The Grand Tour The Grand Tour Series 1

The Grand Tour: Series 1, Episode 8 – The Beach (Buggy) Boys Part 2

  • In the second show of a two-part special, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May are battling across Namibia in a quest to prove that beach buggies are brilliant.
  • Having survived the challenges of the desert, the trio must now brace themselves for even greater hardship involving rough roads, camping, rhino conservation and a rather unusual river crossing.


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Episode Guide

Clarkson finally arrives in Windhoek to meet up with Hammond and May and prepare for the second leg of their journey to the Namibia-Angola border. The rough road takes its toll on Clarkson and May’s buggies until May suggests they continue off-road, which ends up being worse terrain and they end up in softer sand before returning to the road.

After the trio sets camp, May attempts to sabotage Clarkson’s buggy when he accidentally sets fire to the front end of his own car. With a third of a mile away from the border, the presenters create a cable car line to cross through a crocodile infested river.

Clarkson and May cross successfully, but Hammond is stuck within 200 meters from the goal. Because of this, Clarkson concludes that their failure has proven Wilman right.


0:02:29 – Since all three hosts both struggle to read without spectacles and are quite clumsy/forgetful, reading glasses are now the biggest drain on The Grand Tour budget.

0:03:58 – Jeremy is correct when he notes that Richard Hammond’s idea of the perfect holiday is camping in the British Lake District. It’s very damp there.

0:04:12 – ‘Richard Baden-Hammond’ – a reference to Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the British Boys Scouts movement and therefore, we must presume, someone who enjoyed a good tent.

0:05:45 – Gearhead intel alert: Modifications to the Rover V8 in Jeremy’s beach buggy include an Edelbrock carburettor and manifold, hotter cams, a higher compression ratio, a high performance distributor, shortened pulleys, and a custom-made exhaust.

0:06:02 – More gearhead info: The VW Beetle flat four engine in Richard’s beach buggy has been stroked to 1915cc, then fitted with a twin 40 DRLA carbs, Engle 120 cams, big valve heads and electronic ignition.

0:07:13 – It’s much less relevant but, if you’re interested, the flat four Beetle engine in James’s beach buggy has been stroked to 1776cc and fitted with twin 44 IDF Weber carbs, Engle 110 cams, big valve heads and electronic ignition.

0:08:53 – James Dyson – British dust magnate, famed for his vacuum cleaner range.

0:13:40 – Over the years there have been many studies into rhino horn which have found it to have no medicinal properties. The horn is formed from keratin, the same stuff as makes hair, finger nails and animal hooves. So really, you’d get the same effect from biting your nails.

0:15:42 – James May does not take part in the parasailing plan since he has a long standing dislike of heights.

0:16:12 – Giovanni’s screams as he parasails were very real indeed since he turned out to have a massive fear of heights but was too polite to mention it before take off.

0:19:08 – Richard Hammond likes helicopters. He has a license to fly them. He just doesn’t like dangling underneath them.

0:22:38 – Having a beach buggy electrical problem did nothing for James May’s inherent mistrust of electricity. He says he doesn’t ‘really believe in it’.

0:23:29 – ‘Oh my giddy aunt’ – old British exclamation relating to an imaginary and crazy relative, typically deployed in moments of duress such as when about to fry yourself with petrol in the middle of Namibia.

0:26:34 – Spiffying – Excellent, tremendous, tip top. Another old British word, once popular with posh people, used here with another old British favourite, sarcasm.

0:27:25 – ‘Every bone in his crotch, that’s what I’m going to break’ – a knowing homage to a line in the 1974 movie Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry.

0:42:13 – The Rover V8 in Jeremy’s beach buggy was originally designed by Buick in Detroit then sold to the British company who made design changes so it was suitable for conditions in the UK. But not, sadly, in Namibia.

0:46:34 – Namibia used to be part of the German Empire and, strangely enough, ‘waterfall’ is one of the few German words James May knows. What a coincidence. Also, of no use whatsoever.

0:49:51 – Jeremy Clarkson actually has TWO engineering degrees. Although they’re honorary degrees and didn’t require any study of engineering whatsoever.

0:57:39 – James was so in love with his beach buggy, and clearly so drunk on the beach at the end, that he decided to have it shipped back to the UK, fully rebuilt, and delivered to his garage so he can zoom about in it during the summer.


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Rosalyn Morrow November 9, 2020 at 6:39 am

PLEASE would someone tell me what car paint was used on JC’s beach buggy? I really like that sparkly purple!

Nicolas Molli February 7, 2018 at 1:45 am


Scooby252 January 4, 2017 at 8:00 pm

It was an nice change hearing the swearing as it made it more realistic but also glad they still beeped out the f words , however it wasn’t their best adventure yet (i think the Vietnam 1 is best) it felt a little like the India special where the 1000 mile journey felt like 300 miles. Like the more they showed the map route the shorter it felt to me.

vancouverbill January 2, 2017 at 6:00 am

Happy New Year Sean!
a Happy New Year to the faithful readership of this excellent website.
-and thank you Sean for all your effort towards creating and maintaining it!!
snowed again last night… pleasant weather down under I trust…..

Restalot January 1, 2017 at 3:53 am

Well, call me entertained. I loved that they did back-to-back episodes, it really made it feel like a special event. Netflix gave us the original ‘binge’ watching and Amazon is making streaming TV an event again… great job (although I’m not sure this formula would work for every show).

While part 2 had its moments, it seemed to come into the ‘script’ a little more for the special. Part 1 felt a little more organic and natural as they just goofed around and took shots at each other. Part 2 felt more like ‘them’ versus the ‘production script’ where they needed to check boxes before the end. The chemistry of just fun dropped down a little.

That said, an enjoyable evenings entertainment I’ll watch again and again.

Caitlin Thomas December 31, 2016 at 5:39 pm

Saw it through the use of PureVPN. Thanks to PureVPN for making me subscribe to it.

the guy with no name December 31, 2016 at 11:13 am

Good episode, though I’m a bit confused by the censorship. They censor some swearing but leave things like ‘shit’ in.

Sean McKellar December 31, 2016 at 11:23 am

Interesting – I streamed it via Amazon US and dont recall any words being censored.

the guy with no name January 1, 2017 at 10:39 pm

I watch it on the UK one and the inconsistency is a bit annoying.


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