Brakes put on Top Gear Australia
OFFICIALLY it's parked but the local version of motoring show Top Gear is headed for the scrapheap.
Channel Nine has reportedly finally put the show out of its misery today after two years of lacklustre ratings and a cool reception by the critics. After originally attracting 1.5 million viewers last season the new series has dropped to around the 400,000 mark in the past two weeks.
Host Steve Pizzati confirmed the news this morning on his Twitter feed.
"It's true - as of next week, TGA will be on at the special time of not at all. Sorry to the open-minded people that gave it a go and enjoyed!" Pizzati tweeted.
"We're told the last three episodes will make an appearance in the summer. Or try Blockbuster Video in the BetaMax section."
Rumours had been growing in the industry that the show's future was in doubt. Nine only commissioned four episodes of the current season. Only three have aired so far but a Nine spokeswoman said the final episode would be shown later this year.
The spokeswoman couldn't confirm if the show would continue next year saying a decision hadn't been made yet.
The final episode of last year's series also failed to air despite being filmed and promoted.
The local version of the popular British show began on SBS in 2008 with hosts Pizzati, Charlie Cox and Warren Brown. The first season came under fire from the car industry with a number of manufacturers complaining about damage done to their vehicles during filming.
SBS produced a second season, replacing Cox with musician James Morrison, before Nine secured the rights both versions of the show in 2010.
Nine dropped both Morrison and Brown and replaced them with actor Shane Jacobson and journalist Ewen Page.