The Grand Tour: A Scandi Flick is here after months of waiting and rumours, the latest episode of the show is now released to be watched on Prime Video. Filming in Norway, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May explore the world of rally cars after filming together at the beginning of 2022.
So, here’s what you need to know:
In the first episode of season 5 and their first post-pandemic road trip, Jeremy, Richard and James head for the icy wastes of the Scandinavian Arctic Circle. At the wheel of their three favourite rally cars the boys embark on a catastrophe-filled adventure that takes in Cold War submarine bases – frozen lake racetracks, crashes and ski resort chaos as they drag their homemade houses from the coast of Norway to the Russian Border.
Where Does The Norway Special Begin?
The first hint that The Grand Tour was filming came from Jeremy Clarkson’s Instagram account as he posted a video from Norway.
Making a football joke (that I’d happily let someone explain to me in the comments), he didn’t hint at any filming. But another post from the same location gave us plenty of information.
This photo introduced us to two of the cars that will feature in the episode, as well as the location.
Where Was The Norway Special Filmed?
The photo above was shot from the Henningsvaer Football Stadium on Norway near the village of Henningsvaer. This village sits on a small fishing island which has a population of only 500 people. But while it’s small, thousands of tourists visit each year because of its incredible views and, of course, the football pitch.
This pitch is one of the most recognisable in the world, but the area boasts several other enticing places such as a caviar factory turned art museum, and a coast that’s steeped in history.
The mountain range is the Festvågtind mountains, which tower 541 metres into the sky. People enjoy hiking the 1.5km trail, but unfortunately, cars aren’t able to get up there… as far as we know.
As we’ve seen from the trailer, they later visit a ski resort and an ice track over a frozen lake.
What Are The Cars?
The trailer gives us plenty to chew on, including the run-up to James May’s huge crash. But for us gearheads, we now know what cars they’re driving in the show, and who’s driving them.
Obviously, hence the name, the episode will likely revolve around the world of rally racing, and each of these three cars have a strong tie to, and history in the sport.
Let’s dig in.
Jeremy Clarkson in the Audi RS4 B7
Jeremy had already revealed that he’d bought an Audi RS4 for the show many, many months ago, but before seeing behind the scenes photos of the filming of this episode, we didn’t know it would be for this.
Obviously, the connection to rally here is the Quattro term that Audi now uses for its all-wheel drive system. But let’s explore this car a little further.
It was released in 2005 by Audi, and while the look of the car didn’t blow people away, the 4.2-litre V8 engine did with direct fuel injection and maximum revs of a shrieking 8500rpm. It produced 414 horsepower, with these horses being delivered to all four wheels. There was only one gearbox available, but surprisingly it was a manual with six speeds and, once you pressed the sport button, the throttle response would make this delicious powertrain even more exciting and bypass valves would make it sound as good as it went.
The exterior still felt very sedate, but now offered wider arches over the standard A4 as well as aluminium front wings and bonnet. And a bit later on, the RS4 badge was placed onto the wagon version, too.
As you can see form the trailer, Jeremy’s RS4 eventually gets wrapped in Quattro colours, fitted with Cibbies at the front, and somehow gets completely frozen over, resulting in Jeremy setting it on fire. Poor thing.
Richard Hammond in the Subaru Impreza WRX
We first saw the Subaru WRX in an Instagram post by Jeremy Clarkson, but it’s confirmed that it’s being driven by Richard Hammond who has driven one of these cars before in the Africa special of Top Gear.
These cars are pure rally inspired and burble as much as a cat trapped in a corner thanks to its Boxer engine. Many Subaru fans weren’t completely taken with the looks of the ‘Blobeye’ Impreza, but since its release it has become motoring legend thanks to its connection to rally and its insane performance.
Its engine is a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder Boxer engine with help from a single turbo. It’s low on weight and has a low centre of gravity, and gives it the car its iconic sound as well as 261 horsepower. It’s not quite as potent as Jeremy’s RS4, but with its trick all-wheel drive system and a bit of talent behind the wheel, it could well keep up with it in the corners.
In this episode it’s been given the Martini colours, but we can see later on that the ‘I’ at the end of ‘Martini’ has been coloured in.
James May’s Mitsubishi Evo 8
The car of the hour, this Mitsubishi Evo 8 driven by James May has had quite a life according to reports. It was crashed by the presenter at a high speed, so we’re not sure if it makes it to the end of the episode. It’s also the only car that doesn’t undergo any visual modification during the episode.
The Evo 8 was launched in 2003 in Japan and saw immediate success thanks to its potent turbocharged 4G63 4-cylinder engine. This produced 289 lb ft and 276 horsepower, but its excellent all-wheel drive system pushed its performance high enough to battle with supercars of that era.
Its chassis was stiffer than the outgoing Evo7, and the car was treated like it was going to hit a rally stage at any moment with the chassis being spot welded, suspension mounts upgraded, and the suspension itself having an improved MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension setup.
The new bodywork also allowed for better cooling and higher performance aerodynamics.
James crashed this at such a high speed, I’d be surprised if this car isn’t written off during the show, which would be very sad.
It also gets submerged in water, so…
What Happened Along The Way?
James May Crashed
The news was leaked of James May’s crash. The host was travelling at 75 mph when he crashed into a wall. He was rushed to hospital for tests including a brain scan. Lucky for May, it has been reported that he was only left with a broken rib after the scary collision.
It is believed that May had the crash and then carried on to film James May: Our Man In Italy, so thankfully he was alright to continue with his travel show.
The former Top Gear host has taken to his Twitter to acknowledge the reports. There has been a huge amount of support spread for May over social media since the news was announced. He said in his post:
“Thank you for all your kind comments and funny jokes re my crash, but it was a while back, not that bad, and I’m perfectly OK. Apologies to Evo fans for binning the VIII.”
May was joined by co-hosts Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond for the latest special of The Grand Tour. The trio were spotted travelling around Norway in three rally cars. Clarkson in an Audi RS4 B7, Hammond in a Subaru Impreza WRX and May in the Mitsubishi Lancer EVO VIII, which is what he crashed in.
James May On His Crash
“It was a strange lapse of character on my part. I don’t know what I was thinking. I was trying to win, but I don’t normally care about that either. Maybe it was too much reindeer meat. Or air pressure.
“But it’s still going to be mainly Richard Hammond. When I have a crash, I destroy a car that’s worth £15,000.
“When Hammond has a crash he writes off a £1million prototype. That’s the difference — I know not to overdo it.
“I must have left braking a fraction too late. As soon as I knew I needed to stop, I realised I wasn’t going to do it.
“I think you can see from the footage that I should try to hit (the wall) sideways and not hit any people or cameras on tripods. I knew I’d f***ed it up.”
Jeremy Clarkson On James May’s Crash
“It was a massive accident. You know when Hammond has an accident, he keeps going after the accident has begun.
“And this is what people need to remember with accidents: you can roll down a road upside down and on fire for as long as you like, and it’s very unlikely you’ll get hurt.
“What hurts you is coming to a sudden stop. And that’s what happened to James.
“Richard, when he went upside down, didn’t come to a sudden stop. That’s why he’s still here today.
“I’m not entirely certain how fast James hit that rock face, but I’m going to say 40 miles an hour. And from 40 miles an hour to a dead stop is more dangerous than rolling down a hill.
“I was standing right next to him when he crashed. I mean, 10 feet away. And I couldn’t believe how fast he was going.”
Richard Hammond on James May’s Crash
“It is interesting that James is taking up the crashing, because when he joined Top Gear I was always wearing really vibrant loud shirts.
“And then James joined and did the same and I thought, ‘Well, we can’t both do that.’ So I stopped. I just wore ordinary shirts.
“And then he’s recently grown a little goatee.
“And now he’s taken the only thing I had left, which was crashing.
“It’s very flattering that he would consider that level of impersonation, but I’ll let him have that.
“I might keep my little beard, even though he’s now got one. He can have the crashing.”
Executive producer Andy Wilman on James May’s Crash
“Jeremy and James both raced down to the scene of the crash as soon as it happened. When they saw the wreckage on fire they thought Richard was dead. It was really bad.
“They were staggered he had got out of it alive, because there was just nothing left. Everyone is so relieved. If Richard had been a few seconds slower getting out, he would have been incinerated.”
Jeremy Clarkson On James May’s Second Crash
“In the latest episode of The Grand Tour there’s a big and alarming crash.
“There’s always a big and alarming crash in The Grand Tour of course, but this one was different because the person who was gingerly lifted from the wreckage by paramedics and carefully driven to hospital in the back of an ambulance was not Richard Hammond. It was the slowest driver in the history of motoring – James May.”
“Having expressed his displeasure at being left in the field, so to speak, he crashed again. This time not into a cliff face but through the ice and into a frozen lake.
“It’s strange, and it’s something the three of us talk about quite a lot. How, when we are travelling individually or with our families, do we get from A to B without incident – but as soon as we are all together, all hell breaks loose and there are fires and smashed ribs and headlines in the Daily Mail?”
The rest of the trip
The cast were lucky enough to see the Northern Lights.
“He crashed the Evo while they were in Tromsø… I did not ask were he was,” a fan told The Grand Tour Reddit page.
Is There A Release Date For This New Episode?
Yes, the release date 16th September as confirmed in the trailer. It is now available to watch on Prime Video.
Will There Be More Episodes?
Yes, Richard Hammond has confirmed that the trio is filming yet another episode outside of the UK:
Richard Hammond (@RichardHammond) on filming another Grand Tour episode:
— Grand Tour Nation (@GrandTourNation) May 3, 2022
“We’ve already filmed one – we’re not long back from that,” he said referencing the Arctic Circle special.
“We’re ready to go off and do another, and they are huge missions to go and do,” he said.
“Lockdown was a bit tricky for that, but I think the great thing is I’ve managed to keep busy with other stuff, and we’ll continue to do that.
“The joy for me 30 odd years into a broadcasting career, I’m able to do shows at all ends of the spectrum whether being massively costly, complicated, big ones or smaller, quicker, more light and nimble. So they’re all great fun to make.
“I’ve been lucky enough to sort of cherry pick and do the shows I really want to do. So you’ll never see me there doing something I’m not really engaged in. They’re all things I want to make.”
We’re very excited to see what comes from The Grand Tour over the next year or so. And as we find out more, we’ll of course keep you updated on GTN.
Frequently Asked Questions
Has The Grand Tour ended?
No. The Grand Tour has changed its format to special-only episodes. Since this change, there have only been two episodes released per year, and this trend is looking to continue.
When will the next episode of The Grand Tour be released?
The next Grand Tour episode set in Europe doesn’t yet have a release date. The Grand Tour A Scandi Flick, is available to watch now on Prime Video.
What cars did they drive in Norway?
Jeremy Clarkson drove an Audi RS4 B7, Richard Hammond drove a Subaru Impreza WRX, and James May drove a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo XIII.