Top Gear, top rumours

swYesterday a rumour on 3AW suggested that Top Gear Australia could be moving from SBS to Channel Nine -with Shane Warne as host no less.

The local version has had two seasons on SBS with Steve Pizzati, Warren Brown and this year joined by James Morrison.

The show is enormously expensive for the public broadcaster, and while it doesn’t pull the same figures of the UK original, it remains the network’s most popular local production, averaging around 600,000 viewers.

By moving to Nine the show would be under the PBL Media banner, which currently has publishing rights to the Top Gear magazine brand.

Yesterday, TV Tonight put some of the questions to the very coy players in the equation.

SBS has been in discussions with BBC about a third season for some months. Yesterday it had no further news on the state of play.

A spokesperson for BBC Worldwide simply said, “I can confirm that BBC Worldwide is in discussions about the future of Top Gear, but can’t comment further while any negotiations with anyone are ongoing.”

If and when a third series is approved it would likely continue to be produced by Freehand Productions, which is part-owned by the BBC, although even that is yet to be confirmed too.


  1. When a show on ABC or SBS becomes somewhat popular, commercial networks want to buy the rights for it. But it fails. Think Kath & Kim. Leave it on SBS please.

  2. Hahaha, that is hilarious.Yeah, move that heap of crap TGA to NumbnutsNine, put the Lord of the Bogans in charge, watch the show fail and fall on its ass. That’s entertainment!

  3. Herald Sun reports tonight that a new agreement between Nine and BBC Worldwide is likely to be completed within days, quoting a network source. The paper also suggests that Warne will host six episodes.

  4. Whether it’s the British or Australian versions, I still can’t tell the difference between Top Gear & The Footy Show. They’re all just male pi**ing contests anyway… Top Gear Australia – ‘Welcome Home’ To Bogan Nine!

  5. I know it’s popular to bag TGA, but I kinda thought they were doing OK towards the end of last series, and though Morrison as host was decent.

    Can’t imagine what scary things Nine would do to it, just as it seems to be finding its feet.

  6. Shane Warne would be good for it because SBS hasn’t got TG Aus right yet and, unlike TG Aust hosts past and present, he actually has a personality………… !

    TG Aus on SBS is a crock now so realistically 9 couldn’t hurt it !

  7. @Clint
    no they don’t want to ruin it, they simply want to make it worse than it already is…and here we all were thinking that that would be impossible…
    as long as SBS keeps the original who cares what they do with the mistake-sorry i mean the Australian version.
    i personally find it funny that nine are trying to get a show that averages 600 000 (well i guess thats on par with most of its local realities)

  8. Oh dear.

    Well, if Nine wants even more ridicule, that’s how you do it. A bogan cricketer, a network without any idea of what its audience wants, and a show that does not – not! – need to be redone in lesser countries than its home.

    Top Gear will not work outside of its original incarnation. When will the money men realise that Top Gear = Clarkson, Hammond, May?

    There is no substitute. I mean, they wouldn’t remake Fawlty Towers in America, now, would they? Oh, hang on…

  9. geez, that would be quite a move! dont know if I could imagine Top Gear on a proper commercial channel, Ford, Holden, Toyota etc are fairly large advertisers on commercial tv, its difficult to see them taking very kindly if one fo the hosts had reason to slag off one of their cars, similarly, its difficult to see the hosts slagging off those cars if they knew the networks advertising reveue was at stake. I believe that issue was part of the reason that NBC in the US decided at the 11th hour to pass on making a local version there.

  10. Bereft Skerrick

    No no no no no. Don’t let the network put That kind of spin on this!

    Talented cricketer, yes. But Warne Brand = Fail. Ordinary cricket commentator, and evern worse actor/presenter (those Advanced Hair yeah yeah ads should be a warning).

    But since many think that fast expensive sports cars are for balding middle aged yobbos…

  11. Nooooooooooooo!

    Please God NO! if TGA moves to Nine I will not watch, if Shane Warne is the Host I will burn my TG DVDs! (If I has any) Okay I’ll make DVDs of the shows I’ve recorded and burn them!!!

    Is Nine/PBL going to let them bag cars/sponsors on national TV? the show wold not be the same on commercial TV.

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