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Operation Desert Stumble is the second episode of The Grand Tour. It was released on Amazon Prime on 25th November, 2016.

SynopsisEdit

The tent is at the Cradle of Humankind nature reserve overlooking Johannesburg. Clarkson, Hammond, and May discuss President of South Africa Jacob Zuma, the Nkandla compound firepool controversy and carjacking.

Clarkson and The American test the Aston Martin Vulcan around the Eboladrome, where it becomes the fastest car to do a lap so far.

Producer Andy Wilman sends the presenters to the King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Centre outside Amman, Jordan for a Special Air Service-style military training exercise. The catch to the exercise is that every time one of the trio is "killed," they have to restart the exercise.

The trend of self-built cars in South Africa is discussed, with car-builder Johan Ackermann showing off his self-built replica of a Sauber Mercedes C9. Impressively, he got the dimensions right by scaling up the size of a 1:32 model of the supercar.

In the first of a series of short segments titled "Making James May Do Something He Doesn't Want to Do", May visits Soweto to take part in the South African motorsport of "Spinning" where cars generate smoke by performing doughnuts set to rap music until the tyres blow out.

For Celebrity Brain Crash, a person introduced as actress "Charlize Theron" is pounced on by a lion and "killed" en route to the tent. Serves her right for refusing the offer of transport on a hovercraft.

Finally the presenters return to KASOTC in Jordan to review an Audi S8 Plus while rescuing a VIP (dressed as the Queen) and transporting them to the "British Embassy." Clarkson says that the trio completed the training course in 9 hours, 48 minutes which was only "nine and a half hours slower than the actual soldiers."

Cars featuredEdit

Featured Cars
ImageCarDriverNotes
Aston Martin Vulcan
Aston Martin Vulcan
Jeremy Clarkson
Mike Skinner
7-litre V12 engine with 820 horsepower, 0-62 in 2.9 seconds, and a top speed of 208mph (with rear wing).
Sauber Mercedes C9
Sauber Mercedes C9
Johan Ackermann
Fully road-legal, this Sauber Mercedes C9 was self built by Johann Ackermann.
Audi S8 Plus
Audi S8 Plus
Jeremy Clarkson
4-litre twin turbo V8 engine with 597 horsepower, 0-62 in 3.8 seconds, and a top speed of 155mph (limited).

TriviaEdit

  • When May reads Willman's message about redoing the military training exercise every time a presenter is "killed", Clarkson indirectly references the 2014 Tom Cruise film Edge of Tomorrow.
  • In the final part of the exercise, as Clarkson is shot in the back while running toward the finish line, he imitates the death of Sgt. Elias in the 1986 film Platoon.

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