It didn’t work for Miami Vice, and it’s not going to fly for Top Gear either.
According to reports published in Drive magazine, Top Gear substituted re-badged Toyota’s for Ferrari’s while performing stunt sequences during their world tour in Auckland. Hell-bent on preserving brand integrity, Ferrari immediately requested that Top Gear end the charade and use real Ferrari’s for the last leg of their live tour in Hong Kong. Responding to the allegations, the BBC would not directly ‘fess up to the crime, choosing instead to chalk it all up to the cost of doing business in the entertainment industry. “Stunt driving requires highly specialist equipment. In this sense Top Gear Live is no different from any cinema or theatrical production,” a BBC spokesperson said. “However, in the same way that magicians never divulge their secrets – we also don’t want to spoil the enjoyment and impact of the sequence by revealing how it’s done.”
Dodging Ferrari’s request for genuine prancing horses during the finale, the spokesperson went on the explain that the drift cars used during the Hong Kong show were “tailored” to appeal to the specific interests of the audience and did not include any Ferrari’s, authentic or otherwise.