"Top Gear" to launch U.S. version in fall

Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:16am EDT
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By James Hibberd

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - "Top Gear" is crossing the pond.

History is teaming with the BBC to launch a U.S. version of the automotive series in the fall. The network has made a 10-episode commitment to "Gear," which showcases car customization, stunts, reviews and auto-centric celebrity interviews.

History's "Gear" will be hosted by comedian and "Rescue Me" co-star Adam Ferrara, stunt driver Tanner Foust and racing analyst Rutledge Wood.

"The history of the automobile and the history of America are intimately intertwined -- to celebrate one is to celebrate the other," History president and GM Nancy Dubuc said. "We'll stay true to the original format and add a sense of the American car culture."

"Gear" fits the History brand even better than one might expect. The first program to air on what then was called the History Channel was "Automobiles: Corvette." Car-related content has performed well on the channel; History had several auto-related pilots in the works when it got "Gear."

The British version premiered in 1977, and was relaunched in 2002 as a studio-based format. It is BBC 2's most-watched program, and the brand has spun off a magazine and road tour. NBC came close to doing a U.S. version in 2008.