Top Gear finally breaks free from Jeremy Clarkson with Tesla film

Rory Reid’s piece on Tesla’s revolutionary electric car in episode four shows the BBC2 programme is at least trying to head in a new direction

“This car might just be on the cusp of changing everything.”


Matt LeBlanc’s Top Gear intro last night didn’t just herald a brave new world in electric cars. It also suggested that the new show had finally turned a corner.

Chris Evans has been accused of simply trying to copy what Jeremy Clarkson did first and best. But last night at least hinted that the show is trying to put some distance between it and old Top Gear, thanks to some smart handling from occasional presenter Rory Reid.
Reid was in New York City to drive new electric car the Tesla Model X.

Now, both electric in general and Tesla in particular have been dirty words round Dunsfold Aerodrome for years, ever since Clarkson eviscerated the company’s Roadster sports car in a film in 2008.

Back then Clarkson, shock horror, actually enjoyed his time in the electric car – until he realised how much it cost and how quickly it would run out of charge. “What we have here is an astonishing technical achievement: the first electric car that you might actually want to buy,” he said. “It’s just a shame that in the real world, it doesn’t seem to work.”

Tesla were so angry with the film that they attempted to sue Top Gear, but their appeal case was eventually dismissed by the court of appeal in 2013.

Fast forward to Clarkson-free Top Gear 2016 and Tesla were back with their new car, the Model X, which it is claimed will do 250 miles and charge in as little as 30 minutes.

Rory Reid was completely won over by the new motor and its ‘Ludicrous Mode’, which apparently turns it from family SUV into a drag racer that’s more than a match for even the biggest gas guzzlers.

“Everything changes right now,” Rory said pointedly. “The Model X pushes the reset button.”

Read more: Radio Times

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