Top Gear and Jeremy Clarkson's controversies over the years

Over the years, Jeremy Clarkson and his co-stars James May and Richard Hammond have been at the centre of several controversies while hosting BBC show Top Gear.

Here are some of the most memorable moments that landed them in hot water:

2003 – Jeremy drives a pick-up into a horse chestnut tree in a car park in Somerset, to test the strength of a Toyota. The BBC apologised to the parish council and agreed to donate £250 towards a local project.

2008 – Jeremy makes a joke during an episode about lorry drivers murdering prostitutes, which attracts more than 1,000 complaints to the BBC and over 500 to media regulator Ofcom. The presenter was later cleared of breaking broadcasting codes.

2010 – Jokes made during the show about Mexicans, which included them being branded “lazy”, “feckless” and “flatulent”, spark controversy and prompt an apology from the BBC to the Mexican ambassador.

2011 – During a 90-minute India special a car fitted with a toilet in the boot is described by Jeremy as “perfect for India because everyone who comes here gets the trots”. Along with viewer complaints, the High Commission of India in London complained to the BBC, condemning the episode’s “offensive” use of “toilet humour”.

2012 – Jeremy is found to have breached BBC guidelines by comparing a Japanese car to people with growths on their faces. During the Top Gear episode, the presenter also impersonated Joseph Merrick, otherwise known as the Elephant Man.

2014 – Jeremy is embroiled in controversy after it is claimed he used the N-word while reciting the nursery rhyme Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe during filming.

2014 – Top Gear is ruled to have breached broadcasting rules after Jeremy used the word “slope” to describe an Asian man during a Burma special.

2014 – The Top Gear crew is forced to flee Argentina after trouble erupted when it emerged they were using a Porsche with the registration number H982 FKL, which some suggested could refer to the Falklands conflict of 1982.

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