Ground-breaking Off-Roaders: New Defender, Ariel Nomad, Suzuki Jimny |

Ground-breaking Off-Roaders: New Defender, Ariel Nomad, Suzuki Jimny |


Here’s a quick compilation of some of the best off-roaders we’ve featured on the channel, doing what they do best. No, not the school run. Off-roading! There’s the new Land Rover Defender 110 being put through its paces in Namibia, the Suzuki Jimny takes on a Triumph Scrambler motorcycle in an off-road time-trial, and the Ariel Nomad climbs a rather snowy mountain… in a blizzard. Series 28: Geneva Online Motor Show: First Look: Want to watch a bit of on the internet? Welcome to the most comprehensive collection of official clips you’ll find on YouTube. Whether you’re searching for a caravan challenge, Ken Block in the Hoonicorn, cars versus fighter jets, Stig power laps or the latest Chris Harris Drives, you can find all the iconic films here.

this is the van’s l past the fiercest off-road examination in namibia and we’re about to drive over it and plunge 600 metres into the valley below the steepest parts of this pass of 35 degrees that’s like driving down a black ski run that’s covered in boulders in a two and a half ton car the next 20 kilometers are going to take us two and a half hours time to deploy some of the defenders technology so you can delve into the menus and control everything manually select the amount of diff lock you want the amount of slip you want on each wheel or you can be very under fender and just put the terrain response mode in auto and let the car decide for you what it wants to do by the way you can see on the display in the centre here what’s going on with your diff sand your various angles what you must do is remember to put the car into low range mode for that you put the gear leaver in neutral you hit this button it says low you get your green icon on the screen and you’re aware you must also put the car in its off-road height standard cars come on coil springs of course this is on air suspension that self– levels it lowers when you need to do stuff like load the boot or can stand up in its tiptoes for more extreme stuff like this right think we’re ready off we go let the car do the work Jack let the card so the chassis on the new defender is called dx7 it’s an aluminium monocoque it does have certain things in common with other aluminium platforms that lam Rover makes but it’s basically 90% all new parts and it’s the stiffest body that they’ve ever made which when you’re driving up and down what basically amounts to sheer cliff faces here that’s very reassuring indeed there is some pretty smart technology at my fingertips if I can bring myself to take my fingertips off the wheel you hit this camera symbol down here on road mode and you get this incredible 3d view of the car as viewed from the outside it’s called 360 Scout the idea being like it’s like having a passenger who’s got out the car and is scouting the track ahead for you and it is pure witchcraft not a tarnished short how it works something to do with merging the images from all five cameras around the car and creating this picture you see down here but it’s absolutely brilliant I bet you that’d be really useful on with the Streeters as well as well insane mountain passes like this also if we hit off-road mode down here you’ve got the invisible bonnet mode this is even clever I think because it’s taking an image of the road in front of the car then delaying that image and feeding it to this camera feed here so you’ve effectively got the position of your front wheels and an image of what’s going on under the car in real time which is super useful when there’s jagged rocks everywhere that could puncture all your tires it’s amazing stuff if you buy this car you owe it to the engineer’s to go and do some of this stuff you don’t have to come to Africa you can do it in the UK but you need to see what this car is capable of it’s absolutely phenomenal and that’s what happens when you don’t get it right anyway first big test complete next things were about to open up considerably as we entered the Marion loose just look at the scale of this places lutely stunning and the surface has changed once again we’re now running on loose sand were following these tracks which I’m told and laid down mainly by Toyota’s most of the cars around here at Toyota pickups which has a slightly narrower track than this defender and what that means is that it has a tendency to make the car we’ve left and right in a slightly disconcerting manner but I’m told is completely normal so I’m going to ignore it for now we’ve got some distance to cover today so it’s the perfect time to kick back and reflect on the fact that the defender really is a very very good roadtrip car it’s not luxury in the sense of leather and nolde metal switches like you get in a Bentley the luxury here is space because you’ve got all this storage space big storage bins in the doors and you’ve got this beam that runs right across the middle of the – magnesium alloy beam you do get one of those in a Range Rover except it’s covered up here they’ve just exposed it in the defender and created this really really useful shelf for all your roadtrip crap the Dickie seat so you’ve basically got the option of having a normal center console or you can have this third seat in the middle so when it’s folded down like this you’ve got cup holders here you’ve got various power outlets behind it you’ve got somewhere to put your phone back here but then when you need to give someone extra a lift you just flip it up like this and there we go three seats in the front okay we’ve got some kilometers to kill so I’ve got a side mission animal spotting I’m told there’s elephant giraffe rhino lions and baboons around here I can’t be certain we’ll see them and clearly I’m no Attenborough per eyes peeled full safari mode engaged James get the camera out look giraffe oh man I’m not joking it’s about to draw I’m a semi joking when I said we’re gonna see some animals we look at it still buzzing from our epic close encounter we arrive at our lodge just before dark grab a beer and collect my thoughts all right that’s the end of the day back at the extremely modest lodge just down the massive day that was the big one it all started basically out of our tent brush your teeth straight down the van Zell pass massively steep a huge test for the carpet it really shocked it off the thing about the defendants it makes you look like an off-road expert when really I’m doing a little more than putting it in the right mode and resting my foot on the throttle its off-road it’s a good fun actually because Nick Rogers the chief engineer on the defender showed me how to rock a defender back and forth you balance two wheels and then you have the other two hanging in the air great fun felt a little bit like it might be my initiation into the off-road fraternity one-handed from there we headed down into the Marion flues this incredible expanse of sand really good fun lots of speed we could slide the car around a bit there felt like proper Africa big sky big landscapes couple of flat tires that was quite a beauty luckily I was on hand to wield the wheel nut gun and then we came across this shot middle of nowhere we’d been driving for hundreds of kilometres hadn’t seen another car and suddenly this souvenir shop pops up and I wear bracelets wooden elephants what an amazing existence they live and work there in the middle of nowhere I set myself the task of seeing some animals basically I decided I was on a safari and my thought we’d hit the jackpot and I spot giraffe about 600 meters away we got a shot of it came around the corner boom an entire herd of giraffes it was amazing we just crawled along with them tried not to disturb them and the car completely resilient totally unstoppable but also quite a lot of fun I wouldn’t call it nimble but it certainly has a balance to it I feel like I’m starting to bond with the car so much fun quite a lot to process so I think on that note I’m just gonna be rim say cheers sign off if I get some sleep here we are on our way south through France Mont Ventoux is several hundred miles that way and if conditions are this bad here what’s it gonna be like when we get there we’ve got kit in the Nomad which is mostly surviving at the front of the rig though the discovery is brilliant not only is it sailing through nasty conditions like this we’ve got it set up like a mobile office but James the videographer and Mark the photographer so they can do a load of editing we will start with a little handbrake turn right time to open the gate I’m so excited about this is the key to the mountain a pack so exciting here it is flanking a curse you can no your honor so you might be wondering what’s going on here well I’ve had the Nomad for several months now and it has been utterly terrific I’ve used it every day done 6,000 miles in it but up until now what it hasn’t had is a proper adventure this is a proper adventure out here is Montag – in summer it’s really famous as a stage of the Tour de France in winter no one comes here no one comes here because it’s so hostile so I’m running out the boat loose roads the partner said it I don’t suppose you ever let anyone on the mountain in winter and they said well no one’s ever asked but if you want the key to the barrier come and get it so I went and got it and this is the result it’s minus 10 minus 15 out here it’s blowing an absolute Huli we’ve stuck on the lee side so you’re not in the wind at the moment and we’re just driving up I want to get to the summit what I really want is a proper sunset at the summit because that will look amazing I’m in the heart of fraud during the brexit negotiation and I’m flying a Union Jack from my car as I attempt good conquer a mountain I’m sure there’s some sort of analogy in there somewhere funnily enough will you go snow you’ve actually got traction when you’ve got ice not so much at all this is the cold attempt a just near the summit of Mont Vaughn – it’s the windiest point on the mountain when we pile the Nomad on the other side the flag was blowing so hard it was pretty much most elated about touching the skis it doesn’t flap that much at 80 miles an hour on the motorway we’ve got icicles developing down by the number plate down here if the flag I think the flag at some stage surely the flag is gonna take flight the higher we went the more the cloud and wind closed in and the more the cars struggled and then I got the Nomad stuck you can see for the win scoop is all blocked up whoop it goes a little bit of a drift so the front wheels Road up over it the back wheels just fell into it broke through the cross so a little bit of digging tell us how I have us out in ten minutes call for now keep it warm at least except my fingers my fingers on this side have gone completely numb righty-ho so go try it if you can get a postmark they both be civil Siri utilize excess there we go right on the summit the nomads made it better than that discoveries made it as well it’s so vicious up here but look we’re just about getting some sunlight coming through as the clouds cleared the landscape was revealed and nature put on a stunning display at sunset we toasted our success and reflected on an amazing day parts of it had been tough but slipping and sliding up a snowy deserted mountain in a car so perfectly attuned to the conditions so responsive so charismatic so much pure unadulterated undiluted raw fun well that made this one of the best days ever here at top gear we’ve been a little bit slack if I’m honest we still haven’t bought you a video review of the brilliant new Suzuki Jimny how can you not love this thing but today we’re gonna put that right with the help of two extra wheels and a bit of a brace this is the scrambler 1200 X II triumph newest and most capable member of the scrambler family the E in X e stands for extreme because this has longer travel off-road suspension upgraded electronics and wider bars so it’s proper adventure spec not just a retro makeover a bit like the Suzuki Jimny then it might be Diddy but this isn’t just some lifestyle SUV yes it works when around town and is really no bigger than a box of tissues but it’s actually a hard as nails little off-roader at heart by the way yes these are all season road tires rather than knobbly off-road tires suzuki was confident they would cope with what we have planned today now clearly there are some fairly major discrepancies between these two vehicles number of wheels is the obvious one but also weight and weather protection but there are similarities engines this has a 1.2 liter twin with 89 brake horsepower the car has just 11 horsepower more from a 1.5 liter engine a hundred horsepower both a naturally aspirated both have manual gearboxes the bike costs from around 12 and a half grand this starts from 15 and a half grand but most importantly despite the fact that both of these look fantastic when you’re poncing around outside a cafe both of them are born to be off-road so here’s the plan we’re at triumphs incredible adventure experience center at the foot of the Brecon Beacons in wales that have ourselves a little race car versus bike one at a time against the clock around a loop that involves loose gravel big bumps and slopes riding the triumph annoyingly talented Matt Reed driving the Jimny is the annoyingly competitive me right bike first let’s see what I can learn from the pro by Matt you ready start your engine mate three two one you won’t be happy with that star it will spin there the unprofessional I see him you look nervous didn’t he you could tell it’s um it’s the gymnast and intimidating machine isn’t it it’s gone quite high that means he’s falling off down the side of a ravine when absolutely hammering it into the distance I’m gonna set a time that I can’t even get close to so I’ve tried to memorize where these big bumps are the one that will break my suspension and the rest of us can take flat flat as I can there pop the downhill stuff because then I’ll understeer hang on a minute stand back here he comes oh he comes he’s still on the bike he’s still on the bike ah not bad three minutes twenty is it a good time nobody knows I literally have no reference point but that is my target three twenty point oh five come to me time to beat it right three minutes 22 beat should not be a problem for a car of the gym knees caliber proper little off-road as I said so you’ve got rear-wheel drive mode four-wheel drive mode and then low range four-wheel drive made we’re going to go for four-wheel drive mode there’s the satisfying mechanic called clunk ready to go the perfect start with four-wheel drive the zero loss of traction right we’re off this is the flat I’m getting it speed up here well flat-ish alright here’s the plan don’t crash that’s it that’s the whole plan second get long gears in this thing you’ve only got five of them so now if my memory serves there’s a fairly bumpy section coming up here who is come on you’re we’d be steep right downhill this is the one bit of the track I figured out well I’m actually quicker than a motorbike here we go through the puddle through the gate it’s more rarely driving than off-roading this but there are a few seconds loose that’s about half of the course level I mean I have nothing to gauge this with but in my mind I am ahead and streets ahead of the motorbike pull this car design for this well they said it can go off-road it can handle loose surfaces they say it’s super stable into first gear for the uphill slope this is the beat oh come on look at that traction unbelievable that was quicker than the bike up there right all right right-hander tight into the left-hander and it’s downhill here all bumps with a ghost or something we get there here’s the finish line I can see his face he’s worried already and across the line now I don’t want to blow my own trumpet for that Coakley bet me three minutes twenty good absolutely tingling with the adrenaline go on men give it to me I think there’s something wrong with your clock wait five minutes it’s hang on that struggle one minute forty slower than you yes yeah I think your phone might be broken you might want to take that to Carphone Warehouse after that I did devil Jackie I think you all right it’s a fair result but how impressed are you with this little car tough as nails in there I’m impressed considering I know every rock addiction but that’s probably worth about a minute 40 around here would you say maybe I’ll take that as a mol victory so there you have it a comprehensive picture of the file and awesome machine but I can’t tell you how impressive the Jimny is when you throw it at the scenery the ground clearance means you just fly over everything most of these won’t see action beyond the supermarket carpark and that’s a bit of a shame because it’s so much more capable than its size or badge or price tag suggests a proper little indestructible brick of a car this is for not much money at all which brings me to the 4-hour drive back to London and a bit of a chill in the air looks like it might rain getting pretty dark it’s only one of the two I should really drive home well only live one you

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