Fire Up the Quattro (also known as Top Gear Meets Ashes to Ashes) was a non canon mini episode of Ashes to Ashes made for Children in Need 2008. It guest starred Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond as himself.
While admiring the Audi Quattro in 1981, Richard Hammond is caught on the scene by DCI Gene Hunt and demanded to raise his hands in the air. After revealing his admiration for the car, he asks politely for a test drive which Hunt reluctantly agrees to after discovering Hammond co-hosts a car show "with two other blokes" and that his nickname was "hamster" due to his height and name. After driving around the area in the Quattro to "Jessica" by the Allman Brothers (which is also the Top Gear theme), Hammond invites DI Alex Drake her to join and "meet the Stig". Due to Hammond's expert driving skill, Hunt walks away humiliated, telling DC Chris Skelton to shut up.
- DCI Gene Hunt - Philip Glenister
- DI Alex Drake - Keeley Hawes
- DC Chris Skelton - Marshall Lancaster
- DS Ray Carling - Dean Andrews
- Himself - Richard Hammond
This episode is non-canon because behind DCI Hunt, DI Drake, DC Skelton and DS Carling are cars and vans that would not be made until the 21st Century. It is also non-canon because Hammond refers to the 2002 format of Top Gear which DI Drake recognises as a programme of "boys with their toys".
The title of the episode of based on the quote "Let's fire up the Quattro" which DCI Hunt makes before him and the CID team set off to rescue the kidnapped WPC Sharon Granger (A2A Series 1: Episode 1).