Pretty much since the currently airing Top Gear reboot started coming together, things haven't been going well behind the scenes, but at least that show has a future set in stone for the time being. The same cannot be said for the U.S. version of the vehicle-championing series, though, as History has decided to drain the gas tank and cancel Top Gear USA as Season 6 comes to a close. But there may still be hope for the future.
Top Gear USA is/was hosted by comedian/actor Adam Ferrara, driver Tanner Faust and racing analyst Rutledge Wood, and it's the latter that announced the cancellation news on his Facebook page. Thankfully for all involved, there doesn't appear to be any bad blood flowing over the decision, and the network's slight explanation just said the decision was made to not order up any new seasons of the show. Both Rutledge and BBC Worldwide North America gave History respectful props in their statements, as well. Here's how Wood put it.
I'm very sad to say, but Tuesday night's ?#?TopGear? on HISTORY is the last TG US that we have shot for you. I'm not saying Top Gear on HISTORYis done, but it's done for the immediate future on @History. I remember the day that I got the phone call to ask if I'd be interested in talking to one of the producers about possibly being one of the hosts of the US's version of the world's most iconic car show. It's been an amazing ride for sure, and although I don't think the show is done, it appears that it's done with our friends at History, and we're incredibly grateful for being a part of the A&E Networks family.
History's disinterest in seeing the show move forward is in no way a confirmation that Top Gear USA has driven off the airwaves for good, as Wood implied. BBC Worldwide is shopping around to find a new home for the series, according to Deadline, so there's a decent chance that we'll get to watch Ferrara, Faust and Wood hurtling down highways in the future. I mean, it's not like there's a lack of subject matter for the guys to delve into, given how global the fascination with automobiles is.
The first network that would seem like an obvious choice for Top Gear USA would be BBC America, where viewers can also find the updated version and its batch of new hosts. And if things are going as badly for that program as they're being presented, with one host threatening to quit unless big changes are made, then BBC America might not even have the flagship series to air in the near future. Of course, a show like Top Gear USA would also fit nicely on other male-targeted networks like Spike and Esquire, or maybe even a more sports-oriented channel like ESPN or Fox Sports 1 would rev their engines with interest.
Strangely enough, everything seems to be going peachy keen with former Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson and his cohorts, who are busy at work on their expensive-as-hell Amazon show The Grand Tour, which is set to premiere later this year. Knowing Clarkson, there are bound to be some controversial incidents coming in the future, but it's rather interesting that both sides of the pond are having Top Gear issues while he's sitting pretty.
The final episode of Top Gear USA Season 6 will air tonight, June 28, on History. We'll keep an ear to the road for news about the show's potential future over the next few weeks.