Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond do not like the Toyota Prius. The trio constantly berated the vehicle during their stint on Top Gear, in fact Clarkson once said he’d rather gaze at the back of a baboon than look at the fuel-sipping hybrid again. Those aren’t exactly high marks.
The gang’s new show, The Grand Tour, premieres on Amazon Prime this Friday, but ahead of the first episode, the show’s producers have channeled the trio’s disdain for the car in an unusual way — they left wrecked Priuses all over the world. Three destroyed examples were placed in London, Berlin, and Los Angeles, but they weren’t simply crashed into walls and left there. Instead, the production team put the hybrids through an elaborate transformation process to make the scenes look real, and Digital Trends got an exclusive first look at how they did it.
As shown in the time lapse video above, the Los Angeles Prius had its front section completely lopped off, then the producers stood it on end to make it look like it’d driven off a building. After adding some rubble for good measure, they transported it to Hollywood Boulevard with a license plate that read “CL4RK50N” to make sure people made the connection. Clarkson may never get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, but honestly, this is much more fitting for his personality.
As you might expect, not everyone was thrilled about the stunt. Gary Rae, Director of Communications and Campaigns for the road safety charity Brake, released the following statement to The Guardian. “This is a crass, insensitive and desperate stunt,” he said. “Though I’m not surprised, as this team has a track record of glorifying speed, and ignoring the devastating consequences of dangerous driving. Programs like Top Gear and its new rival, Grand Tour, need to recognize that car worship is dated and misplaced.”
As for us, we’ll be enjoying our favorite dated and misplaced pastime this Friday on Amazon Prime.