Top Gear China unveils hosts, aims to ‘mirror the UK show’s irreverent humour’

The world’s most popular factual entertainment show, Top Gear, is to debut a local version in China in November.

Top Gear China

Top Gear China presenters Richie Jen, Cheng Lei and Tian Liang

The show, a collaboration between BBC Worldwide and production partner Honyee Media, is to be fronted by pop star turned car racer Richie Jen, Chinese Idol presenter Cheng Lei and former Olympic driver Tian Liang.

British newspaper The Guardian wrote about the presenters: “As [Jeremy] Clarkson [the host of the British version of the show] himself might say, if the sleek, polished Chinese trio were a car they would be a Jaguar F-type. Whereas by comparison, the British trio look more like an Audi Quattro from the 1980s.”

BBC Worldwide has said that Top Gear China “will mirror the UK show’s irreverent humour, presenter camaraderie, epic races, outrageous stunts and challenges, unique celebrity guest participation, and its often eccentric methods of testing cars”.

Top Gear China will premiere in early November on satellite broadcaster Shanghai Dragon TV and on, China’s most popular online video portal.

The unveiling comes just over two months after Clarkson fell foul of British media regulator Ofcom for making a racist slur on the show, referring to an Asia man whom he spotted during the filming of an episode in Myanmar as a “slope”. The show ran across Asia with the controversial segment edited out.


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