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Characters / The Grand Tour

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This is a page describing the presenters and other assorted personalities involved in The Grand Tour.

The Presenters Collectively
Being friends doesn't mean you can't annoy the crap out of each other.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Clarkson and Hammond
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Occasionally, in more than one road trip special.
  • Flanderization: Played up more than it was on Top Gear (UK), at least in parts of the studio segments. Hammond is excitable, crass and prone to crashing, Clarkson is overconfident but incompetent, and May is old-fashioned, fussy, and easily annoyed.
  • Freudian Trio:
    • Clarkson: Id
    • Hammond: Ego
    • May: Superego
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Often one will accuse the other two of "inappropriate touching" behind the scenes. Jeremy's photo album of Richard found at the destruction of Clarkson's house does not help matters.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: All three of them play up the Jerkass angle. In Real Life behind the scenes, however, they're a bit different.
  • Odd Couple: Clarkson (brash and out-going) and May (quiet and sensible).
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  • One Head Taller: Clarkson (6'5") and Hammond (5'7").
  • True Companions: Clarkson did not get his contract renewed after punching a producer on Top Gear. The other two were offered huge salaries by the BBC to continue without him, but quit instead. The three, along with producer Andy Wilman, all made the move to Amazon together. Perhaps May said it the best:
    May: "Much as I think he's a knob, I quite like working with Jeremy."
  • Universal Driver's License: So far, they've driven almost anything they've been put behind the wheel of.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: They will happily pull nasty pranks and laugh uproariously when terrible things happen to their co-presenters... although this tends to stop abruptly if one of them gets genuinely hurt and/or when Real Life problems crop up and they drop the fooling around. However, expect them to tease the person injured after the fact when he is fully recovered.

Jeremy Clarkson
He's a nice long as you're not Piers Morgan or a TV producer.

The leader of the central trio: the oldest, tallest, and most obstreperous. He tends to be very vocal in his dislikes and self-confident to the point of arrogance. Also physically the most fragile. Given his choice of cars (and most everything else, really) he prefers sheer raw power (preferably with the noise to go with), then control, and then speed. He is also the most likely to get into hot water for his on-air remarks, the number of which is too large to get into here. When all is said and done, however, the man is genuinely passionate in his admiration of and respect for good engineering, and not just automotive engineering, he's known for being an all-round technophile, possibly because he's not that skilled at designing something from scratch, and therefore recognizes how hard it really is to do.

He also writes a weekly column for The Sun, does the occasional one-off documentary, and is a semi-regular on several panel shows such as QI and Have I Got News for You.

  • The Big Guy: His height, an impressive 196cm (6'5" if you're American) is the frequent butt of jokes, and he often winds up getting stuck with the small cars for comedic purposes.
    • He has trouble fitting through the safety frame of the Aston Martin Vulcan.
    • He laments being too tall (the other two jokingly add "too fat") to fit behind the wheel of the Ford GT40 that May drove during his Ford vs Ferrari LeMans segment.
    • During "Past, Present or Future", he can't fit into his Lamborghini with a crash helmet on and has to get a test driver to take his place during the hill climb.
    • He runs into the same problem in "Jaaaaags" but is able to remedy it by opening the sunroof, even if that defeats the purpose of the helmet in the first place.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: Generally of Americans or of Hammond.
  • The Captain: The unofficial leader of the three.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Closing out the episodes with "And on that terrible disappointment..."
    • "POWAAAAAAAAAAAH!" while accelerating. Or less frequently, "SPEEEEEEEEEED!"
    • "Hammond, you idiot!" whenever Richard does something to inconvenience him.
    • Starting around Season 2, he gained the Mad Libs Catch Phrase of ending disagreements with "Look, let's not get bogged down with [whatever the disagreement is about]..."
  • Caustic Critic: Clarkson pulls no punches when it comes to cars (or anything) he reviews, and will call vehicles out on things he finds wrong. He's angered quite a few car companies this way. Given that his previous criticism of Tesla caused him to be sued, he had to consult lawyers to talk about the faults of the one he reviews in Season 2. He hates every minute of it.
  • Crazy Awesome: Invoked by (and about) Clarkson frequently, who does things simply because he can.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He's particularly good at delivering patently ridiculous lines in a serious, authoritative tone.
  • Dramatic Pause: Practically tied with William Shatner as the living personification of this trope.
  • Epic Fail: While all the presenters have their shares of failures, in any challenge it is all but guaranteed that what ever Jeremy comes up with either crash, break down, not start, or get set on fire. Or possibly set itself on fire.
  • Hidden Depths: Clarkson is a bird watcher which is sometimes mentioned in the series. During foreign road trips he can sometimes be seen watching birds. He is often listed in "Celebrity Bird Watchers" lists.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: On occasion, Clarkson's fondness for power can override any other concerns about a vehicle, meaning, as in the case of one of the races, he might choose a car with great power, but awful fuel-economy.
  • Incoming Ham: Often Jeremy will be heard long before he's seen.
  • Insane Troll Logic: Comes up with theories, conclusions, and ideas that make absolutely no sense. For example, in order to find the weight of a car, use a giant scale and farm animals...
  • In-Series Nickname: Frequently referred to with Hammond as "Pinky and Perky" by May.
  • Insufferable Genius: He knows a lot about cars, and won't hesitate to tell you so.
  • Large Ham: Loud voice, dramatic gestures, overemphasis on certain words, and larger-than-life analogies. "Subtle" is definitely not a word used to describe Clarkson.
  • Lethal Chef: He made food with bits of Hammond's and his renewable cars in "Environ-Mental." His car was made of unrefrigerated beef that had been out in the sun all day.
  • No Indoor Voice: His default volume is "loud."
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Will play up his TV persona and act incredibly stupid for a laugh (he will often say absolutely outrageous things for the sake of entertainment, and for those who aren't in on the joke he will say things just to see how far people will believe what he's saying). He is far more intelligent than he acts, and will own up to playing the idiot when questioned seriously.
  • Percussive Maintenance: Thinks a hammer is the only tool you will ever need.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Constantly makes ridiculous and insulting pronouncements and revels in too-soon humour. This has gotten him into trouble on numerous occasions.
  • Smug Snake: Clarkson believes his plans will work purely on the principle that he says they will work. When they (inevitably) fail, he will insist that it's Never My Fault
  • Talks Like a Simile: Every other sentence of a review from Clarkson will have him compare an aspect of a car to something. Often, the connections and analogies run from "barely there" to "absolutely ridiculous."
  • Tim Taylor Technology: Devoted to the principle that power is good and more power is even better, and has a particular fondness for cars like the Bugatti Chiron, which have power-to-weight ratios that are frankly terrifying.

Richard Hammond
Crashes so much he should be permanently in bubble wrap.

The second in command: the youngest, shortest, and second-most obstreperous — and generally agreed to be the easiest on the eyes. note  Described by the others as the toughest physically but the most fragile emotionally. Tends to be chatty and moody. Given his choice, he generally wants a fast, powerful car, especially those made by Pagani and Porsche but the love of his life is a 1963 Opel Kadett with under 50 hp.

He's also hosted the British series Blast Lab, Total Wipeout and Brainiac: Science Abuse, as well as Richard Hammond's Crash Course for BBC America.

  • Berserk Button: He has a deep, passionate hatred for the Nissan Juke. He will gladly let you know about it if he sees you drive one. He also hates Genesis.
  • Book Dumb: Not keen on deeply educational things, but far from outright stupid.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: The most likely to do this, particularly during the news segments.
  • Catchphrase:
    • In the more recent series; when Clarkson asks "How hard can it be?", expect Hammond to reply "Don't say that!" or similar.
    • "That's not gone well!"
  • Does Not Like Spam: He's a picky eater but hates fish of all descriptions especially.
  • Foreign Culture Fetish: For the USA. He brings an American car to James and Jeremy's genteel grand tour of Italy and when he paints it later he adds a sexy lady in Daisy Dukes with an American flag.
  • Hot-Blooded: The presenter most likely to throw themselves fully into the challenge and get emotional over winning or losing.
  • In-Series Nickname: Frequently referred to with Clarkson as "Pinky and Perky" by May.
  • Keet: The smallest and most energetic of the show's hosts.
  • The Lancer: To Clarkson.
  • Mr. Fanservice: The most conventionally good-looking of the three. Though, as of the Grand Tour, he is increasing in poundage a little...
  • The Napoleon: The shortest presenter, as well as the most prone to losing their temper.
  • Picky Eater:
    • Constantly taunted by his co-presenters for not being as open-minded about food as them. They will often order something completely out there in order to gross him out.
    • He does not like fish in particular, and only nibbles at the one Jeremy catches in Namibia because it's all they have to eat.
  • Running Gag: If he can drive it, he will crash it. In "Enviro-mental", he actually lists all the crashes he's had in Yorkshire alone, culminating in the infamous jet-powered dragster crash. Becomes Harsher in Hindsight after he crashed a Rimac Concept One in the Swiss Alps resulting in him needing to get his knee replaced with a "Swiss Army Knee".
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Inverted with fish.
  • Waistcoat of Style: During the tent segments. It makes him appear more stylish than his older, more eccentrically dressed co-presenters.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: The normally fearless and daring Hammond is terrified of insects.

James May
Does things he hates for your amusement.

The quiet one (relatively speaking) somewhere between Clarkson and Hammond in age and height: a picture-perfect Straight Man with an understated sense of humor and a gift for deadpan delivery. Likes physics, classical music, alcohol, light aircraft and interesting facts. Far more careful than the other two, and obsessive (to the point of possibly suffering from OCD) about details, down to the proper arrangement of his tools. He is implicitly acknowledged to be the most technically savvy of the three.

May has also hosted quirky, fact-based single-series documentary programmes, as well as longer-lasting ones such as James May's Toy Stories, Oz and James, James May's Man Lab, James May's Cars Of The People, and James May: The Reassembler.

  • Ambiguous Disorder: The guys do tend to joke around that he has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or Asperger's due to the combination of his obsession with cleanliness and and order, and his Cloudcuckoolander moments. How much of this is played-up or real is an ongoing debate.
  • Berserk Button: He is extremely unhappy with cars developed on the Nürburgring and will often rant about car companies that brag on this.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Good-naturedly puts up with Clarkson and Hammond's taunts and pranks, but if he gets pushed too far, he can be harsher than both of them put together.
  • Butt-Monkey: The other two love to gang up to pull pranks on him. They also decided to add a segment to the show: "Make James Do Something He Hates."
  • Catchphrase:
    • During Celebrity Brain Crash "Does that mean he/she's not coming on?"
    • Though not as often as his time on Top Gear, his exclamation of "Oh Cock!" when things go wrong.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Seems to genuinely have this aspect to his personality.
    • For example, when trying to lure a bat out of Clarkson's roof, he stands in the barn and makes "sensual and erotic" bat noises.
    • He once asked Clarkson to sniff his jacket because "it smells of old record players."
  • Deadpan Snarker: Often used to smugly put down his co-presenters. Is also able to say but all of the most ridiculous statements with the straightest of faces.
  • Foreign Culture Fetish: For Germany. Not as potent as Hammond's for the USA but he has shown his interests in Germany more than once. He loves German cars (especially Mercedes), occasionally speaks in Gratuitous German, likes airships, and has an interest in Germany's World War II military. The only exception to this is The Nürburgring.
  • Good with Numbers: The one most likely to use maths and use them correctly.
  • Gosh Darn It to Heck!: He swears less than the other two, though he is not immune to slipping in the occasional "shit" or "cock."
  • Hates Being Touched: Not fond of "man-contact" in general, though he seems to have relaxed this slightly over the years.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: Played with. He can apparently drive fast when he wants to.
  • Iconic Outfit: His loud flowery shirts and stripey jumpers, specifically a pink and purple rugby shirt. During "The Fall Guys", he confessed the manufacturer of said jumper begged him to stop wearing it and offered him free clothes if he did. He refused, because "I'm an arse."
  • In-Series Nickname: Clarkson has taken to calling him "the old lady."
  • The Klutz: Has a tendency to fall over on slippery surfaces, as he demonstrates on-camera during the wenching segment. He also slipped coming out of a pub off-camera just before the "Italian Lessons" France trip, resulting in his broken arm.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Whenever James gets hurt in a spectacular fashion, he'll only let out a flat "Ow."
  • Neat Freak: He is only too happy to clean blood off of the tent window in Dubai while the other two continue on.
  • No Sense of Direction: Claims he has an electrical imbalance in his brain which leads to him visualizing the map of Britain upside-down.
  • Not So Above It All: While Hammond and Clarkson tend to prank him on the road trips, there's no shortage of occasion where he and one of the other two have ganged up on the third instead. In addition, he can gloat just as loudly when he wins a challenge over the others.
  • The Quiet One: Compared to Clarkson and Hammond; if he does get a word in, expect a Character Filibuster.
  • Rummage Sale Reject: Some of his favorite shirts are... loud.
  • Self-Deprecation: When he looks ridiculous, he's usually the first to point it out.
  • Silver Fox: He's gone almost completely gray.
  • The Smart Guy: If there is science to be known or maths to be done, May is the one who will effectively wield them.
  • The Stoic: He's less excitable than his colleagues and better at keeping his cool. When dealing with those who are not his co-presenters, he also falls into the "polite stoic" category.
  • Straight Man: Although as Oz and James shows, it's really only compared to the other two.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: He rarely shows his anger visibly. When he does, it's a Beware the Nice Ones moment.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: May has a fear of heights. He is not happy when Hammond tries to make him climb a ladder to help with demolishing the roof of Clarkson's house, and he uses I Need a Freaking Drink to cope with his buggy-cable car's high descent over a Namibian river.

"The American"
When it comes to The American, everything is Communist.
The American, also known as Michael "Mike" Skinner is the racing driver for The Grand Tour after the BBC decided they wanted to hold on to the Stig. He only appeared on the show in the first season...until he returned as "hallucinations" in the Season 3 RV Special.
  • Captain Patriotic: Believes all cars made overseas are "communist".
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: He's in deliberate contrast to The Stig as instead of faceless and silent, he's fully seen and vocal, especially about how everything is Communist.
  • Iconic Outfit: Wears a red, white and blue track suit and a helmet.
  • Put on a Bus: The character was retired after Mike Skinner left due to his dissatisfaction with the way the American was written.
    • However, he returned in Season 3 during the RV Special as a hallucination seen only by Clarkson, who didn't recognize him, which culminated into him burning a ring around all their RV's at the end.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Replaced The Stig as a racing driver for the three presenters.

Abbie Eaton

The replacement for The American, since "[The fans] hated him" for Series 2.
  • Expecting Someone Taller: When it was announced they had a new female racing driver, everyone expected Sabine Schmitz. Unfortunately, due to Sabine's commitment to, of all things, Top Gear, they had to go with someone else.
  • No Name Given: Isn't even given a nickname. Her name only appears in the credits, and several fans wondered who she was.
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: Before each power lap, she says one line (such as "Let's do this" or "Let's see what she's got"), presumably to differentiate herself from The Stig.

Andy Wilman
"A message from Mr. Wilman."

The long-time executive producer of Top Gear, who left alongside Clarkson, Hammond, and May, and collaborated with them to develop The Grand Tour. As the person in charge behind the scenes, Wilman takes up the role previously played by the nameless "Producers" in Top Gear, challenging the presenters to accomplish strange or difficult feats with automobiles, and serving as an antagonist when the challenges call for it.

  • He Who Must Not Be Seen: He communicates with the on-screen presenters mostly through telephone text messages, though he will resort to using the display screens in the studio tent to get their attention.
  • Mission Control: He is the source of various challenges put to the presenters.
  • They Call Me Mister Tibbs: The presenters invariably refer to him on-camera as "Mister Wilman".

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