PM turns to famed diplomat Jeremy Clarkson to rescue campaign
British Prime Minister David Cameron tried to kick his flagging referendum campaign into top gear yesterday by appearing alongside his old friend Jeremy Clarkson.
Clarkson, together with James May, met the Prime Minister at TV studios in West London where he is making his new motoring show for Amazon.
With just a week left of the referendum campaign, Mr Cameron is staring at the prospect of humiliating defeat as almost all polls show Brexit is ahead.
Clarkson, a controversial figure after his sacking from the BBC last year, surprised many by endorsing the campaign to stay in the European Union.
But he joked that staying inside the EU was one of just three things he and and fellow former Top Gear host May agreed on.
Clarkson said to the PM: 'It's an extraordinary thing that James and I only agree on three things, which is sandwich spread is delicious, the old Subaru Legacy Outback is a good car and Britain staying in.'
During an informal talk with Mr Cameron over cappuccinos in Stronger In-branded mugs and croissants, Clarkson added: 'I have not, with the greatest of respect, heard one politician say anything that's caused me to change my mind.
British Prime Minister David Cameron enlisted his old mate Jeremy Clarkson in his campaign to keep the UK in Europe. Picture/AP
'There's huge numbers that don't understand and get confused. Really, it's my gut.'
Clarkson said he felt there were 'compelling' reasons for leaving.
But, he added: 'They're not compelling enough for me to say I want to drive a Morris Oxford, which is what would happen.'
Clarkson has famously insulted many countries - on one occasion getting into hot water for suggesting the first German-built Mini had turn signals that looked like a Nazi salute.
The biggest diplomatic incident triggered by the presenter focused on Argentina when he was accused of driving a car with an offensive number plate.
Despite his frequent gaffes, Clarkson is an enthusiastic European - once hosting an entire TV series dedicated to a driving tour of the continent.
May said: 'If I'm honest, it's a gut feeling for me as well.
'There are too many people who think we will be alright... but that's just not true.'
The pair discussed the effects of Brexit on the UK car industry and Mr Cameron said manufacturers would face tariffs on exports to the continent in the event of vote to leave.
He said: 'I've spent a lot of time in different car plates in the last few years and if you look at Toyota, Nissan, Jaguar, Ford they are all doing well in Britain.
'They are all expanding, they are all making more, they are all selling more and if we were out - like America was out and with a trade deal like them - they would actually face a tariff on every single car they send to Europe.'
Clarkson added that his fellow presenter Richard Hammond was filming in France for the trio's new Amazon Prime show and was still undecided on how to vote.
'He is a don't know - he does not actually know there's a referendum on,' he joked.
In his previous declaration for Remain, Clarkson said it would be 'better to stay in and try to make the damn thing work properly'.
He wrote in the Sunday Times: 'Britain, on its own, has little influence on the world stage. I think we are all agreed on that.
'But Europe, if it were well run and had cohesive, well thought-out policies, would be a tremendous force for good.'
Mr Cameron and Clarkson live close to each in Oxfordshire and the PM offered support to his friend when he lost his job at the BBC's Top Gear for punching a producer.
Clarkson and May, together with Richard Hammond, are currently working on a new motoring show for the Amazon TV streaming service.
The trio set plans in motion for the new show following Clarkson's sacking and The Grand Tour is due to air later this year.