The Grand Tour is filming a Cheap Car Challenge in China

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Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, James May and the rest of the Grand Tour team have been spotted filming in China – in what looks to be the return of a proper Cheap Car Challenge.

James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson at the DRIVETRIBE launch event

After holding a press conference in the southwestern Chinese city of Chongqing for the local launch of DRIVETRIBE, the boys were later spotted filming with three used luxury cars in what promises to be a road trip across China.

Clarkson’s BMW 7-Series, followed by Hammond’s Cadillac STS

Hammond was seen driving a Cadillac STS, Clarkson in a BMW E38 7-Series, and May was behind the wheel of a Mercedes W140 S-Class – which coincidentally are all long-wheelbase luxury sedans that are ever so popular in China.

A look at James May’s Mercedes W140 S-Class

Interestingly, the cars were pictured on German license plates and they received temporary Chinese license plates from Chongqing city authorities, which leads us to believe that they were shipped to China specifically for the filming of this segment.

Clarkson testing the Made In China Hongqi L5

Chongqing is regarded by many as the Detroit of China, and sources suggest that the boys will be filming a piece investigating the industrial development of the city’s car industry. They’ll be testing the Hongqi L5 Limousine, which Jeremy said he was looking forward to testing.

The large sedans were threaded carefully through the busy streets of Chongqing

The Grand Tour will be filming in the Chongqing Central Business District from July 22 – 24, and they’ll be visiting Anshun and Liupanshui in Guizhou province in the near future. A source said that they’ll be in China filming for an entire month, although this claim has not yet been verified.

James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson at the DRIVETRIBE launch event

When asked why The Grand Tour chose to film in Chongqing (and not typical locations like Beijing, Shanghai or Hong Kong) Clarkson said: “Initially we wanted to film something about big infrastructure projects in China, but we went to the pub and forgot about that.”

It isn’t known at this stage when The Grand Tour Series 3 will kick off, but a November / December 2018 start is a safe bet. We can’t wait!

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