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The Grand Tour: What We Know So Far

The Grand Tour trio finally released the air date for their streaming show on Amazon Prime, and holy crap is it still a long time from now?!

The November 18 premier date is a Friday, which won’t coincide with any important programming given that it’s the least productive day of the week. However, we did find out that the show won’t come out in the fashion we’ve come to expect with the likes of other streaming services like Netflix.

With that said, here are 9 things that we know about The Grand Tour so far:

1. No Binge Watching

Just like Amazon’s other releases, an episode of The Grand Tour show will air every Friday for 12 weeks, with the last episode airing on February 3rd, 2017. Speaking at the Edinburgh International Television Festival, The Grand Tour’s and ex Top Gear’s producer Andy Wilman has lobbied Amazon to not release the episodes in one fell swoop, and instead to go with the traditional Top Gear weekly format.

2. Three Years worth of 4K footage, foul language, and a 70 minute episode?!

The trio’s current contract binds them with Amazon Prime for 36 total episodes, 12 per year, which is great for Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May fans as there will be a lot of content to enjoy for a relatively long time.

The launch episode on November 18th will be the odd one out as it’s going to be 70 minutes long! Presumably, there’s no strict timeline to stick to when you’re an online streaming program, so we think Amazon has given the Boys a bit more freedom in what they can pack into their show. However, expect the rest of the lineup to be in 60 minute sessions.

You can also expect the trio to be a bit more colorful with their language as Amazon only hired the W. Chump & Sons and not the BBC censorship crew.

3. Matt Damon and Charlize Theron

The Sun has reported that Matt Damon and Charlize Theron will be among the A-lister guests that will appear on the streaming show. It’s unclear when they’ll make an appearance within the 12 episodes, and frankly we don’t care that much. However, this must be a big burn on the BBC and Top Gear as they were unable to lure major stars for their series 23 reboot of the once highest rated automotive television program.

4. Pre-recorded sessions are 90% finished. Tent sessions still in progress.

As you might already know The Grand Tour will not follow the traditional Top Gear studio format and instead go with a live show in a big ass tent. Their first live tent session is already in the bag when they visited Johannesburg, South Africa. According to The Guardian, the first episode of The Grand Tour on November 18th will feature the California tent session, which will be recorded later this month.

the grand tour tent

All of the pre-recorded clips, like the super glossy and highly vignetted production we’ve come to expect from Top Gear is already 90% finished, according to Andy Wilman.

Some of the things you can look forward to in the films: Jeremy Clarkson driving through the set of Game of Thrones.

5. No “Stig” and no “Star In A Reasonably Priced Car,” but do you care?

Those are all Top Gear’s and BBC’s intellectual property, and based on how things abruptly ended between Jeremy Clarkson and the BBC executives, you won’t see those comedic shticks repeated on The Grand Tour. Wilman has also shared some of the things they won’t be able to say in fear of the BBC suing them, like saying “This scenery is beautiful.”The grand tour sued

6. Jeremy Clarkson almost died… Maybe…

We’re pretty sure Amazon Prime is trying to kill Clarkson, Hammond, and May. Back in April 2016, when the show was still called #TheStillVeryMuchUntitledClarksonHammondMayAmazonPrimeShowComingAutumn2016, Jeremy Clarkson unveiled on Twitter that he was “doing the most dangerous stunt I’ve ever attempted. This may well be a goodbye.”

Whether he was being his hyperbolic self or being serious, that tweet was followed up the next day with a bloodied and tarnished face.

Clarkson tweet

7. The Grand Tour has a budget of £160 million

We’re not sure how many millions the trio is raking in, but the high production value and 4K content puts a very high price tag to the entire Grand Tour operation. Apparently this was enough money to make Netflix walk away from a potential deal. According to a Netflix executive, Reed Hastings:

We bid on Jeremy Clarkson’s show and they bid more. By the time they won it, we were like ‘Wow, that’s a lot of money.’ Maybe it’ll work for them, it might well. It could be a great show. You can’t tell until you’ve seen it. We lost on that one, there’s other ones we won.

8. The Grand Tour is NOT associated with Drivetribe

Don’t think of Drivetribe as a website for The Grand Tour. If you haven’t heard about Drivetribe, it will be a community website consisting of different tribes, each representing niches within the automotive sphere. Click here to follow our coverage of Drivetribe, what it’s about, and how they’ve managed to raise a ton of money from these investors, and this gigantic production company.



Drivetribe is a completely separate effort led up by Wilman, Clarkson, Hammond, and May, and you should lower your expectations if you’re hoping to see some crossover between the The Grand Tour show and the website.

According to Business Insider:

Drive Tribe chief executive Ernesto Schmitt said their Amazon contract “specifically carves out the ability for Clarkson, Hammond and May to do this” and the tech giant is “absolutely fine” with the arrangement.

Serial tech entrepreneur Schmitt admitted that the former “Top Gear” team are “going to be very busy men,” but he argued that they are “totally committed and passionate” about both projects.

9. Most Importantly: The Cars!

This is a motoring show after all and the list of cars we’ve seen between the trailers, the spy shots, and the teasers all suggest that The Grand Tour will be one hell of a show. Here’s what we’ve seen so far:

Ferrari LaFerrari, McLaren P1, Porsche 918, Alfa Romeo 4C, Zenos E10 S, Aston Martin Vulcan, Rolls Royce Dawn, Aston Martin DB11, Dodge Challenger, Ford Mustang GT, Ford Focus RS, and quite possibly some Reliant Robins:

If you’re excited about The Grand Tour as we are, then you should already be subscribed for Amazon Prime, as that is the only way to watch the show. NO, this will not air on any television program (though there may be plans for it in the future, long after it has aired), and NO, Amazon Prime is not actually a channel itself. If you want more details on how to subscribe to Amazon Prime, please click on the link here. November 18th will be here sooner than you think!

About Hansen

The engineer amongst the crew, Hansen once built a mini baja car with his bare hands. Hansen had the opportunity to join Honda’s R&D team in Ohio but chose the life of the east coast and the defense industry instead. A die hard auto enthusiast he religiously follows the auto industry and loves long walks in the auto shows.

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