his own bidding strategy.

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Are you trying to buy the entire auction?

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No, no, I want that one, I want it, I want it, I want it, I want it,

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I want it. Come on! There we go, there we go.

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I got it. I got it!

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-I think I got it. Did you get one?

-Yep.

-You did?

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-What did you get?

-It's gone now. You can't see it,

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but I am now the proud owner of a car.

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The question was - what did he buy?

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In fact, what did I buy?

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It's like ordering food in a foreign restaurant when you don't speak

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the language, you know what I mean?

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It's like, I'm really hoping I got the grilled fillet,

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and not the poached anus.

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-Come on.

-What?

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-Oh, here we go.

-Oh...

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-Now that is my car!

-That's yellow.

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And there was nothing anus-y about it.

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Mazda RX-7.

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Wow.

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That's the one with the twin turbo rotary engine, right?

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Yep, absolutely right.

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Yep, the incredibly unreliable twin turbo rotary engine?

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Come on, don't buy into that. They can be a little bit temperamental,

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but that's the whole point.

0:19:450:19:46

-What, what, what?

-When you go abroad,

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you don't order a pint of John Smith's, you order the local beer.

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This, here, is the local beer.

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Only Japan could have made this car.

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Only Japan shouldn't have made this car.

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The rotary motor was junk.

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They rev beautifully, they're sweet, they're lovely little things.

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They wear out in ten minutes!

0:20:040:20:07

Nonsense. She was a minter, and, at an easy 15 grand in the UK,

0:20:070:20:12

I had hit the jackpot.

0:20:120:20:14

Question was, had Matt?

0:20:140:20:16

Oh, yeah!

0:20:160:20:18

That's me, right there.

0:20:180:20:20

The Nissan Skyline R34 GTR, huh?

0:20:200:20:26

That is a classic. Everyone knows the GTR.

0:20:260:20:29

Everyone apart from you, Matthew.

0:20:290:20:31

-What do you mean?

-That's a GTT.

0:20:310:20:34

-GTT?

-GTT.

-I thought it was a typo!

0:20:340:20:36

No, no, no...

0:20:360:20:38

So, do you know what makes a GTT special?

0:20:390:20:42

-I, I don't. What?

-That it's missing a turbocharger,

0:20:420:20:44

it's missing the front-driven axle, so it's only two-wheel drive,

0:20:440:20:48

it's missing a load of power.

0:20:480:20:50

-It's like a GTR, but just a bit

-BLEEP.

0:20:500:20:53

Cheaper, too.

0:20:530:20:55

A GTR could have fetched 40 grand in the UK, but annoyingly,

0:20:550:20:59

my GTT was worth about the same as Chris's RX-7.

0:20:590:21:03

Am I crazy about the body?

0:21:030:21:04

No, and even on the GTR, I wasn't crazy about the body shape.

0:21:040:21:08

-I think it's...

-It's not even the car you thought you'd bought!

0:21:080:21:10

-Well, I didn't know what I... I was surprised I got a car...

-Hi.

0:21:100:21:13

-Sorry. How are you? Thank you.

-Thank you.

0:21:130:21:15

Thank you.

0:21:160:21:18

"Well done on buying some cars."

0:21:180:21:20

-OK.

-"We've laid on the transport to get them home."

0:21:200:21:22

-That's nice of the producers.

-"The transport leaves in two days' time from Enbu.

0:21:220:21:26

-"Please drive there."

-So we have to take them on a trip now?

0:21:260:21:29

-Yes.

-It's a good thing you bought a reliable car.

0:21:290:21:31

-Can I trade it back in...?

-No, you can't, nope.

0:21:310:21:35

On the road, and our destination at Enbu

0:21:380:21:40

was just a couple of hundred miles to the north of Tokyo.

0:21:400:21:44

But with two days to reach it,

0:21:440:21:46

we'd been told first to make a detour towards the hills,

0:21:460:21:50

and that left us with plenty of time to get to know what we'd bought.

0:21:500:21:54

Three reasons why the RX-7 rocked.

0:21:550:21:59

First of all, the styling.

0:21:590:22:00

It must be one of the best looking Japanese cars ever.

0:22:000:22:03

Look at this bodywork. It's just shrunk over the shape of the car

0:22:030:22:07

in the most lovely shapes.

0:22:070:22:09

Second of all, pop-up headlights.

0:22:090:22:12

Everyone loves a pop-up headlight.

0:22:120:22:15

Thirdly, this was the first-ever sequentially turbo-charged

0:22:150:22:19

rotary engine production car, and it made close to 300 horsepower.

0:22:190:22:24

Now, it didn't exactly start a rotary engine revolution.

0:22:240:22:29

In fact, the unique design of the Wankel engine, as it's known,

0:22:290:22:32

drinks so much fuel and oil

0:22:320:22:34

that no other manufacturer has ever followed suit.

0:22:340:22:37

But, when they were working well, as this one is now,

0:22:370:22:41

there's nothing like them.

0:22:410:22:43

It just revs perfectly.

0:22:430:22:45

And while the RX-7 and I were getting on famously,

0:22:460:22:49

over in his low-spec Skyline,

0:22:490:22:51

Matt has had time to put a positive spin on things.

0:22:510:22:55

OK, so I may not have chosen the car that I thought I'd chose,

0:22:550:22:57

but it turns out I accidentally made a pretty good choice.

0:22:570:23:00

This is basically a GTR.

0:23:000:23:02

It's got one turbo, instead of two,

0:23:020:23:04

one fewer thing to go wrong,

0:23:040:23:06

it's got rear-wheel drive instead of four-wheel drive,

0:23:060:23:09

so it's the purist's choice,

0:23:090:23:11

and this car has four-wheel steering.

0:23:110:23:14

Now that's the kind of technology you really only find on your latest

0:23:140:23:17

Ferraris and Porsches and Mercedes.

0:23:170:23:20

I'm accidentally awesome.

0:23:220:23:23

Before long, we reached the hills.

0:23:260:23:29

And pulling off the main highway,

0:23:300:23:32

our sports cars started to feel right at home.

0:23:320:23:35

These are great roads.

0:23:370:23:39

Now it becomes quite touge-like.

0:23:390:23:42

Japanese for mountain pass, touge roads are legendary.

0:23:420:23:46

Narrow, twisting tarmac,

0:23:480:23:49

where Japan's sports car enthusiasts have always come to play.

0:23:490:23:54

Oh, what is this? There's a guy in the road, guy in the road up here.

0:23:540:23:58

ARM SQUEAKS

0:24:000:24:02

I think he needs a little lube on his arm.

0:24:020:24:04

He is, um, squeaky.

0:24:040:24:06

All right, challenge.

0:24:070:24:09

"To test your car's performance before export to the UK,

0:24:090:24:12

"you will now race around the famous Gunsai touge road

0:24:120:24:16

"while each carrying a passenger."

0:24:160:24:18

Is that where we are now, the Gunsai touge?

0:24:180:24:21

-I guess so.

-I have wanted to come here all my life.

0:24:210:24:23

-Have you?

-This is where the Japanese best motoring guys used to skid

0:24:230:24:27

S2000s, MX-5s, sorry, Miata, for you.

0:24:270:24:30

Yeah. OK. All right, don't look now, but there are two very large,

0:24:300:24:35

mostly naked, men standing right behind you.

0:24:350:24:38

Yes, sumo wrestlers.

0:24:390:24:41

From a sport which actually bans its stars from driving,

0:24:410:24:44

they make ideal passenger seat ballast

0:24:440:24:47

to really put our sports cars to the test.

0:24:470:24:50

-Hi.

-They're never going to fit in the cars, are they?

0:24:500:24:54

Ahead of us lay a 1.4 mile loop of closed touge road.

0:24:540:24:59

Designed to test our cars' handling,

0:24:590:25:02

we'd be racing two laps of this fast, technical course.

0:25:020:25:06

Who would win in a fight between you two guys?

0:25:090:25:11

You. Ha-ha, that's what I'm talking about!

0:25:170:25:20

ENGINES REV

0:25:200:25:22

OK, we're a team...

0:25:220:25:24

We're a team?

0:25:250:25:27

TYRES SCREECH

0:25:340:25:36

What a start!

0:25:370:25:39

Yes!

0:25:390:25:40

Come on, baby, come on!

0:25:400:25:42

Tuck in behind me, Le Blanc. Get used to being there.

0:25:460:25:49

He can't overtake us here. He can't get us here!

0:25:590:26:02

Wrong, Harris, very wrong.

0:26:030:26:06

You cheeky little...

0:26:060:26:08

That's what I'm talking about! Woohoo!

0:26:090:26:12

Oh, a little too hot...

0:26:140:26:15

Nah!

0:26:230:26:25

I like that. We're through!

0:26:250:26:26

I'm sorry about that, he got me!

0:26:260:26:29

All right, come on, think light, big boy, think light!

0:26:290:26:31

With the road running out...

0:26:330:26:35

Feel that smooth, rotary power, my friend.

0:26:350:26:38

The RX-7 had just enough...

0:26:380:26:40

Come on, come on.

0:26:400:26:42

..to keep the GTT at bay.

0:26:420:26:44

It's a victory!

0:26:440:26:46

I would have had you if I didn't blow it in the hairpin down there.

0:26:580:27:01

It was close, it was close.

0:27:010:27:02

Do you think sumo mid-90s slightly ropey sports car racing

0:27:020:27:07

is a new sport?

0:27:070:27:09

I think absolutely, right? That's what my guy says.

0:27:090:27:13

With the day drawing to a close, leaving the touge roads behind,

0:27:140:27:19

we got back on the highway.

0:27:190:27:21

Well...almost.

0:27:210:27:22

-Oh, no.

-Chris, why are you stopped at the toll?

0:27:260:27:29

Why do you think I'm stopped at the toll?

0:27:290:27:32

I don't know why you're stopped at the toll, that's why I'm asking you.

0:27:320:27:36

MUFFLED VOICE

0:27:360:27:37

He's just shouting at me.

0:27:370:27:39

My Japanese is very weak.

0:27:400:27:43

It extends to... Honda.

0:27:430:27:46

Now, see, this is interesting.

0:27:460:27:48

This is where we find out how impatient Mr Harris is.

0:27:480:27:51

You watch what's going to happen here.

0:27:510:27:53

He has the patience of a gnat.

0:27:530:27:54

ANGRY VOICE ON TANNOY

0:27:540:27:56

I've got three people behind me now.

0:27:560:27:58

Back? Back?

0:27:580:27:59

Back?

0:27:590:28:01

TOLL OPERATOR SHOUTS

0:28:010:28:03

-BLEEP

-hell!

0:28:030:28:06

Finally free of the toll booths, the next challenge was dinner.

0:28:060:28:10

And we soon discovered that, no matter how far you travel,

0:28:110:28:15

food from motorway services...

0:28:150:28:17

Let's see what we've got here...

0:28:170:28:18

..sucks.

0:28:180:28:19

Oh!

0:28:190:28:21

Oh, that's not nice!

0:28:210:28:23

That's bad. Wow, I'm going to close that back up, OK?

0:28:240:28:28

That's going to get in the "wish we didn't get those" pile.

0:28:280:28:31

That was rank.

0:28:320:28:34

What about these? What are these? Some kind of egg thing.

0:28:340:28:37

Yeah.

0:28:390:28:40

-Come on.

-Eat that!

0:28:420:28:43

-Is it that bad?

-Eat that!

0:28:430:28:46

Suffice to say, the meal was an education.

0:28:550:28:58

So, after a hungry night,

0:29:010:29:03

the next morning we hit the road early for another day of discovery.

0:29:030:29:08

The Japanese are the masters of the weird car name.

0:29:080:29:11

Allow me to give you some examples.

0:29:110:29:13

The Suzuki Every Joypop Turbo - how about that one?

0:29:130:29:17

Or an Isuzu Mysterious Utility Wizard.

0:29:170:29:22

Or the Honda Lovely Lady Garden.

0:29:220:29:25

Those aren't real car names.

0:29:270:29:29

Yeah, you're right, I made the last one up, but the others, I promise you, are real.

0:29:290:29:33

But the last one was my favourite one.

0:29:330:29:35

We picked up the route to Enbu,

0:29:380:29:40

following the main highway north

0:29:400:29:42

and soon our journey took us into new territory.

0:29:420:29:45

Hey, Chris, look at this sign. What is that? Is that a Geiger counter?

0:29:460:29:50

That's a radiation meter. Look at that.

0:29:500:29:52

Oh, crikey. So we're actually quite close to, erm...

0:29:520:29:56

Fukushima, where they had the big disaster in 2011.

0:29:560:29:59

We were approaching the Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

0:30:010:30:04

Critically damaged by a tsunami in the wake of one of the largest

0:30:050:30:09

earthquakes ever recorded in Japan,

0:30:090:30:11

a 20km exclusion zone was set up around the plant.

0:30:110:30:15

In one day, the entire local population

0:30:150:30:19

was evacuated to escape the dangers of radiation.

0:30:190:30:23

Experts predict the clear-up operation at Daiichi

0:30:230:30:26

could take up to 40 years.

0:30:260:30:28

For now, the area remains largely uninhabited.

0:30:300:30:33

An area that we were granted special permission to witness first-hand.

0:30:400:30:44

We're 5km from the reactor that blew here.

0:30:490:30:53

Are we really that close?

0:30:530:30:56

You read about it and you see the pictures,

0:30:570:30:59

but until you come here and just see the way people have abandoned

0:30:590:31:04

their lives involuntarily...

0:31:040:31:06

It doesn't really hit you until you see it, does it?

0:31:080:31:11

No, it doesn't.

0:31:110:31:13

You think about all the people that got displaced over this.

0:31:150:31:18

There were 160,000 people here.

0:31:180:31:22

That's the population of Oxford and they were just gone in one day.

0:31:220:31:26

Gone, bye.

0:31:260:31:27

Just terrible.

0:31:290:31:31

Just seems that somebody saved up their pennies and bought their dream

0:31:400:31:43

Porsche and they've driven it home one night from work,

0:31:430:31:46

parked it up and then never got to see it again.

0:31:460:31:48

You don't own a car like this unless you love cars

0:31:480:31:51

and yet the dangers here were so great that they were willing

0:31:510:31:54

to just leave it behind and run.

0:31:540:31:56

Kids' shoes and...

0:32:020:32:05

Dishware and...

0:32:050:32:07

Whoa.

0:32:070:32:09

I mean, this was probably a family lived here

0:32:090:32:11

and just, their whole lives were just gone.

0:32:110:32:14

MATT SIGHS

0:32:160:32:17

This is awful.

0:32:190:32:22

It was time to move on.

0:32:220:32:23

That's a hard one to shake.

0:32:280:32:29

That's a hard one to shake.

0:32:300:32:32

I've got to say, that was eerie.

0:32:370:32:38

I mean, the size of the exclusion zone...

0:32:380:32:40

I don't think I'll ever forget that.

0:32:400:32:42

The scale of the clean-up is just absolutely immense.

0:32:420:32:46

It's one of the biggest engineering challenges of our time.

0:32:460:32:49

They're talking 30, 40 years.

0:32:490:32:52

I've never seen anything like it.

0:32:520:32:54

Yeah. Right, well, we'll pick up the rest of that road trip

0:32:540:32:57

a little later in the show.

0:32:570:32:58

-Rory.

-Now, while Matt and Chris were off filming that,

0:32:580:33:02

I was on a Japanese mission of my own.

0:33:020:33:04

Back in Tokyo, I'd been given just one night to delve into the more

0:33:070:33:12

unusual side of Japanese car culture.

0:33:120:33:15

And I thought I'd begin with the very USUAL Daihatsu Tanto.

0:33:160:33:21

If you really want to understand Japan,

0:33:240:33:26

this is where you need to look.

0:33:260:33:28

The Kei car.

0:33:340:33:35

Because in the world's most populated city,

0:33:350:33:38

Tokyo's 38 million inhabitants have long been torn between a love

0:33:380:33:43

of cars and a lack of space.

0:33:430:33:45

And for many, these are the answer.

0:33:450:33:48

Kei cars make up about 40% of the cars on the road over here.

0:33:490:33:53

There's one. There's another one.

0:33:530:33:56

They're all Kei cars.

0:33:560:33:57

And they're all built to a set of regulations

0:33:580:34:01

that makes the Formula 1 rule book look laid-back.

0:34:010:34:05

The engines are all exactly 660 cc.

0:34:050:34:08

They're all limited to 63 horsepower

0:34:080:34:12

and they're all incredibly slow.

0:34:120:34:15

It was introduced in 1949 as an affordable post-war alternative to

0:34:170:34:22

the motorcycle. And as the Japanese population boomed,

0:34:220:34:25

the Kei car's frugal and compact formula was future-proof.

0:34:250:34:29

You see, in Tokyo, because space is so tight,

0:34:310:34:35

you can't actually buy a car unless you can prove you actually have the

0:34:350:34:39

space to park it. That's why these things are so popular.

0:34:390:34:42

The Kei car is all about sacrificing the individual for the good of the

0:34:440:34:49

many. Everything in order.

0:34:490:34:51

Button-down. To hell with creativity.

0:34:510:34:54

But here's the thing about creativity.

0:34:540:34:57

No matter how tightly you button it down, it always finds a way out.

0:34:570:35:03

And the tighter you button, the weirder it comes out.

0:35:030:35:06

Because after dark, while the rest of the city sleeps,

0:35:080:35:12

Tokyo's less conventional drivers come out to play.

0:35:120:35:16

Oh, yes!

0:35:210:35:23

Bosozoku style!

0:35:230:35:25

A small corner of automotive self-expression

0:35:270:35:30

that's all about extremes.

0:35:300:35:32

Sick!

0:35:320:35:34

I'm not going to lie - this is a little bit intimidating.

0:35:350:35:39

I don't really want to say the wrong thing.

0:35:390:35:41

These guys come with a certain reputation.

0:35:410:35:44

With its origins in gang culture,

0:35:440:35:47

Bosozoku style today takes once stock Japanese classics

0:35:470:35:51

and wildly remodels them.

0:35:510:35:53

Look at this!

0:35:530:35:55

What is this, metal?

0:35:550:35:56

That looks dangerous, man.

0:35:570:35:59

Its trademarks are flamboyant exhausts,

0:35:590:36:02

extreme flared arches and snowplough ground clearance.

0:36:020:36:06

-This yours?

-Yeah, street racer.

0:36:060:36:09

This is nice.

0:36:090:36:11

But what are they like to drive?

0:36:110:36:13

Well, after a bit of negotiation, I was given the chance to find out.

0:36:130:36:18

I can drive? You sure?

0:36:180:36:20

Arigato. Arigato, arigato.

0:36:200:36:21

Oh, my God. Come on!

0:36:210:36:23

Oh, mate!

0:36:260:36:29

-Yeah!

-Enjoy.

-Oh, I will enjoy, don't you worry.

0:36:290:36:32

This is more my style. I want one of these.

0:36:530:36:55

Bosozoku is everything a Kei car isn't -

0:37:000:37:04

anti-social and on the fringes of legality.

0:37:040:37:07

The story goes that in the '50s,

0:37:080:37:10

kamikaze pilots coming back from war kind of needed a new hobby.

0:37:100:37:15

So they took to modifying their motorcycles with crazy exhausts and

0:37:150:37:19

all kinds of ornaments, generally getting up to havoc in city centres,

0:37:190:37:23

creating high jinks.

0:37:230:37:25

Occasionally organised crime-flavoured high jinks.

0:37:250:37:29

Anyhow, the Bosozoku tuning style moved away from gang culture and

0:37:310:37:36

into cars and so many definitely law-abiding years later,

0:37:360:37:40

we end up with these.

0:37:400:37:42

Argh!

0:37:440:37:46

I'm pretty sure this is not legal.

0:37:490:37:51

If you want to show off, you couldn't do much better.

0:37:560:37:59

Except, of course, this is Tokyo.

0:38:000:38:03

Oh, hello! Lambos!

0:38:030:38:05

Oh, yes!

0:38:050:38:07

Yes!

0:38:080:38:10

Oh, yes!

0:38:100:38:13

Oh, that is nuts.

0:38:130:38:15

Oh, yes!

0:38:160:38:18

-Yeah!

-Yeah!

0:38:180:38:19

Loving your style, mate.

0:38:190:38:21

Loving your style.

0:38:210:38:23

I am completely out of my depth here.

0:38:240:38:26

Let's work, come on.

0:38:300:38:32

I'm pretty sure that's fine.

0:38:320:38:35

Wait for me, wait for me!

0:38:350:38:36

Oh, my lord!

0:38:450:38:48

Yes!

0:38:480:38:49

In Japan's underground car scene,

0:38:510:38:53

even the deepest pockets are out to make a statement.

0:38:530:38:57

For this lot, the supercar is just the start.

0:38:570:39:01

And I had to blag a go.

0:39:010:39:03

Oh, my

0:39:040:39:07

God!

0:39:070:39:08

I'll be honest, this is turning into one of the stranger nights

0:39:180:39:23

of my life.

0:39:230:39:24

Again, if you're asking why, why cover a Lambo in neon lights,

0:39:270:39:32

glitter and fake bullet holes?

0:39:320:39:34

Japan's answer is quite simply, why not?

0:39:360:39:39

The world is all about uniqueness these days.

0:39:420:39:45

You buy a brand-new mini and there are literally millions of options

0:39:450:39:49

for customisation. Union Jack roof, bonnet stripes.

0:39:490:39:52

This is the same thing.

0:39:520:39:54

It just takes it a little bit further.

0:39:540:39:55

But there's more to it than that because the people who run these

0:39:560:40:00

kaleidoscopic supercars say they have a grander mission.

0:40:000:40:03

You see, the number of under-30s with a driving licence is falling

0:40:030:40:07

every year in Japan, down by a third since the turn of the century.

0:40:070:40:11

And they reckon it's all the boring Kei cars that are the problem.

0:40:110:40:15

Make more stuff like this, they say,

0:40:150:40:18

and the kids will come flooding back to cars.

0:40:180:40:20

And, to be fair, they may have a point.

0:40:210:40:24

Yeah, go ahead - Instagram it, come on!

0:40:240:40:26

I know you want to.

0:40:270:40:28

Like them or not, you can't deny the sheer flamboyance of these cars does

0:40:300:40:35

make for a spectacular sight.

0:40:350:40:37

But the problem with neon Lambos out here is that they're just a bit...

0:40:370:40:42

A bit common. If you want something that's genuinely, utterly unique,

0:40:420:40:48

you've got to dig a little bit deeper.

0:40:480:40:50

This is the Porsche 962.

0:41:190:41:21

Three-time winner of the 24 hours of Le Mans,

0:41:230:41:26

it was one of the most dominant race cars of its day.

0:41:260:41:29

But what is really special about this 962

0:41:310:41:34

is that it isn't just a race car.

0:41:340:41:37

Here in Japan, this 962 is road legal.

0:41:370:41:42

And I'm going to drive it.

0:41:420:41:44

With my one night in Tokyo coming to an end,

0:41:530:41:56

it was time to leave the city sprawl behind

0:41:560:41:59

and head for the hills.

0:41:590:42:01

Because a car like this deserves -

0:42:020:42:05

no, demands - a proper road.

0:42:050:42:08

Listen to the noise!

0:42:160:42:19

Oh!

0:42:190:42:21

This is nuts! This is absolutely nuts.

0:42:220:42:26

I'm driving a Porsche Le Mans car on the road!

0:42:260:42:31

The engine is a twin turbo-charged flat six

0:42:330:42:37

that makes about 630 horsepower.

0:42:370:42:40

That might not sound like an awful lot in today's crazy world,

0:42:400:42:45

but you've got to remember two things.

0:42:450:42:48

First of all, this car only weighs 800kg.

0:42:480:42:52

That's about as much as air weighs.

0:42:520:42:55

And secondly,

0:42:550:42:57

you've got to remember that the traction control system

0:42:570:43:00

is this guy!

0:43:000:43:02

This is insane.

0:43:170:43:18

What a day. What a day!

0:43:230:43:26

Whoo!

0:43:280:43:30

If, like me, you've ever worried the world's roads are becoming lost

0:43:360:43:40

to beige SUVs and anonymous hatchbacks,

0:43:400:43:44

don't.

0:43:460:43:48

Come to Japan.

0:43:480:43:49

The world of cars is alive and well

0:43:490:43:52

and weirder than you could ever hope.

0:43:520:43:56

And that is worth travelling for.

0:43:580:44:01

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE

0:44:060:44:08

So jealous.

0:44:080:44:09

-Yeah.

-Wow.

0:44:090:44:11

I have to say, that did look great. A Porsche 962 on the road?

0:44:110:44:15

-It's proper bucket list stuff.

-I know. Honestly, it really was.

0:44:150:44:18

It was just the most incredible 12 hours.

0:44:180:44:20

What about the 13th hour?

0:44:200:44:22

Do you want to show what happened when you were driving the very rare,

0:44:220:44:25

very expensive Porsche back from the shoot?

0:44:250:44:28

No. No, I don't.

0:44:280:44:29

Well, we have some footage.

0:44:290:44:32

Look at this.

0:44:320:44:33

Yeah, I think something's broken in this.

0:44:390:44:42

Yeah, I've got smoke, I've got smoke.

0:44:440:44:46

APPLAUSE

0:44:510:44:53

Please don't clap that.

0:44:530:44:55

That looked significant.

0:44:550:44:57

-Yeah.

-What was wrong?

0:44:570:44:58

Well, we kind of narrowed it down to the engine region.

0:44:580:45:02

-So what did you do?

-I legged it!

0:45:030:45:06

Great, so if any of you out there fancy a broken Le Mans Porsche,

0:45:060:45:09

head to the Hakone turnpike just outside of Odawara.

0:45:090:45:12

Yeah, and bring a spanner.

0:45:120:45:14

Right, time to get back to our big Japanese road trip.

0:45:150:45:18

As you'll remember, Chris and I had been tasked with buying a couple of

0:45:180:45:21

'90s sports cars and shipping them back to the UK

0:45:210:45:25

to try and turn a profit.

0:45:250:45:26

You rejoin us the following morning when we'd been told to head to a

0:45:260:45:30

local race circuit for another challenge.

0:45:300:45:32

The racetrack we'd been sent to was buried deep in the forest.

0:45:370:45:41

And as we'd come to expect from Japan,

0:45:440:45:46

it wasn't quite what we'd expected.

0:45:470:45:51

What is this? Are we in the right place?

0:45:530:45:56

What kind of a racetrack has large statues of monkeys?

0:45:580:46:01

Is it a racetrack, or a zoo?

0:46:030:46:06

Perhaps it was a bit of both.

0:46:060:46:09

Because this was Ebisu -

0:46:090:46:11

home to the wilder animals of Japanese motorsport.

0:46:150:46:18

What is that?

0:46:210:46:23

Yes, this is drifting.

0:46:280:46:30

You know that moment when you're about to crash that seems to last

0:46:400:46:42

forever? They've taken that moment and stretched it out

0:46:420:46:45

-and turned it into a motorsport.

-What could be better?

0:46:450:46:48

Nothing.

0:46:480:46:49

Starting out as an illegal race scene

0:46:520:46:54

on Japan's touge mountain roads back in the '90s,

0:46:540:46:57

drifting has evolved into disciplines like this.

0:46:570:47:00

Known as Tsuiso, drivers run in pairs,

0:47:040:47:07

drifting as close and as fast as possible in parallel.

0:47:070:47:10

And, worryingly, it was just then that our challenge arrived.

0:47:130:47:16

Hi. Hi.

0:47:160:47:18

-A challenge.

-Thank you.

0:47:180:47:19

Thank you.

0:47:190:47:21

What have we got? What have we got?

0:47:210:47:22

Nice helmet design. "Because you've both bought rear-wheel drive Japanese sports cars,

0:47:220:47:26

"it's time for you to team up for a drift challenge against a

0:47:260:47:29

"team of Japanese aces."

0:47:290:47:31

-Those guys?

-Not those guys, those guys.

0:47:320:47:36

Well, which guys are those guys?

0:47:360:47:38

Yep, these guys.

0:47:410:47:43

Matchbox-sized Kei car pick-ups from the shallower end of the drift pool.

0:47:430:47:48

So, issued with beginners' safety goggles...

0:47:520:47:54

Looking good!

0:47:540:47:56

..and a set of super-skinny rear tyres to help us slide,

0:47:560:48:00

we headed out for some practice.

0:48:000:48:02

This is brilliant!

0:48:060:48:08

And, OK, some of us needed more practice than others.

0:48:100:48:15

It's so tricky.

0:48:160:48:19

Keep going. It's going to come. I know it is!

0:48:190:48:21

I can't see with those stupid things on.

0:48:230:48:25

Oh, there's the road.

0:48:250:48:26

That's it, Matt. Keep it going, Matt. Keep it going, Matthew.

0:48:310:48:34

That's better! That's better!

0:48:370:48:38

But getting the hang of the drift was only half the battle.

0:48:390:48:42

To compete, we'd need to do it in tandem.

0:48:440:48:47

It's so hard to stay together.

0:48:510:48:52

I lost a wheel. Lost the wheel.

0:49:040:49:06

With no time left to practise, there was only one way to make sure

0:49:070:49:10

we'd nail the art of the parallel drift.

0:49:100:49:13

Problem solved.

0:49:160:49:18

And starting at the front of the grid,

0:49:180:49:20

the aim of this challenge would be to stay ahead

0:49:200:49:23

of the Kei car drifters for two laps of sideways action.

0:49:230:49:27

Any tips?

0:49:270:49:29

Take it nice and smooth, instigate the transition positively,

0:49:290:49:32

and try and stay alive.

0:49:320:49:35

OK.

0:49:350:49:37

Three, two, one...

0:49:370:49:40

Now, in a stroke of genius,

0:49:450:49:48

lashing our cars together had turned us into a rolling road block.

0:49:480:49:52

-You've got to steer!

-I am steering!

0:49:520:49:55

So, while the other teams struggled to get past,

0:49:550:49:58

we were free to concentrate on our technique.

0:49:580:50:00

-OK, ready?

-OK.

0:50:000:50:02

Steer, steer!

0:50:020:50:04

And, unbelievably...

0:50:070:50:09

Our improvised answer to the perfect tandem drift actually worked.

0:50:110:50:15

That's what I'm talking about, baby!

0:50:200:50:22

Woohoo!

0:50:220:50:25

OK, get ready.

0:50:270:50:28

-Go!

-Steer, steer!

0:50:280:50:30

-Nice!

-Yeah, we've got it.

0:50:330:50:36

Ready, ready, ready?

0:50:360:50:39

Handbrake.

0:50:390:50:40

Against the odds, with the Kei cars still at bay,

0:50:430:50:46

we were looking good for the win.

0:50:460:50:49

Right, ready, ready, ready? Full power, full power.

0:50:490:50:51

It's going great!

0:51:000:51:02

But with just half a lap between us and victory...

0:51:020:51:05

Whoa!

0:51:070:51:09

It broke!

0:51:090:51:10

It was working so well.

0:51:220:51:24

I don't understand why it went wrong.

0:51:240:51:26

Out of the race, we handed the Kei car pick-ups a solid one-two finish.

0:51:280:51:32

But frankly, we had bigger things to worry about.

0:51:330:51:36

-My car is shagged.

-Wow.

0:51:380:51:41

Now, is it the goal to buy these for a million yen...

0:51:410:51:45

-Yeah.

-..get them back to the UK and sell them and make a profit?

0:51:450:51:49

Ooh, what do you think?

0:51:490:51:51

Well, it's often said that a racing car that's enjoyed huge success

0:51:510:51:56

like, win the Le Mans 24 hours,

0:51:560:51:58

if you leave it after the race untouched, you don't clean it,

0:51:580:52:01

-you leave all the patination and the life, it's worth more money.

-Uh-huh.

0:52:010:52:04

So, what race is this?

0:52:040:52:06

The near the weird zoo drift place...

0:52:060:52:10

-Challenge.

-Yes!

0:52:100:52:11

-That adds value.

-Yeah.

-I think that adds value.

0:52:130:52:15

Now, a busy morning "adding value" does build an appetite,

0:52:150:52:20

so we left Ebisu behind

0:52:200:52:22

and this time Matt sensibly suggested we skip

0:52:220:52:25

the service station eggs and go for one of his favourite local dishes.

0:52:250:52:29

-What's this?

-Oh, have you ever had wanko soba?

0:52:290:52:31

No, I like a couple of beers first, normally.

0:52:310:52:33

No, no, it's a Japanese delicacy.

0:52:330:52:35

Honestly, I love wanko.

0:52:350:52:38

Sit down.

0:52:380:52:40

Wanko soba?

0:52:410:52:42

Hey.

0:52:440:52:45

Sure.

0:52:460:52:49

Yeah.

0:52:490:52:50

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

0:52:500:52:51

Mmm. That's good.

0:52:530:52:55

They're quite plain, aren't they?

0:52:550:52:57

Mm-hm.

0:52:570:52:58

It's customary to keep eating - eat as many bowls as you can, you know?

0:53:020:53:06

-Is it?

-And the record is held by this little skinny Japanese girl.

0:53:060:53:09

-She ate 700 bowls.

-700 bowls?

0:53:090:53:12

-A little skinny Japanese girl.

-Well, it's not a competition, is it?

0:53:120:53:15

We'll have a couple and then we'll move on.

0:53:150:53:17

I mean, it really isn't a competition, is it?

0:53:170:53:19

ORIENTAL GONG

0:53:190:53:21

Oh, OK... I'm...

0:53:410:53:43

I'm full.

0:53:430:53:44

-It was good though, right?

-That is fantastic.

0:53:470:53:49

And... And... I know it wasn't a competition,

0:53:490:53:51

but if it was, I, you know...

0:53:510:53:53

-Yeah, you would have won.

-I would have won, yeah.

0:53:530:53:55

Thank you. Oh, look at that.

0:53:550:53:57

OK. "We forgot to mention, we only sorted the shipping for one car.

0:53:590:54:04

"The transport leaves in one hour from the airport in Enbu.

0:54:040:54:08

"Please decide between yourselves which car you're taking back to the UK."

0:54:080:54:11

Oh, well, obviously you'd take the RX-7.

0:54:110:54:13

It's a beautiful example, a special car, rotary engine, not many left.

0:54:130:54:17

But they're a dime a dozen.

0:54:170:54:18

-What do you mean a dime a dozen?

-They're all over the place.

0:54:180:54:21

-A GTT...

-You don't see anywhere.

-You do!

-I've never seen one.

0:54:210:54:23

It's the cockroach of Japanese cars.

0:54:230:54:25

-They're everywhere.

-Why would we take the RX-7?

0:54:250:54:27

-Quite right, we're taking the RX-7.

-Oh, you'll want some of that. Look at that over there.

0:54:270:54:31

Oi!

0:54:310:54:33

With only one car heading back to the UK...

0:54:350:54:37

Oh, no, no, no, no, you don't.

0:54:370:54:39

..and just an hour to reach the airport,

0:54:390:54:42

we each had our own take on how to get there first.

0:54:420:54:45

I don't know what Chris's plan is to get there, but my plan,

0:54:450:54:47

I'm going to head to the highway,

0:54:470:54:49

stay off these windy roads and then let it rip.

0:54:490:54:51

He's got a march on me, the little swine.

0:54:510:54:56

I'm going to save time. I'm going the windy route.

0:54:560:54:58

I've got an RX-7 - why wouldn't I go the windy route?

0:54:580:55:01

With our destination at Enbu just 20 miles to the north,

0:55:020:55:06

my highway route might have been slightly further,

0:55:060:55:09

but it was definitely faster.

0:55:090:55:11

The race was on.

0:55:120:55:14

Right, so I've got more power and, frankly, a better car,

0:55:160:55:19

so I should be able to carry more speed, especially since I'm taking the highway.

0:55:190:55:23

I should be able to get there quicker.

0:55:230:55:26

And I'm home free.

0:55:260:55:27

I still reckon I've got the faster car.

0:55:310:55:34

I still reckon this is the RX-7's to lose.

0:55:340:55:36

And, frankly, the odds were with me,

0:55:380:55:41

because for Matt to take advantage of his superfast highway...

0:55:410:55:44

Hi, can you open the gate?

0:55:440:55:46

Open the gate, please?

0:55:460:55:48

First, he'd have to get on it.

0:55:480:55:51

Who? Who? No, I just need you to open the gate so I can get on the highway. Highway?

0:55:510:55:55

Highway. Kado, kado.

0:55:550:55:57

No, I'm not going to Chicago.

0:55:570:56:00

The gate, the gate, the gate!

0:56:000:56:02

You need to open the gate.

0:56:020:56:03

Just open it. There must be a button.

0:56:040:56:07

Are you kidding?

0:56:070:56:09

Buddy!

0:56:090:56:10

This was a setback.

0:56:100:56:12

And annoyingly, pocket rocket Harris was flying.

0:56:120:56:17

There is so much to love about this car.

0:56:170:56:21

That rotary engine is so light,

0:56:210:56:23

it means the front of the car doesn't have too much weight so it doesn't understeer,

0:56:230:56:27

it doesn't push, it just grips and goes.

0:56:270:56:29

It is the perfect weapon in which to beat Matt LeBlanc.

0:56:300:56:34

Open the gate!

0:56:370:56:39

-No, no.

-No, no, what?

0:56:400:56:42

How do I get in?

0:56:420:56:44

SPEAKS IN JAPANESE

0:56:440:56:46

-ETC?

-Yeah.

-I have the ETC.

0:56:460:56:48

Yeah, I have it. I have it somewhere. I don't know where it is.

0:56:480:56:51

Yeah, I have it. I don't know.

0:56:510:56:54

Yeah, the ETC.

0:56:540:56:55

What's an ETC? I don't know what that means.

0:56:550:56:57

But while I was still negotiating hard with the keeper

0:56:570:57:00

of the plastic gate...

0:57:000:57:01

Come on!

0:57:010:57:03

Thankfully, Chris soon discovered that local roads means local traffic.

0:57:030:57:07

Get out of the way.

0:57:070:57:09

Come on!

0:57:090:57:10

And while he was held up...

0:57:100:57:12

Here we go. Open road, open road.

0:57:130:57:15

I had finally overcome my language barrier.

0:57:150:57:18

I have no idea what that guy was talking about but, hoo, boy,

0:57:180:57:22

was he angry.

0:57:220:57:24

Move!

0:57:260:57:28

Yes. The Skyline and I were in the hunt.

0:57:280:57:31

I love this car, I really do.

0:57:310:57:32

It's really grown on me. I've got to win this and get it back to the UK.

0:57:320:57:37

Come on!

0:57:370:57:38

With less than ten miles to go to reach the airport finish,

0:57:400:57:43

the gap to Harris was closing fast.

0:57:430:57:46

And as I left the highway behind...

0:57:460:57:48

Yes! That's what I'm talking about.

0:57:480:57:50

..it would be a straight sprint up a private road to reach the waiting

0:57:520:57:55

transport and, for one of us, victory.

0:57:550:57:59

This is GTT territory, my friend.

0:57:590:58:02

There is no way LeBlanc is going to get here before me. No way!

0:58:070:58:11

There's no way he'd beat me here.

0:58:140:58:16

No way!

0:58:160:58:17

All right, come on, come on.

0:58:240:58:27

Right, got to be getting near the top now.

0:58:270:58:30

Oh, he's there already!

0:58:350:58:38

Oh, man!

0:58:380:58:40

That sucks.

0:58:420:58:44

-How did you get here so fast?

-I had a Mazda RX-7.

0:58:450:58:48

-What took you so long?

-I got hung up at a toll booth.

0:58:480:58:51

-What's that?

-I got hung up at a tollbooth.

0:58:510:58:54

Come on, let's chase him.

0:58:560:58:58

Look at him go.

0:59:020:59:04

All right, end of the line.

0:59:090:59:11

There he goes.

0:59:140:59:16

How did you beat me?

0:59:160:59:17

I mean, how did you...

0:59:170:59:18

What is that? What are you doing?

0:59:180:59:20

It's Ichiban. Lipstick for men.

0:59:200:59:23

You need a little more on the side there.

0:59:230:59:26

You're an asshole.

0:59:290:59:31

THEY LAUGH

0:59:310:59:33

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE

0:59:340:59:36

That was mega. That was awesome.

0:59:360:59:38

Awesome, awesome.

0:59:380:59:40

That was a hell of a trip.

0:59:400:59:42

Japan, great country.

0:59:420:59:44

Weird as hell, but great.

0:59:440:59:46

You know what really blew my mind?

0:59:460:59:48

The toilets, am I right?

0:59:480:59:50

-Oh!

-Back me up.

-They were amazing.

0:59:500:59:51

Heated seat and that little probe thing that comes out and washes...

0:59:510:59:55

-Let's not use the word "probe".

-Oh, come on.

-No, no, no.

0:59:550:59:58

Let's call it a telescoping wash nozzle thing.

0:59:581:00:02

-It cleans you.

-No, no, can we get back to the point of the film here, right?

1:00:041:00:07

-OK.

-Which was to make money on a Japanese sports car.

1:00:071:00:09

Let's do the maths on this. You paid, what,

1:00:091:00:11

Seven grand at auction, right?

1:00:111:00:13

-Right.

-OK, and then there was the cost of flights.

1:00:131:00:15

-What's that, a grand?

-Little bit more.

1:00:151:00:17

-And then the cost of shipping the car?

-Yeah, don't forget fuel.

1:00:171:00:19

Then there was that night at the sake bar.

1:00:191:00:21

-That was a great night.

-That was mega.

1:00:211:00:23

So let's cut to the chase on this.

1:00:231:00:24

How much would you have to sell this car for to break even?

1:00:241:00:29

About 52 grand.

1:00:291:00:30

But... But I've had a couple of very strong nibbles, Rory.

1:00:311:00:36

-Yeah?

-And I'm hopeful.

1:00:361:00:38

What's your highest bid so far?

1:00:381:00:39

-800 quid.

-800 quid?

1:00:391:00:41

Yeah, but I'm going to squeeze a bit more out of him. It's fine.

1:00:411:00:43

It's not exactly the strongest business model, is it?

1:00:431:00:46

Now, look, look, in Chris' defence...

1:00:461:00:47

No, I've got nothing. I'm sorry, no, no.

1:00:491:00:52

OK, look, that's all we've got time for this week.

1:00:521:00:54

See you next week. Goodnight.

1:00:541:00:57

There is a Japanese flavour to this week's show, as Matt LeBlanc and Chris Harris buy second-hand sports cars at auction for a big road trip across Honshu, while Rory has one night to discover the weirdest car culture Tokyo has to offer. Out on track, Chris compares the Honda Civic Type R and Lexus LC500.