REVEALED! Meet the Hosts of Top Gear America
All-new series is now streaming exclusively on the MotorTrend app.
After an exhaustive search, the hosts of Top Gear America have been announced: Dax Shepard, Rob Corddry, and Jethro Bovingdon! Or, as they tell it: two comedians, a guy who's actually British … and the Stig.
"If we're ever given a script, I promise the viewers that I'm going to light it on fire and throw it away," Corddry said. "So you can count on me for that, at least. I really think that the strength of this show is going to be an honest interplay between the three of us."
Related: Adventure, laughter and a whole lot of chaos! Join us for the joyride and stream the two-episode premiere of Top Gear America now only on the MotorTrend App. Start your free trial today!
Corddry, like Shepard and Bovingdon, is both a lifelong car enthusiast and big Top Gear fan.
"I feel like that's the one prerequisite the host should have," Shepard said. "Cars are my full-time hobby. It's the only reason I act: to acquire money to buy s--t that you put gas in."
Bovingdon, who doesn't own a ranch to fill with 17 different vehicles and trailers like Shepard does, is all about the driving.
"I love cars, I love driving cars, and I love doing stupid stuff in cars," Bovingdon said, "and if we get to do all of those things, I don't see how it can't be fun and fun to watch, really."
Bovingdon is well known among MotorTrend subscribers as the cohost of Head 2 Head, where he's pitted some of the greatest sports cars, trucks, and SUVs in the world against each other. Off camera, he's been found on the pages and websites of MotorTrend, Automobile, CAR, and evo. In between all that, he occasionally finds time to win his class at the 24 Hours of Nürburgring endurance race and set lap records around the world.
"One of my first cars was an E36 BMW M3 GT," he said. "I'd read it had done an 8:23 lap or something, and I foolishly—having never been to the Nürburgring—was like, 'Well, we can probably get that down to eight minutes.' I spent two years trying to make it do that. The first attempt, I think I did an 8:12, and then every time I went back after that, it broke. One time, it got stuck in fourth gear and I had to drive it back from western Germany to my home in Northamptonshire, north of London."
Shepard, known for shows like Parenthood, Bless This Mess, and the movie CHiPS, is no stranger to a racetrack, either.
"Road America is my favorite track," he said. "It's unbelievable. The fact that you could hit a deer out on the back straightaway is always thrilling. I think that track is spectacular. There's so much going on.
"I also really like Road Atlanta," he continued. "It's certainly a fun track, too. I got to race in that Lamborghini Super Trofeo series at Lime Rock, and the last turn into the straightaway, the downhill right-hander is a very precarious turn. It's surreal. You're all in or you're all out. And then Fontana, which is basically you're racing in a parking lot and then the huge bank oval, which is an incredible feeling, as well. And then of course Laguna (Seca), which is basically if you live in California, the track. That's the track I probably am on the most frequently."
With two racers on the show, you can bet there will be rivalry between them whenever they get behind the wheel.
"I think there'll be a lot of competition between Jethro and I, in a loving way," Shepard said, "Obviously, he'll win, and sometimes I'll win, and it'll be devastating when I lose, and I think that'll be fun for everyone to watch. Jethro's definitely got the seat-time advantage on me, and I've not driven any of these cars. I've never driven a McLaren or half the (cars) that he's driven."
Whatever contests Jethro, Dax, or the producers cook up, you can be sure Corddry will be stirring the pot.
"It's not going to be my role to talk about the technical (stuff)," Corddry said, also working blue, "as much as it's going to be to just go, 'Ooh,' and 'Aah,' and then pit Jethro and Dax against each other, because I want to watch those nerds fight it out."
But behind his, "I just fell into this gig" schtick, Corddry is far more than the setup man. He knows his cars. Long before he was driving exotics on HBO's Ballers, and traveling through time in a hot tub, the four-time Emmy Award winner cut his teeth on a '75 Ford Pinto Wagon with no floorboards. These days, it's a Porsche 911 Carrera S.
"Early on, in my experiences with cars at a young age," he said, "I made a choice to not get all bogged down in the details. And just get psyched about cars, in general. Yeah, I know what the different sizes of engines are and I understand why, but I don't bug myself with that.
"I was a big fan of Top Gear, the original," he continued, "I'm an enthusiast. I'm, if anything else, the audience."
Even if he's not a walking automotive encyclopedia, Corddry won't be boring.
"They gonna want me to wrestle the Stig?" he asked. "I'll wrestle the Stig. I'll Greco-Roman wrestle the Stig."
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Dax Shepard, Rob Corddry to Host ‘Top Gear America’ for Motor Trend Streaming Service
Discovery’s Motor Trend streaming service is reviving “Top Gear America” with a new trio of hosts: Dax Shepard, Rob Corddry and British journalist Jethro Bovingdon.
Set to debut in the spring, the series marks the latest effort to put a U.S. spin on the enduring U.K. franchise that celebrates the automotive world by putting the hosts through a series of racing- and travel-related challenges, among other elements. The Motor Trend announcement includes a photo of the hosts with a new incarnation of the show’s famed mystery driver — whose identity is always shielded by a helmet — known as “the Stig.”
“Top Gear America” will be produced mostly out of Los Angeles but will incorporate a “never-ending road show” around the U.S., according to Alex Wellen, global president and general manager of MotorTrend Group.
“This show has to be unapologetically fixated on American car culture and its influence around the world,” said Wellen said he has high hopes for the trio of hosts to generate the kind of chemistry that made “Top Gear” a worldwide hit. “This show is one of those where talent is everything,” he said. He confirmed that appearances by the Stig will be a feature of the series.
“Top Gear America” will be produced by BBC Studios, with Craig Armstrong as showrunner and Travis Shakespeare serving as executive producer for BBC Studios. A U.S. version of the show was previously produced for BBC America in 2017 with Antron Brown, William Fichter and Tom Ford as hosts. An earlier version, “Top Gear USA,” aired on History from 2010 to 2016.
“We’re thrilled that the U.S. fans of our global franchise will be able to continue to relish in all that is ‘Top Gear’ — excitement, fun and passion. The clear chemistry between Dax, Rob and Jethro, in combination with the challenges and car stunts – ranging from the ordinary to the extraordinary – are certain to make ‘Top Gear America’ a new fan favorite,” said Matt Forde, BBC Studios’ managing director of international production and formats.
The dawn of “Top Gear America” on Motor Trend is a sign of Discovery’s investment in original content for the streaming service, which has a different programming lineup than the linear channel of the same name (Discovery Inc.’s Velocity was rebranded Motor Trend Network in November 2018. The streaming service — which does incorporate advertising but also offers an ad-free version — has 20 new original series are on tap for next year, along with 20 returning originals, Wellen said.
“Top Gear America” episodes will be exclusive to the streaming platform although they may eventually wind up on the linear service, Wellen said.
The U.K. series has its roots in the 1970s. The series caught fire when it was relaunched in 2002 with hosts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May. That trio made the show a global phenomenon, but behind the scenes turmoil led to Clarkson getting sacked — after what the BBC described as “an unprovoked physical attack” on a “Top Gear” producer in March 2015 — which spurred Hammond and May to depart the show. In late 2016, that trio reunited for a similar series for Amazon, “The Grand Tour,” which begins its fourth season on Dec. 14.
The series order for “Top Gear America” grew out of Motor Trend’s deal with the BBC for domestic streaming rights to the “Top Gear” library. That deal, completed earlier this year, includes 170 episodes and numerous specials, as well as spinoff series including “Top Gear: Extra Gear,” “Richard Hammond’s Crash Course” and “James May’s Cars of the People.”
(Pictured: “Top Gear America’s” Jethro Bovingdon, Rob Corddry, the Stig and Dax Shepard)
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Top Gear (American TV series)
American motoring television series 2010-2016
This article is about the TV series that aired from 2010 to 2016. For the 2017 TV series, see Top Gear America. For other uses, see Top Gear (disambiguation).
Top Gear is an American motoring television series, based on the BBC series of the same name. The show's presenters were professional racing driver Tanner Foust, actor and comedian Adam Ferrara, and automotive and racing analyst Rutledge Wood. As with the original British version, the show had its own version of The Stig, an anonymous racing driver, and a celebrity guest was featured each week for the first two seasons. The show premiered on November 21, 2010, on History.
The show's first two seasons followed a similar format of the BBC version: three main hosts present, The Stig (an anonymous race driver) tests vehicles, and celebrities are invited for interviews and to drive vehicles around a test track. In addition, challenges similar in nature to the ones presented in the original show are replicated in Top Gear. The "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car" (retitled "Big Star, Small Car") segment uses a Suzuki SX4 Sportback. Filming of this segment, along with in-studio segments take place at the former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, now known as the Orange County Great Park, in Irvine, California.
Beginning in season 3, the show changed its emphasis to the hosts' stunts involving car customization, with all studio-based segments, as well as car reviews and Power Laps, discarded from the series.
During the first two seasons, Power Laps was a segment of the program in which The Stig completes a lap around the track in a reviewed car to compare its performance to previous contenders.
All laps are timed with the car's manufacturer-provided adjustable settings configured for maximum performance — all adjustable suspensions are set at their most efficient, all gear shift maps are at their most aggressive, and driving aids such as traction control are deactivated.
Power Lap Times
- 1:18.6 - Ariel Atom
- 1:19.5 - Tanner Foust's Ford Fiesta Rallycross
- 1:22.0 - Dodge Viper SRT 10 ACR
- 1:22.4 - Chevrolet Corvette C6 ZR1
- 1:22.6 - Lexus LFA
- 1:22.8 - Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera
- 1:23.3 - Ferrari 458 Italia
- 1:23.4 - Lamborghini Murciélago LP 670-4 SuperVeloce
- 1:25.3 - Porsche Panamera Turbo
- 1:26.9 - Lamborghini Gallardo LP 550-2 Balboni
- 1:27.2 - Cadillac CTS-V Sport Wagon
- 1:27.4 - Cadillac CTS-V Coupe
- 1:27.6 - Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG
- 1:28.2 - Aston Martin V12 Vantage
- 1:28.2 - Ford Mustang 302 Boss
- 1:28.4 - Lotus Evora
- 1:28.5 - Ferrari California
- 1:28.8 - Audi Rs6 2021
- 1:28.9 - Ford Mustang Roush
- 1:29.2 - Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X GSR
- 1:30.0 - Subaru Impreza WRX STI
- 1:30.0 - BMW X6 M
- 1:39.0 - Hennessey F-150 VelociRaptor 600
- 5:22.0 - Lamborghini R 485
Big Star, Small Car
During the first two seasons, Big Star, Small Car was a recurring segment on Top Gear, inspired by the "Star in reasonably priced car" on the original Top Gear. During each episode, a celebrity is interviewed by one of the three presenters. Discussion is normally amusing, and focuses on car-related matters, such as the celebrity's car history. Then the presenter and the studio audience watch the guest's fastest lap on the Top Gear test track.
The car used for this segment is a Suzuki SX4 Sportback. Each guest practices with The Stig before making several attempts to complete the test track in the fastest time. The guest does not learn their time until the interview. Practice laps, crashes and the drivers' facial expressions are also shown during the segment.
Star Lap Times
Note: (wet) means the track was wet when the lap was taken.
- 1:39.3 – Stephen Moyer
- 1:41.8 – Patrick Warburton
- 1:42.4 – Arlene Tur
- 1:43.2 – Tony Hawk
- 1:43.9 – Kid Rock (wet)
- 1:44.0 – Tim Allen
- 1:44.3 – Jon Huertas
- 1:44.3 – Bill Engvall
- 1:44.4 – Bret Michaels
- 1:45.3 – Dominic Monaghan
- 1:46.6 – Ty Burrell (wet)
- 1:46.7 – Edward Burns
- 1:48.1 – Rick Harrison
- 1:49.2 – Adam Levine
- 1:49.9 – Kal Penn
- 1:51.1 – Joe Mantegna
- 1:51.5 – Austin "Chumlee" Russell
- 1:55.2 – Steve Schirripa
- 1:55.2 – Michelle Rodriguez (wet)
- 1:55.4 – Lake Bell
- 1:55.6 – Buzz Aldrin
- 2:06.9 – Bridget Marquardt
Main article: List of Top Gear (American TV series) episodes
Top Gear on Discovery Channel
In 2005, Discovery Channel made a pilot for an American version of the show featuring actor and IHRA driver Bruno Massel, actor John Jenkinson, and actor John Littlefield as the hosts. The attempt was not picked up by the Discovery Channel. The pilot featured Iron Man director Jon Favreau as the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car, a race between Littlefield's 2005 Ford Mustang and Jenkinson's 2005 Dodge Charger R/T, and a review of the Lexus RX 400h. After the pilot proved to be unsuccessful, the Discovery Channel later began airing a slightly "Americanized" version of the British Top Gear show with presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May. This show featured clips of features and challenges from Series 1–5 from the BBC Two show with introduction segments recorded by Clarkson, Hammond and May at the Dunsfold Aerodrome studio especially for the US audience. Regular features like "The News" and "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car" were not shown on the Discovery Channel version.
Top Gear on NBC
In April 2007, the BBC was still looking to launch a locally produced version of Top Gear in the United States.NBC announced, in January 2008, that it had ordered a pilot for an American version of the show, retitled Gear.BBC Worldwide had been contracted to produce the pilot for NBC. According to NBC reality chief Craig Plestis, many automakers had shown interest in America's version of Top Gear.
On June 16, 2008, NBC and the BBC officially announced an American version of Top Gear, to be hosted by Adam Carolla, Tanner Foust and Eric Stromer. The studio segments for the pilot were taped on July 26, 2008 to generally favorable reviews citing close following of the UK version's format. NBC was expected to have Top Gear premiere as a midseason replacement in 2009.
Jay Leno, who originally turned down offers to host the show, expressed concern in 2008 over whether or not a show like Top Gear could be successful in America. In a column published by The Sunday Times in 2008, Leno expressed concern that an American version could lack the critical reviews for which the British version is known. The British show is produced for the BBC with public funds while the American show airs on commercial television. Leno believes that the show may have to worry about offending current and potential sponsors by giving their products poor reviews, leading to a compromise in the journalistic integrity and freedom of the original show.
On December 11, 2008, NBC reversed its decision to place the show as a midseason replacement, citing concerns about the potential success of a car-themed show in light of the failure of Knight Rider. NBC allowed the BBC to shop it around to cable networks to possibly pick it up. In February 2009, Jeremy Clarkson stated that the American version had been "canned", claiming that focus groups "... just don't understand a single word we're on about. They just don't get it really."
Top Gear on History
On August 6, 2010, the first Top Gear trailer was published on the web, giving fans a preview on what to expect on the upcoming episodes to be broadcast on the History Channel. In this trailer, new hosts Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust, and Rutledge Wood were seen participating in a Moonshine Challenge and Tanner Foust also takes a Dodge Viper for a test drive. The first season premiered on November 21, 2010, and as of 2014, the series has been renewed for its fifth season. Commenting on the second season renewal, UK host Jeremy Clarkson noted, "Top Gear is our baby so you can understand why Hammond, May and I were anxious about passing it on to the presenters of the US show. We needn’t have worried because Top Gear is clearly in safe hands, even if they do insist on speaking in those stupid accents. Watching an episode from series 1 with Richard and James, we found ourselves in a genuinely heated debate about which of the presenters’ cars was best. We were just three ordinary chaps watching a car show and loving it, which is exactly what Top Gear should be. Bring on series 2."
In a Facebook post on June 26, 2016, Wood stated his belief that the episode set to air the same week would be the last for the series on History.
Top Gear premiered in the US on History on November 21, 2010. On February 10, 2011, the show was renewed for a second season to premiere on November the same year. On May 11, 2012, History renewed Top Gear for a 16 episode third season, which premiered August 14, 2012. The second half of the season premiered January 29, 2013. It was renewed for a fourth season, which started filming April 30, 2013, and premiered on September 3, 2013. The fifth season premiered on June 3, 2014.Its most recent season, Season 6, began airing on April 26, 2016. On June 28, 2016, the BBC confirmed that the series had completed its contractual run on the History channel."
In the United Kingdom, the first and second seasons are broadcast on BBC Three. The first season premiered on October 14, 2011, and the second season premiered on January 13, 2012. The second season halted broadcasting on January 27, but continued its run on June 29, 2012. It is broadcast under the name Top Gear USA to avoid confusion with the original UK version.
The first season premiered on GO! in Australia on November 26, 2011 whilst season two onward aired on BBC Knowledge, a channel on Australian Pay TV service Foxtel. In Canada, it airs on BBC Canada.
In Mexico and Latinamerica the show broadcasts on History Channel Latino.
Before the show started, there was a mixed response to Top Gear being remade for a US audience. Stuart Heritage of The Guardian noted the brutal response to the first trailer of the History Channel version of the show on the Internet, with YouTube users noting History's version to be an "'insult to the actual Top Gear" among other less favorable comments. Agreeing with the commenters, Heritage notes that US television doesn't have "Jeremy Clarkson, Captain Slow and The Hamster," but noting the original BBC version isn't exactly "British" per se, and figured the show could possibly translate easily if done right.
Top Gear premiered at 1.9 million viewers in its first episode, which dropped to 1.3 million viewers after the first episode. The second-season premiere had a viewership of 2 million viewers.Metacritic collected an aggregated score of 72 for season one.
The show has received mixed reviews from numerous critics. Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter judged the show as a whole, noting, "It's a promising beginning for a show most thought would end up in a ditch." Goodman noted the shaky history of the show being brought over to the US (including Jay Leno's take on the Star in a Reasonably Price Car segment for his short-lived show) and the venom of online comments, to which Goodman replies: "Everyone gets it." Mike Hale of the New York Times had mixed reactions to the show, going from how History's version almost slavishly follows the formula the BBC version uses ("that any subject or concept can appeal to a wide audience if you find the right balance of competition and destruction (the childlike smashing of large objects) with humor, sentiment and pretty locations.") to how the show has gaps between the BBC and History Channel version. Hale had concerns the show was not translating well, as the History version lacks the "going out of the lines" aspect of the original, and the host lineup for History's version being younger and more callow than the BBC version's hosts.
John Krewson of Gawker Media, writing for Jalopnik, encouraged readers to watch the show. Watching the first three episodes of season one, he noted the first episode would be "little strange for most viewers." but towards the third episode, viewers should "have the snack tray full and an hour free," and praising the show despite its initial roughness. Chris Shunk, writing for Autoblog, was impressed with the first show, but warned readers to not compare History's version of Top Gear to the BBC version of Top Gear so easily. Also, the show would encourage Autoblog to "keep watching... at least for nine more weeks." Lee Pray of Edmunds Inside Line noted the show seems worthwhile, but while it won't match up the original BBC version, it was worth to have two versions of Top Gear around.The A.V. Club gave the show an overall rating of C, lamenting that Season One of the series ended with a clip show, and not liking host Adam Ferrara. The review compared both the BBC and History Channel versions, and claimed that History's version borrowed "the graphics, music, and editing...." of the original, but that the show felt like it was "imported from a 1980s beer commercial."
|Season 1||July 19, 2011|
|Season 2||February 19, 2013|
|Season 3||August 6, 2013|
|Season 4||December 9, 2014|
|Season 5||August 30, 2016|
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'Top Gear America' Announced, New Hosts Revealed
By Gregory Lawrence
The spinoff of the long-running British car show drops on MotorTrend 2020.
If you're a fan of cars, British programming, and all things charming, you are likely aware of Top Gear. The long-running BBC show is simple in its pleasures -- give some delightful onscreen personalities the chance to drive all kinds of dope cars in all kinds of dope terrains, and let the good times roll. Now, the good old U S of A is getting its chance to join in the automotive revelry. Top Gear America is coming to subscription streaming service MotorTrend in the spring of 2020. And as reported by the magazine-turned-network, it's found its hosts: Dax Shepard, Rob Corddry, and Jethro Bovingdon.
Shepard and Corddry are both comedic actors you likely recognize. Shepard has appeared in Parenthood and Bless This Mess. He's from the Motor City (Detroit for those uninitiated) and has loved cars his whole life: "Cars are my full-time hobby. It's the only reason I act: to acquire money to buy s--t that you put gas in." By his estimate, the man currently owns around 17 cars and trailers on his ranch, and has some surprisingly technical opinions on race tracks and car parts. Corddry, known for Childrens Hospital and Ballers, is self-admittedly less technically profound than his new co-star: "I made a choice to not get all bogged down in the details... I'm just gonna fool them for as long as I can. And then they're finally going to be like, 'Wait a minute, this guy doesn't know what he's talking about. Let's get some boring dude in here.'" Something tells me Corddry will be anything but boring on-screen. As he puts it, "If we're ever given a script, I promise the viewers that I'm going to light it on fire and throw it away."
So who is Jethro Bovingdon? If you're already a fan of MotorTrend, or of car culture in general, you may know his name. The Brit appears on several programs for the burgeoning streaming service, and is quite the racer. Or, in his words, "I love cars, I love driving cars, and I love doing stupid stuff in cars." Bovingdon spends much of his time with a litany of incredible cars on incredible tracks. But he's got some stiff racing competition -- and not just with Shepard or Corddry. Joining the trio will be the mysterious Stig, an anonymous masked racer from the original series who sets lap times and never reveals his face. But Corddry has a strategy for dealing with him: "They gonna want me to wrestle the Stig? I'll wrestle the Stig. I'll Greco-Roman wrestle the Stig."
Top Gear America will come to MotorTrend in the spring of 2020. For more on Shepard, here's our CHIPS interview with him. For more on Corddry, here's a Daily Show reunion on Stephen Colbert. And for more on those metal machines that go "vroom, vroom," here's our review of Ford v Ferrari.
Bond schmond. The villains are who we're excited to see next, and these actors deserve a shot at the role.
Read NextAbout The Author
Gregory Lawrence (aka Greg Smith) is a writer, director, performer, songwriter, and comedian. He's an associate editor for Collider and has written for Shudder, CBS, Paste Magazine, Guff, Smosh, Obsev Studios, and more. He loves pizza and the Mortal Kombat movie. For more, www.smithlgreg.com
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‘Top Gear America’ Wraps Production Ahead Of MotorTrend Launch
EXCLUSIVE: Top Gear’s latest American incarnation has safely wrapped production ahead of its debut on Discovery’s MotorTrend.
Deadline understands that the show, which is based on the long-running British format, finished filming its debut season at the end of August after shooting over the summer.
The show, which is produced by BBC Studios’ Los Angeles production division, managed this by driving off with a slew of COVID-friendly protocols.
It comes as the show was originally intended to air in the spring, having been unveiled by Discovery’s motoring streamer at the end of last year.
The show filmed primarily in remote areas in the western half of the country, and to avoid potential travel exposure from commercial flights, the series only filmed at locations that were drivable by car from Southern California.
Personnel, including hosts Dax Shepard, Rob Corddry and Jethro Bovingdon, wore face masks when not on camera and practiced social distancing while the number of crew going in and out of the vehicles was limited to essential personnel only. These vehicles were disinfected and cleaned between use.
Top Gear America is the BBC Studios format’s latest ride in the U.S. The show was originally piloted at networks including Discovery and NBC before airing on History for six seasons. BBC America also aired a version, fronted by William Fichtner, Tom Ford and Antron Brown, in 2017.
Craig Armstrong is showrunner of Top Gear America, while Travis Shakespeare is executive producer for BBC Studios and Levi Rugg is executive producer for MotorTrend.
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Cast of 'Top Gear USA' Starred the Guy With the Best Line From 'The Dark Knight'
When you've got certain chemistry, especially when it comes to long-time and beloved franchises, TV producers need to be careful not to mess with the formula. Trying to force a certain dynamic comes off as "trying too hard" and could often lead to alienating audiences, which is never a good thing. They'll revolt on you. One such example of this is the USA version of Top Gear, which, despite featuring a great cast, didn't really take off like the original U.K. program, but there's a new trio.
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Which U.S. personalities are in the 'Top Gear America' cast?
All right stop me if you've heard this one before: Top Gear America has a new cast. The high-octane, full-throttle BBC show was a ratings darling and truly one of the most entertaining reality TV programs to ever come on TV. There was something about the chemistry between Richard Hammond, James May, and Jeremy Clarkson that resonated with viewers and brought some truly hilarious moments to folks' TV screens for around 22 seasons.
Clarkson abruptly departed from the series after reportedly punching a production assistant in 2015 and calling him a "lazy Irish c---." The dispute is said to have started when Clarkson returned to his hotel after a day of filming and was informed that he couldn't have a hot meal and instead was served soup and "a cold meal platter."
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This led to Clarkson facing a disciplinary hearing with the BBC which culminated in his contract not being renewed with the series. Richard Hammond and James May stayed on to solemnly finish the episodes without Clarkson and did not return to Top Gear without Clarkson.
They ultimately ended up having their own series on Amazon Prime, The Grand Tour, which was basically a fully uncensored version of Top Gear, where they had total creative control.
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The show was a smash success for Prime and ran for four seasons before the trio of personalities called that particular program quits. They are reportedly working on other ventures, specials, and one-off productions that will see the three of them reunited. James May's Our Man in Japan is a travel docu-series that's getting a lot of love from viewers and critics alike.
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Enough about May, Hammond, and Clarkson, what about the 'Top Gear America' cast?
The U.K. version of Top Gear may have been a smash success and continues to thrive even after the "OG" trio's departure, but Top Gear America has never been so fortunate. The show's been derided by longtime fans of the series, which included iterations featuring Jay Leno, and William Fichtner. Yes, the crooked bank manager from The Dark Knight who has the greatest line in the film.
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While Top Gear America has had several seasons, they've never seem to get "the right fit" to captivate audiences. But they're hoping to lean more into comedy territory for the latest trio of Rob Corddry, Dax Shepard, and Jethro Bovingdon. Shepard's been a lifelong car nut, stating, "Cars are my full-time hobby. It's the only reason I act: to acquire money to buy s--- that you put gas in."
Shepard owns around 17 cars and trailers, but his co-star, Rob Corddry is admittedly not as technically proficient as his fellow actor: "I made a choice to not get all bogged down in the details… I’m just gonna fool them for as long as I can. And then they’re finally going to be like, ‘Wait a minute, this guy doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Let’s get some boring dude in here.'"
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All of the technical know-how can be handled, probably, by Bovingdon, who's no stranger to voicing his opinions on all things automobiles for MotorTrend. He's also a pretty darn good driver, too.
The new Top Gear America has apparently wrapped production, but only has a single pilot episode with the new crew that's ever aired, according to IMDb.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the travel-intensive nature of the show, filming for the series was temporarily disabled but new episodes of the America variety should be available sooner than later. If you do have a MotorTrend subscription, however, you could sign up for the service and watch all of the previous U.K. versions of the series.
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She was wearing black clothes, like the drivers of a caravan. She slipped her hand under the black cloth and found that no one had encroached on her European clothes. Only the chest was tightly rewound with a black rag over the shirt. She stretched out on the mat with relief and fell asleep again.