BBC Studios Presents Top Gear Season 30. Top Gear is back on BBC Brit (DStv channel 120) from Thursday 15th April at 20:00! In their fourth series at the wheel of Top Gear, Freddie Flintoff, Chris Harris and Paddy McGuinness hit the road again in a series of challenges designed to push them and their cars to the limit.
Top Gear Series highlights see the trio tackling the thorny issue of ‘mid-life crisis’ cars, heading to the Scottish Highlands on a punishing off-road adventure, celebrating and driving some of the most iconic cars from the James Bond films, and taking a nostalgic trip down memory lane as they drive their dads’ old cars. Plus reviews of the new Toyota GR Yaris, Lamborghini Sian, Ferrari Roma and more. Top Gear is back and it’s utter carnage!
Top Gear Season 30 Episode 1
TX Thursday 15 April, 20:00 on BBC BRIT (DStv channel 120)
DAD’S CAR: What’s the most memorable car in your life? The car you passed your test in? The first one you bought with your own money? Wrong and wrong. The most memorable car in your life, according to Freddie, Chris and Paddy, is your dad’s car. The one you sat in the back of as a kid.
So, to discover what memories it might dredge up, the presenters headed to the Lake District for an emotional reunion with their own dads’ cars – or at least the very closest thing the producers could lay their hands on. Cue a sepia-tinged, redolent trip down memory lane, and a celebration of the universal joy of Dads Cars. A trip including, inevitably, some proper dad motorsport – with Stig’s Dad at the wheel – and, of course, a final dash for the ferry. Because no dad’s road trip is complete without a dash for the ferry.
The Supercapacitor Supercar
There’s a new hybrid supercar out, and it comes from Lamborghini. Yes, Italy’s craziest car company has embraced electric, and, as you might expect, it’s very much gone its own way. The Sian doesn’t use batteries, but instead something called supercapacitors. Which, let’s be honest, sound much cooler than batteries. Chris Harris heads out on track with two noble aims. One, to see if he can tame the most powerful Lamborghini of all time. Two, to see if he can understand what supercapacitors actually are, or indeed do.
Top Gear Season 30 Episode 2
TX Thursday 22 April at 20:00 on BBC BRIT
HOW TO BUY A BOND CAR: There’s a new Bond film on the way, No Time To Die. The perfect opportunity, then, for a bit of practical consumer journalism: The Top Gear Guide To Buying A Bond Car On Any Budget (Including A Really Quite Enormous Budget). Assembling 007’s finest-ever cars in their very own secret Bond villain lair – OK, the hangar at the Top Gear test track – the presenters set about explaining how you can have a Bond car in your life, no matter how much you’ve got to spend. Obviously, this particular bit of practical consumer journalism ended up with Paddy in a tuxedo, Chris in a silly hat, and Freddie in a car that had recently been chain-sawed in half. As we said, practical consumer journalism.
Extreme E vs Jet-Pack Man
Extreme E is a new, battery-powered off-road race series that raises important questions about the relationship between motorsport and environmentalism. For example: is it really possible to have ‘green’ racing? And: if you’re all about saving the wilderness, is it really a good idea to drive 500bhp buggies all over it?bInteresting questions no doubt, but not quite as interesting as the question Freddie Flintoff wished to investigate. Specifically: is an Extreme E car faster to the top of a hill than… a man wearing a jet-pack?
Looking for a new car? Want something exotic and Italian? Got about 200 thousand pounds to spend? Firstly, congratulations, you officially have a nice problem to have. Secondly, fear not, because Chris and Paddy are here to help. Paddy reckons you should spend your hypothetical hard-earned on the beautiful new Ferrari Roma. Chris, meanwhile, reckons you’d better off with something called the Alfaholics GTA-R, which is a tiny Sixties Alfa Romeo painstakingly restored and upgraded (also which costs a lot more than two hundred thousand pounds, but let’s not allow a tiny detail like that to stand in the way of a good film).To see whose answer was better, the pair met up at Dunsfold for (a) a shoot-out, and (b) a bet involving trousers and the subsequent loss thereof.
Top Gear Season 30 Episode 3
TX Thursday 29 April at 20:00 on BBC BRIT
OFF-ROADERS IN SCOTLAND: After approximately a million years on sale, Land Rover has finally replaced the Defender. With… a new Defender. But is Defender 2.0 the “ultimate” off-roader on sale today?
To find out, Paddy, Chris and Freddie headed to the wild Scottish Highlands with a new Defender 90, and two of its closest rivals: the Mercedes-AMG G63, and the Ariel Nomad. The latter of which is, let’s be honest, (a) a small pile of scaffolding with no bodywork, and thus not really a Defender rival in the mind of anyone save Flintoff, and (b) utterly inappropriate for a winter expedition across the coldest corner of Britain. Obviously, deciding which of these fine contenders was the ultimate off-roader would require some serious, objective testing. Less obviously, these serious, objective tests included high-speed clay pigeon shooting, a livestock towing challenge – the livestock being ‘the presenters’, obviously – and a race to deliver a massive lightbulb to the UK’s most remote lighthouse. Because not enough Top Gear films to date have risked causing actual shipwrecks in the event of failure.
Under The Bonnet SPARKY SHOES
The Challenge: As part of the off-roaders film in Scotland, the presenters are testing the towing capabilities of their vehicles by attaching themselves to the back and being dragged along at high speed. Imagine Paddy, Freddie and Chris assuming a water-skier’s pose, holding onto a metal tow bar on the back of a 4×4 vehicle. With the Stig in the driver’s seat, they are pulled along an airport runway for approx. 1km, clinging on as their titanium boots whizz along the tarmac. The challenge was inspired by a motorbike trick performed by stunt bike rider Gary Rothwell, who acted as an advisor on the film.
Harris in a Yaris
There’s a new hatchback out. It comes from Toyota, it’s called the GR Yaris, and it costs over 30 thousand pounds. Which is a lot of money for a small Toyota. But the GR Yaris is no regular small Toyota. In fact, it’s a literal, actual, rally car for the road. To explain just how special the little Yaris is, Chris heads to the Top Gear test track with a bunch of the most exciting sports cars in history. Because he’s selfless like that.
Top Gear Season 30 Episode 4
TX Thursday 6 May at 20:00 on BBC BRIT
MIDLIFE CRISIS CARS: There’s a certain type of motor vehicle often dubbed ‘a mid-life crisis car’. You know the sort: usually two seats, often convertible, generally bought by men of a certain age going through certain… issues. But according to Freddie, Chris and Paddy, there’s no such thing as a mid-life crisis car. What there is… is a mid-life ‘opportunity’ car. A car bought by men of a certain age to make them feel good about themselves. And what, ask the presenters, is so wrong with that? In a bid to rebrand this most denigrated species of car, the presenters each bought themselves a definitely-not-at-all-tragic mid-life ‘opportunity’ for a series of challenges. One of which, inevitably, involved lycra. And jetskis.
Image Courtesy: Supplied