Top Gear (series 20)

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Top Gear (series 20)
Top Gear Series 20 Promo 2013.jpg
Promotional poster
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of episodes 6
Release
Original network BBC Two
Original release 30 June (2013-06-30) – 4 August 2013 (2013-08-04)
Series chronology
← Previous
Series 19
Next →
Series 21
List of Top Gear episodes

The twentieth series of Top Gear aired during 2013 on BBC Two and consisted of six episodes, beginning on 30 June and concluding on 4 August.[1][2] This series saw the Vauxhall Astra Tech Line replace the Kia Cee'd as the show's reasonably priced car.

Episodes[edit]

Total No. Title Review Features/Challenges Guest Original air date UK viewers
(million)[3]
179 1 Series 20, Episode 1 Renaultsport Clio 200Peugeot 208 GTiFord Fiesta STVauxhall Astra Tech Line AC45 Racing Yacht vs Toyota Corolla • Introduction of the new Reasonably Priced Car: Vauxhall Astra Charles DanceWarwick DavisRachel RileyJoss StoneDavid HayeJimmy CarrMike RutherfordBrian Johnson 30 June 2013 (2013-06-30) 5.55
Clarkson travels to New Zealand to see if a Toyota Corolla can get from the northern tip of the Coromandel Peninsula to the northern tip of the North Island faster than the America's Cup-winning AC45 sailing boat, crewed by May, Olympic gold medallist Sir Ben Ainslie and a number of members from Oracle Team USA. Meanwhile, Hammond reviews three hot hatchbacks on the track - the Peugeot 208 GTi, the Renaultsport Clio 200, and the Ford Fiesta ST - to see which is the best to drive. Finally, the Kia Cee'd has been retired, and in its place is a Vauxhall Astra Tech Line, leading Hammond and Clarkson to hosting a party and inviting celebrities to join it and see if they can get a fast time in the Astra...
180 2 Series 20, Episode 2 Ferrari F12 BerlinettaBAC Mono Best taxi • Tribute to BBC Television Centre Ron Howard 7 July 2013 (2013-07-07) 5.31
Hammond once again sees if motorsport and a handful of touring car drivers can help solve the problem of which taxi in the world is the best. The contenders for this "test" are: the Hackney carriage from Britain, a Volkswagen Beetle taxi from Mexico, the Ford Crown Victoria yellow cab from America, a Hindustan Ambassador taxi from India, a Mercedes-Benz E-Class taxi from Germany, a Toyota Hiace taxi from South Africa, and a Lincoln Town Car stretch limo-taxi from Russia. Meanwhile, Clarkson sees how good the BAC Mono is on public roads and assesses the practicality of the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta as an everyday car, May pays tribute to the closed down BBC Television Centre by staging a race within the building between a duo of parkour runners and motorcycle champion Dougie Lampkin, and the director of Rush, Ron Howard, talks about the background of his film before he finds out how fast he was in the reasonably priced car...
181 3 Series 20, Episode 3 None Spanish road trip in "budget" convertibles: McLaren MP4-12C SpiderAudi R8 V10 SpyderFerrari 458 Spider Benedict Cumberbatch 14 July 2013 (2013-07-14) 4.83

The trio head for Spain for a road trip, to see which of the new "budget convertibles" is the best - Clarkson reckons it's the McLaren MP4-12C Spider, Hammond believes it's the Ferrari 458 Spider, and May attempts to show it's the Audi R8 V10 Spyder. On their road trip across the country, the trio see how inconspicuous their cars can be when driving through the marina area of Puerto Banús, conduct a noise test near some abandoned, newly built flats, drive up a curving road in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, use the runway of the disused Ciudad Real Central Airport for a top speed test and a "start with the top down and finish with the top up" drag race, before squatting in an unoccupied house to discuss their cars. To end the trip, the trio convert the streets of a huge abandoned housing project in Madrid into a street circuit of their own design, and see if they can beat a benchmark time set by The Stig in a Jaguar XKR-S convertible. Elsewhere, Benedict Cumberbatch talks about his performance in the BBC's Sherlock before seeing how he fared in the new reasonably priced car...

Note: An economy test for the 'Spain "Budget Convertible" Road Trip' film was mentioned in the show, but not shown in the episode.
182 4 Series 20, Episode 4 Mercedes SLS AMG Black SeriesMercedes SLS AMG Electric Drive Ford Transit hovervan Hugh Jackman 21 July 2013 (2013-07-21) 5.36
The boys decide to create a makeshift hovercraft out of a Ford Transit van, to see if a vehicle could be made to adapt to flooding. After their initial design sinks, the presenters redesign it and put their finished creation, the "Hovervan MK II", through the challenge of travelling along the River Avon in Warwickshie, getting it from Stratford-upon-Avon to Tewkesbury, with their ambitious idea causing chaos along the way. Elsewhere, Clarkson compares the petrol-powered Mercedes SLS AMG Black Series against the electric-powered Mercedes SLS AMG Electric Drive, and actor Hugh Jackman talks about his film The Wolverine and an embarrassing experience in Japan, while seeing how he fared in the reasonably priced car...
183 5 Series 20, Episode 5 Porsche 911 Carrera SLamborghini Aventador RoadsterLamborghini Sesto Elemento Best crossovers for caravanners Steven Tyler 28 July 2013 (2013-07-28) 5.29
Clarkson and May find themselves forced by the producers to review different CUVs to find one that would be best for a caravanner, whereupon they put them through some "pointless" tests, before seeing who can reach a caravan site first while towing a caravan with the CUV they picked, with the loser forced to spend the night at the site within their caravan. Meanwhile, Hammond tests out the new Lamborghini Aventador Roadster and the Lamborghini Sesto Elemento around the Imola racetrack in Italy, May takes a look at the new Porsche 911 Carrera S and looks at a 911 tribute car built by Californian tuner Singer, and Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler takes his turn to drive fast in the Astra...
184 6 Series 20, Episode 6 Jaguar F-TypeNew RoutemasterRange Rover Sport Tribute to British automobile manufacturing Mark Webber 4 August 2013 (2013-08-04) 5.49

With the First Generation Range Rover Sport discontinued, Hammond tests out the Second Generation Range Rover Sport to see if it's worthy to bear the "Sport" name, while May sees if the New Routemaster bus can be as good to use as a car by driving one around Somerset to weigh the pros and cons of owning one, Clarkson takes a look at the Jaguar F-Type, and F1 Driver Mark Webber talks about England's win in the 2013 Ashes series, two moments in racing when he flipped his car, and his departure from F1 racing, before seeing how fast he is this time in the Liana. For a series finale, the boys end the show by finding out just how much of a contribution Britain has made to motoring, and discovering how many car plants operate in the country. They see the immense work done by Rolls-Royce, the many cars and parts that the country has made, how much it has contributed to motor research and motorsport, the number of F1 teams that reside in the country, and how many nations in the world use British-made heavy equipment it makes for military and commercial use, before inviting the many manufacturers of motorised vehicles in Britain to bring what they make to a special meet on the The Mall in London...

Note: In a similar vein to the ending of the final episode of Series 13, the credits roll right after the end of the final film after Jeremy says "Goodnight", with the collection of motorised vehicles on the Mall being shown in the background and passed by a parade of Queen's Life Guard. The music that plays for the credits is a combination of Elgar's "Nimrod" and "Pomp and Circumstance" (aka "Land of Hope and Glory").

References[edit]

  1. ^ Eames, Tom (2013-07-01). "'Top Gear' returns for new series with over 4.7m on BBC Two". Digital Spy. Retrieved 2013-07-02. 
  2. ^ "Top Gear, BBC Two, review". Daily Telegraph. 30 June 2013. Retrieved 28 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "Weekly Top 10 Programmes". Broadcasters' Audience Research Board.