SBS loses Top Gear to Nine

SBS has lost one of its biggest audience-generating shows with the move of Top Gear to Nine.

Both the British version of the motoring entertainment show – starring Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond – and the rights to the Australian edition will shift to Nine from early next year.

Top Gear Australia Magazine already sits within the PBL empire as a joint venture between ACP and BBC Worldwide.

Julie Dowding, BBC Worldwide Australia’s sales director said:  “This country is Top Gear’s biggest territory outside the UK. We greatly look forward to developing its potential with a long-standing partner like Nine.”

David Gyngell , CEO of the Nine Network, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be working together with one of the world’s great broadcasting powerhouses on a program of this quality and wide appeal.”

Although Nine has not said anything about the existing SBS cast of Top Gear Australia, it seems likely that the network would look first to its own stable of talent. The Footy Show’s Sam Newman, Getaway’s Jules Lund and swimmer Grant Hackett – one year into a four year deal with Nine – are all known for their love of cars.

Although SBS’s local version of Top Gear failed to outrate the original, it was the network’s highest rating locally produced show.


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