Top Gear: Series 4, Episode 9

  • Richard tests the Mercedes-Benz SL600, Mazda MX-5, Fiat Barchetta & Toyota MR2.
  • James finds out if it’s possible to parachute into a moving car.
  • Richard & James search for the best convertible.
  • Jeremy road tests the Jaguar X-Type Estate.
  • Star in a Reasonably Priced Car: Sir Ranulph Fiennes.

Episode Guide

Main review: A roadster comparison with Hammond, starting with the Mercedes-Benz SL600. Hammond says it is far too expensive and its huge power is useless when the top is down. Three other less-expensive roadsters are driven: Mazda MX-5 vs. Fiat Barchetta vs. Toyota MR2. The Fiat is stylish and well-priced but front-wheel drive, the MR2 is fastest but too serious and too hard to drive; the MX-5 is the best all-rounder.

News: The presenters discuss at length the 10-year transport plan introduced on 20 July 2004 by Transport Secretary Alistair Darling, which introduces the idea of per-mile road toll schemes.

Review: Clarkson drives the four-wheel drive Jaguar X-Type estate. It has huge space, is good to drive, and despite its primitive 4WD system is unfettered by normal speeds in inclement weather.

Review: Hammond and May do a cabriolet comparison on Lewis and Harris, where fewer convertibles are bought per capita than anywhere else in the United Kingdom. The MINI Cooper Cabriolet is too expensive and embarrassing. The Vauxhall Tigra is very cheap and attractive as an overall package. The Mercedes-Benz SLK350 is powerful and comfortable but too expensive. The Audi S4 Cabriolet has the same problem, but Hammond loves it for its smart styling, four seats, large boot, and engine noise.

Challenge: Can you parachute into a moving car? The answer is yes after many tries. And Ben Collins (The Stig at that time) is on Top Gear as himself as the moving car driver

Star in a Reasonably Priced Car: Sir Ranulph Fiennes talks about running seven marathons on seven continents in seven days, after major heart surgery. Sets a respectable time of 1:51.

Stig Power Laps

Mercedes-Benz CL65 AMG

Star in a Reasonably Priced Car

Sir Ranulph Fiennes


Rating: 7.0/10. From 4 votes.
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