Advanced Television

Top Gear shifts to BBC One; India deal

February 10, 2020

Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content, has confirmed that the long-running motoring entertainment show is moving to BBC One for its 29th series later this year.

The new line up of Paddy McGuinness, Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris has been a hit with viewers, and their debut series on BBC Two in June last year attracted an average consolidated audience of 3.8 million viewers, making it the channel’s most popular programme of 2019.

Following the success of this first series, the trio recently returned with even higher audience ratings, seeing the opening episode of their second series pull in an audience of more than 4.3 million (consolidated), the highest for the show in four years.

Moore commented: “The time is right to move the world’s best motor show to the nation’s most popular channel and bring it to an even broader audience on BBC One. Freddie, Paddy and Chris have revitalised the hit series with their escapades and banter; and we couldn’t have asked for a better response to their series so far and the impact it’s had with young audiences.”

Patrick Holland, Controller BBC Two, added: “Revitalising Top Gear was one of my biggest priorities when I took over BBC Two and seeing Paddy, Fred and Chris make the show their own has been an utter joy. From Peaky Blinders to Line Of Duty and now Top Gear, BBC Two is a place where unique shows can evolve and thrive before moving to even broader audiences on BBC One, it’s a vital part of the BBC portfolio.”

Meanwhile, BBC Studios has announced a licensing deal with Viacom18 Media, which will see the latest series of Top Gear air on the Indian entertainment network’s premium English entertainment channel, Colors Infinity. The multi-platform deal with Viacom18 will make series 27 of Top Gear available to Indian viewers.

Stanley Fernandes, Vice President, Distribution for BBC Studios South Asia, said: “We’re thrilled to partner with Viacom18 to bring the latest series of Top Gear to India. Audiences are going love the new trio taking control of the wheel and taking the series to another level. Expect plenty of thrills, spills and laughs.”

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