Automotive presenter legend Richard Hammond has been working to hone his car review skills for decades. The Richard Hammond we’re used to seeing on Top Gear and the Grand Tour took years of work to develop his car review skills on a lesser-known show called Granada Men & Motors. To see just how far he’s come in the world of automotive television, Richard sat down and watched a few clips of his first car review gig for the Drivetribe YouTube channel.
If you’re not familiar with Richard Hammond, he was the original co-host to Jeremy Clarkson on the new BBC Top Gear when it debuted in 2002. Before joining Top Gear, Richard cut his teeth as an automotive presenter for a show called Men & Motors, which was shown on the Granada channel. Today Richard still works with his team from Top Gear including Jeremy Clarkson and James May on their Amazon Prime show The Grand Tour.
Richard worked on Top Gear from 2002 to 2015 when Top Gear went on a brief hiatus following the departure of Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May.
The first clip of Richard’s early car reviews shows him at a Car Show where he is giving an overview of the then-new Morgan V8. Richard is very critical of his young reviewer persona but is appalled to learn that he stated Morgan’s use wood in their chassis, which is a major inaccuracy.
Next up is a review Richard presented for the R53 Mini Cooper S. Richard goes into detail about how low budget the reviews really were and how little time he actually spent with the subject car. The funny part is that in those days Richard didn’t even own a car so a press car for a week would have been a huge help for him.
Although a lot has changed it’s more remarkable to see just how similar Richard’s current on-air work is to his early days. Sure his hair has changed, but it’s still the same Richard Hammond enthusiastically sharing his love for cars with his fans.