Top Gear season 25 – Will it finally break the mould?

Top Gear’s revamped season 24, after the departing trio of Clarkson, Hammond and May, was a commercial flop. But after a prominent presenter shakeup, can BBC Top Gear regain its mojo?

The latest series will begin on the 5th of March at 8pm on BBC2 and BBC2 HD as part of an all new 7 part series with Leblanc, Harris and Reid at the helm as the 3 main presenters.

Note that last season’s big mouthed lead presenter -Chris Evans-  is missing from that list. After a dismal streak of poor ratings and dwindling viewing figures Evans chose to leave the show a matter of hours after the final episode airing.

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But there is still hope for the hit BBC sitcom. The highly anticipated Grand Tour with Clarkson and co left many fans disappointed. 4k and beautiful filming gave Amazons new show a glossy, big budget feel. But cheap laughs and edgy stunts appear more prominently than genuine content for the real car enthusiast.

It’s here Top gear could gain ground. A well filmed, less comical proper motoring show still has its place on TV screens. The last series of top gear with the all new cast made the mistake of trying to copy the ‘3 blokes twating about’ formula that made the show so famous. This is where the prospect of having Mr Harris – the man behind ‘Chris Harris On Cars’- making full length feature films as a lead presenter with a proper BBC budget is highly exciting.

So what can we expect in the latest series. Highlights for the upcoming series include Matt Leblanc taking the Russian build eight-wheeled Avtoros Shaman to the Isle of Man and encountering a bunch of nudists. Rory Reid also challenges Chris Harris to perform a real life stunt normally only completed with CGI in an Alfa Romeo Giulia quadrifoglio. And finally Rory and Sabine Schmitz Take the fastest FWD hot hatch, The VW golf GTI Clubsport S, to the Nurburgring with the challenge to overtake as many supercars as possible during one lap of the Nordschleife.

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Here’s a list of the confirmed featured cars in all new BBC top gear:

Porsche 718 Cayman

Porsche 991 Turbo S Cabriolet

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrafoglio

Aston Martin DB11

Mercedes S63 AMG

Ferrari FXX K

Lamborghini Huracan Spyder

VW Golf Clubsport S

Renault Twingo GT

Abarth 124 Spider

Avtoros Shaman

To add further delight the somewhat cringe worthy ‘Star in a Rally Cross car’ segment has been replaced with the proper full tarmac lap, but this time with a Toyota GT86 acting as the celebrity track car. This may actually make the celebrity interview segment interesting as the stars will be at the wheel of a RWD, tail happy sports car. Expect more action on track. All 3 presenters will alternate between interviewing duties.

Top Gear Extra Gear will also continue under Rory Reid and Chris Harris. However this will likely remain on BBC 3 online.

image source: top gear.com

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2 thoughts on “Top Gear season 25 – Will it finally break the mould?

  1. I cant totally agree with your views on Top Gear and Grand Tour. You write about Top Gear “A well filmed, less comical”
    The Ferrari FXXK is the worst filming I have seen in a proper car show for the last 10 years. It looks like they filmed it with a GoPro. The opening scene in the garage has a few regular fluorescent lights that shine barely on the car and when the cars is going around on the speedring they cant keep it in the picture and zoom like 20x in so you can really see the digital zoom (and the car is still less then a third of the picture).
    No way this can be done by the same filmcrew as in the previous years.

    I agree with you on the part of less comical, there wasn’t indeed any humor on the episode. May I ask if you have seen Top Gear USA or Australia? It doesn’t work when it’s not funny. Top Gear was never about a real car review series, for the last 15 years it has been about super-cars, amazing scenery and funny car humor.

    Rotten Tomatous audience score Top Gear last season 6%, Grand Tour first season 95%.

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  2. Thanks for your comment.I agree with a lot of your points, The FXX K film was over edited with hardly any wide angle shots- they didn’t really illustrate the vastness and spectacle of Daytona. I actually appreciated the onboard footage the most.

    I guess we’ll see where the series goes, I really like the Neil Carey edited stuff on the Top Gear website -‘Chris Harris drives’- and yes, the humour is a little dry. But at least they aren’t trying to mimic Clarkson and co’s presenting style like Evans did.

    However I do think Leblanc, Harris and Reid possess a good level of interaction, it wasn’t utterly cringeworthy like before and the last time I checked twitter/ Pistionheads etc the new series is off to a reasonable start.

    The Grand Tour is very much an escalated version of ‘Clarkson era’Top Gear, It’s properly amusing and many jokes left me in stitches (apart from Hammond’s ice cream joke of course). The BBC can’t meaningfully allow Amazon’s level of unedited language on a prime time Sunday TV slot, so Top Gear will now be a little more muted.- So a more techy and less edgy show is probably what we’ll get…

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