Fifth Gear - Monday May 28

fifth gear (5/10)

More motoring thrills and spills as Fifth Gear continues its 11th series with Vicki ButlerHenderson, Tom Ford, Tiff Needell and Jason Plato at the helm. This week, Darren Gough goes head to head with Jason Plato on Britain’s most extreme off-road course.

Yorkshire cricket captain and England hero Darren Gough has always wanted to take his Volkswagen Touareg 4×4 off-road –now he has the chance to do it in style. Will he be faster than Touring Car leader Plato across the jaw-dropping inclines, deep water and narrow mountain tracks?

Elsewhere, Jonny Smith goes on an unusual road trip in a £250,000 Rolls-Royce Phantom – often hailed as the greatest car in the world. Jonny takes it across Europe at breakneck speed, only stopping for rest at local campsites. What is it like to own and drive a car like this? In his 1,000-mile journey across four countries, Jonny finds out. Avoiding the rose-tinted deference usually associated with the Phantom, Jonny presents just cold, hard facts.

Tom Ford’s task this week is to test the new Porsche Cayenne Turbo. This £75,000 SUV has 500bhp and a 171mph top speed, and can reach 62mph in just five seconds. It has supercar performance, but is it the ultimate 4×4?

Self-confessed car addict Vicki ButlerHenderson, meanwhile, tries to exist for 24 hours without a car. In a few new housing schemes across the UK, buyers must sign a contract guaranteeing they will sell their car. But is this radical way of battling congestion feasible? Vicki tackles three challenges to see if a no-car life is for her – but as her weekly shopping tumbles across the bus floor, will she have second thoughts?

Finally this week, Tiff Needell is at Cadwell Park for the long-awaited return of the Fifth Gear Shoot-Out, where two similarly priced cars race against each other. Tonight, the Renault Clio 197 takes on the brand new Vauxhall Corsa VXR. On paper, these £16,000 baby hot-hatches are closely matched, with the Vauxhall just edging ahead in terms of straight line performance. Will a lap round the track settle the debate?

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