Most expensive Top Gear segments?

DonovanM

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I'm curious to see what you all think were some of the most expensive Top Gear segments to film. I'm talking about in terms of production costs, things like insurance, booking and travel costs, etc. not necessarily the price tag of the vehicles involved.

The most recent episode got me thinking about this, most notably during the E-type anniversary segment. As we know, the BBC is a state funded agency, so the appearances made by the British military are probably just convenient excuses for a training exercise/PR stint, such as the Typhoon fighter that raced the Bugatti, the Apache helicopter that tried to catch the Lotus, the aircraft carrier early in the remade series, and in our most recent episode the Royal Navy jumpers and Multicam-clad Royal Marine commandos (?) who rappelled down the cliff to mount the flag. The band also looked like a state function, as they seemed kind of familiar (but I don't really pay attention to British governmental proceedings to say for sure).

So, even though the anniversary segment was much more showy and extravagant than the Marauder's South African segment, I think the latter was probably the more expensive of the two. Not only did they have to travel to South Africa, but they blew up a Hummer H3, demolished two cars and a few walls (knowing Joburg, not sure anyone cares about the walls), and may or may not have had to specify in their insurance contract that they were planning on trying to blow up a $500,000 truck. But, in the E-type segment, they may or may not have had to pay for the warplanes or the balloon.

Thoughts?
 

narf

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My guess is The Polar Race.



The Marauder segment probably was not very expensive. Used Hummer, meh. Two banger cars to drive over, meh. An explosives test, meh - potentially a planned demo by the manufacturer, filmed by the BBC at very small cost.
 
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Straat

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The Marauder segment probably was not very expensive. Used Hummer, meh. Two banger cars to drive over, meh. An explosives test, meh - potentially a planned demo by the manufacturer, filmed by the BBC at very small cost.
mhm i agree. it seems likely that the manufacturer of the car paid for most of it. after all it's going be difficult to sell a car like that without having some big pr stunts.
 

biggie

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That trip to CA/NV when they had to buy the Challenger probably wasn't too cheap.
 

Amie8

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The most recent episode got me thinking about this, most notably during the E-type anniversary segment. As we know, the BBC is a state funded agency, so the appearances made by the British military are probably just convenient excuses for a training exercise/PR stint, such as the Typhoon fighter that raced the Bugatti, the Apache helicopter that tried to catch the Lotus, the aircraft carrier early in the remade series, and in our most recent episode the Royal Navy jumpers and Multicam-clad Royal Marine commandos (?) who rappelled down the cliff to mount the flag. The band also looked like a state function, as they seemed kind of familiar (but I don't really pay attention to British governmental proceedings to say for sure).
The British forces are right media tarts. They'll never say no to an opportunity to show off on TV. As you said, I think it it's good PR.
 

Amie8

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Good point, but I'm talking production costs here, not medical bills :)()

I don't know if the Challenger counts, because it was out of Hammond's own pocket.
In a roundabout way, the Vampire dragster made them money, in that it raised the profile of the show and increased the audience, which in turn increased the budget etc etc until here we are today.

And they re-sold the Challenger, so they got some of that money back.
 
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I don't know if the Challenger counts, because it was out of Hammond's own pocket.
What makes you think that Hamster paid for it?

As for the most expensive segments, the specials must cost a lot of money as well. For instance, for the polar special they had to fly the trucks in, have them built, have crews(those mechanics?) for the entire time, they went to Austria, insurance, etc. I can't imagine that being very cheap.
 

Dracwolley

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In the BMW X6 review in [14x07], Jezza took himself and the car to Australia, Spain, Switzerland, and Hong Kong. He also went to Barbados just at the end but didn't have the X6 with him. Probably far from the most expensive, but perhaps up there nonetheless.
 

Spectre

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In the BMW X6 review in [14x07], Jezza took himself and the car to Australia, Spain, Switzerland, and Hong Kong. He also went to Barbados just at the end but didn't have the X6 with him. Probably far from the most expensive, but perhaps up there nonetheless.

It isn't the same X6 in all those locations. Look at the license plates.
 

The Spie

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In terms of up-front expense, what about the Reliant Robin Space Shuttle? I'd imagine that was incredibly expensive to pull off.
 

ahpadt

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JC said the Senna segment was really expensive to make. I can't remember why tho. :p
 

DonovanM

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What makes you think that Hamster paid for it?

As for the most expensive segments, the specials must cost a lot of money as well. For instance, for the polar special they had to fly the trucks in, have them built, have crews(those mechanics?) for the entire time, they went to Austria, insurance, etc. I can't imagine that being very cheap.
I thought when he said "I bought it" in the episode, it meant he wanted one and he bought it for himself, but I guess the show may have bought it and he just did the purchasing.
 

e-type

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In terms of up-front expense, what about the Reliant Robin Space Shuttle? I'd imagine that was incredibly expensive to pull off.
Definitely the Space Shuttle Robin.
One of the Rocketeers said that it is the largest & most powerful non commercial rocket launched in Europe.

so long ,

e-type
 
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Dracwolley

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It isn't the same X6 in all those locations. Look at the license plates.
ooh, good catch. Admittedly I'm not the most observant person to walk the face of this earth... or the most clever.
And on second thought, if the races count as a "segment" I have a feeling that the XK120 vs Black Shadow vs steam train would probably win out.
 

jack_christie

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Obviously they are not spending enough money, as the head of the editor of thedailyfail has yet to explode!
 

The Spie

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If the races count as a "segment" I have a feeling that the XK120 vs Black Shadow vs steam train would probably win out.
Maybe not. This was a pre-scheduled special run for Tornado for a group of steam locomotive enthusiasts (albeit a "surprise" one). It would depend on the insurance costs for the Vincent and the Jag. If you go on those terms, I think the Truffle Race would have been more expensive (insurance for the Veyron, private plane rental costs, Eurostar tickets, etc.), possibly beaten by London to Oslo (insurance for the Merc, the plane tickets to Newcastle, the ferry tickets, and the speedboat rental). In fact, if travel costs were included, the Japan race might have topped them all, although they amortized the costs by shooting other segments while they were there.
 
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