Challenges How hard could it be? Top Gear Series 8

Top Gear: Series 8, Episode 7

  • Richard and James test the Ford S-Max 2.5L 200 PS, Mercedes-Benz B200 Turbo & Vauxhall Zafira VXR.
  • Jeremy power tests the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder.
  • James races a Peugeot 207 against two parkour masters in Liverpool.
  • The boys attempt to build a Caterham Seven faster than the Stig can drive to Scotland.
  • Star in a Reasonably Priced Car: Steve Coogan.

Episode Guide

Watch this episode on Amazon Instant Video

Review: Hammond and May test three people carriers: the Ford S-MAX, the Mercedes-Benz B-Class, and the Vauxhall Zafira VXR. The Mercedes-Benz is the quickest on a track, but it is hopelessly expensive and too small. The Vauxhall is large enough and well-priced, but it is hard to use. Though underwhelmed by its performance on the track, the Top Gear team all agree that the Ford is the best buy, with the most practicality, the best styling, and the most drivability.

The News: MG is back, sort of. Richard reveals he has bought a Land Rover Defender and has had a misadventure with the container of touch-up paint that was included in the deal. Jeremy reveals that he went to an air show in Gloucestershire in his Ford GT and had to leave it there due to engine problems. New cars include the Honda Civic Type-R (which they are excited about), the Land Rover Freelander (which they are also excited about), and Chrysler Sebring (of which they are certain it will be rubbish). Hammond reminds viewers to participate in the Top Gear Motoring Survey. Clarkson refuses to apologise to caravan owners after Top Gear received 2 complaints regarding comments about Muslims, 3 complaints about taking a man who looks like Jesus out of the audience, and 150 complaints following the previous week’s caravan abuse.

Review: Clarkson reviews the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder. He spends the bulk of the review expressing his unbridled enthusiasm for the car. Having bought one himself, he comments that it is not the best driver’s car in the world, but it is something that could be used every day. He sums up his review by stating, “It has the most important characteristic that I look for in a car – it’s a laugh! … I think it’s absolutely tremendous!” The Stig set a lap time of 1:25.7.

Star In A Reasonably Priced Car: Steve Coogan talks about being in a hot tub between Jackie Chan and Arnold Schwarzenegger. He also mentions a Saxondale episode involving a Clarkson-like character. He sets a time of 1:50.9 in the Lacetti and becomes the first person to drive under the condition of ‘Hot’ as The Stig said that the heat had done something either to Coogan himself or the car or the Track. Coogan was visibly disappointed when he learned that Rob Brydon (a comedy partner of his) did it faster in the less powerful Suzuki Liana.

Challenge: James May races two traceurs (masters of Parkour which involves running and leaping across/off buildings) across Liverpool in a Peugeot 207 1.6L Diesel, from the edge of the city to the Liver Building. He, naturally, gets lost and loses. As for the car, he started off by praising it, but soon discovered that it was too big, too heavy, too underpowered, and too expensive for what you get. Or, as James puts it, ”It’s rubbish!”

Challenge: Clarkson, Hammond, and May team up to race against The Stig. The trio must build a Caterham Seven kit car from scratch in a pit garage at the Knockhill Racing Circuit in Scotland, while The Stig drives the same model up from Caterham’s base in Caterham, Surrey. After a lot of tension while building the car between Clarkson and May and a series of mishaps, the team looks to be losing, but they win when The Stig is stopped for speeding. After the challenge, Clarkson later said that “James, I would rather staple my ears to a horse”, when May said that building a car is a great experience.

Some say…

“Some say that on really warm days he sheds his skin like a snake, and for some reason he’s allergic to the Dutch. All we know is he’s called the Stig.”

Stig Power Laps

Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder

Star in a Reasonably Priced Car

Steve Coogan
1:50.90 (hot)


Rating: 8.3/10. From 8 votes.
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1 comment

hjg December 21, 2014 at 2:39 am

Segment 4 doesn’t work. FYI.


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