- Jeremy road tests the Porsche Cayenne Turbo.
- Richard goes to South Africa to drive the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.
- Jeremy power tests the MG XPower SV.
- Richard finds out which professor can do the best burn-out?
- What is the best British car? The boys find out.
- Star in a Reasonably Priced Car: Rory Bremner.
Review: Clarkson reviews the new Porsche Cayenne Turbo, and tests the off-road abilities in Bovington, Dorset. It is a brilliant car from a technological standpoint; equally adept both as a sports saloon and an offroading monster. Jeremy does not care, nor does he care that it guzzles petrol, has little space inside, and costs a whopping £70,000. But he can not stand it for its looks, saying it is “less attractive than a gangrenous wound, is a monkfish among cars and has the sex appeal of a camel with gingivitis.” Jeremy hates its looks so much that he leaves it and walks back to the studio. May agrees that it is so hideous that it should not be bought by anyone.
Review: Hammond reviews the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren in South Africa. He isn’t impressed, especially by the brakes, hard ride, and interior quality. Back in the Top Gear studio, Richard and Jeremy engage in a game of Top Gear Top Trumps pitting Hammond’s experience with SLR McLaren against the Porshe Carrera GT, which Jeremy drover earlier in the year. They conclude that the Porshe is more the driver’s car, but that you’ll want the Mercedes if you are a golfer as your clubs will not fit in the Porsche.
Star In A Reasonably-Priced Car: Rory Bremner reads car adverts in the voices of Nelson Mandela, Julian Clary, Prince Charles and his meeting with Murray Walker. He talks about the high attrition rate of old Alfa Romeos on classic rallies. He came second at 1:47.9.
Main review: MG XPower SV, which Jeremy finds to be beautiful and with a powerful, throaty Ford Mustang V8. It is fast on the track, but poorly made, insanely expensive, and less reliable than a TVR or any foreign rivals. Richard later mocks Jeremy when he hits his head on the interior. Did a lap of 1:28.6 in the dry, better than a Porsche 911 Turbo in the wet, but was not good enough to beat any of its price-range rivals.
Challenge: Top Gear boffin burn-out! Which professor can do the best burn-out? Richard challenges Heinz Wolff, Brian Sewell and Colin Pillinger compete to find out.
Review: Clarkson, Hammond and May set off to find the best British car. Clarkson chooses the Noble M12, Hammond takes the Morgan Plus 8, and May picks the Rover 75. Clarkson manages to drive the M12 around the track, get out, and read a book (The Very Hungry Caterpillar) before Hammond crosses the line. None of them change their mind, but the audience selects the Noble as the best.
Stig Power Laps
MG XPower SV
Star in a Reasonably Priced Car