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[01/06/10 - 01:11 PM]
Top Gear's All New U.S. Premiere Has the Hosts Off to the Races and Jay Leno Behind the Wheel
Seasons 13 and 14 will air consecutively beginning Monday, January 25 at 8:00/7:00c.

[via press release from BBC America]

TOP GEAR'S ALL NEW U.S. PREMIERE HAS THE HOSTS OFF TO THE RACES AND JAY LENO BEHIND THE WHEEL

- Two new seasons premiere in the U.S. on BBC AMERICA -

Hosts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May are off to the races in two back-to-back U.S. premiere seasons of BBC AMERICA's International Emmy-winning car show, Top Gear. The hosts enter a terrifying French ice race in low cost rear-wheel-drive coup�s, Richard and James challenge the logistical might of Britain's mail service by racing the new Porsche Panamera versus a stamped envelope across the British Isles, and Richard stages the world's first-ever race between the 1000 horsepower Bugatti Veyron, McLaren F1 and Lamborghini Murcielago SV in Abu Dhabi. Also this season, car enthusiast and talk show host Jay Leno is put to the test on the Top Gear test track. Top Gear Season 13 premieres Monday, January 25, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Season 14 will air directly after Season 13, premiering Monday, March 15, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.

In the premiere, Jeremy, Richard and James set out to discover what Top Gear might have been like 60 years ago. In a race from London to Edinburgh, James drives an old Jaguar XK120 sports car, Richard rides a Vincent Black Shadow motorbike and Jeremy jumps on board the Tornado, a brand-new Peppercorn A1 Pacific Class steam locomotive built to the original blueprints used to create some of Britain's finest locomotives back in the heyday of the railways. Then in a television-first, Top Gear's silent and mysterious racing driver the Stig takes off his helmet to reveal just who he really is�

The ongoing hit original "Star in the Reasonably Priced Car" segment continues with the Stig putting the rich and famous through their paces on the Top Gear test track. Getting behind the wheel this season are Jay Leno, who's since adopted a similar challenge on his primetime show, Olympic Gold sprinter Usain Bolt, Stephen Fry, actress Sienna Miller and AC/DC's singer Brian Johnson.

The new season features Jeremy and James attempting to understand what makes a great Volkswagen commercial - and then trying to shoot one of their own. James travels to America to spend a day with stunt-driving legend Ken Block and Jeremy gets chased by the British Army in some of its latest and most deadly toys.

Top Gear Season 12 was number 6 on the best-selling TV (Seasons) list for iTunes in 2009. Top Gear Season 13 episodes will be available on iTunes 24 hours after its premiere on BBC AMERICA. Also online, BBCAmerica.com has launched a new Top Gear Soundboard featuring some of the best Top Gear sound bites.

Only days before Season 13's premiere, DVD releases Top Gear 11 and Top Gear 12, arrive to stores on Tuesday, January 12. Top Gear 12 is also stocked with bonus material ranging from exclusive commentary on the Vietnam special, the Botswana special director's cut with commentary, deleted scenes, photo galleries and more.

One of the most successful and interesting phenomenon's on UK television, Top Gear defies traditional notions of programming genre and has become a global phenomenon reaching 150 million homes worldwide. Part factual and part entertainment, the award winning car show doesn't fit into any standard category.

BBC AMERICA brings audiences a new generation of award-winning television featuring news with a uniquely global perspective, provocative dramas, razor-sharp comedies, life-changing makeovers and a whole new world of nonfiction. BBC AMERICA pushes the boundaries to deliver high quality, highly addictive and eminently watchable programming to viewers who demand more. It is available on digital cable and satellite TV in more than 65 million homes.

CAST AND PRODUCTION CREDITS

Presenters

Jeremy Clarkson (Clarkson, Speed, Jeremy Clarkson: Greatest Raid of All Time)

Richard Hammond (Blast Lab, Engineering Connections, Petrolheads)

James May (James May on the Moon, James May at the Edge of Space, Top Toys)

Director Brian Klein (Clarkson)

Executive Producer Andy Wilman (Jeremy Clarkson: Greatest Raid of All Time, Speed)

EPISODE SYNOPSES

Episode One

The new season hits the road running with an extraordinary race as Jeremy, Richard and James set out to discover what Top Gear might have been like 60 years ago. To this end, James grabs himself a gorgeous old Jaguar XK120 sports car, while Richard chooses to torture himself on the brutal but rather fantastically named Vincent Black Shadow motorbike. Meanwhile, in an almost unprecedented move, Jeremy decides to take the train. But not just any old train - he is on the footplate of the Tornado, a brand-new Peppercorn A1 Pacific Class steam locomotive built to the original blueprints used to create some of Britain's finest locomotives back in the heyday of the railways. Jeremy has to feed the boiler with a constant supply of coal, without which the whole train will grind to a halt. The challenge behind this race is simple � the first one to get from London to Edinburgh is the winner � but what happens along the way adds up to one of Top Gear's most incredible and epic races to date. Formula One racing driver Michael Schumacher has a surprise revelation and is interviewed by Jeremy before doing a lap to power test the Ferrari FXX.

Episode One premieres Monday, January 25, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Two

Jeremy, Richard and James attempt to find the perfect car for 17-year-olds, negotiating insurance companies, accident repairs and a very muddy music festival parking lot in the process. (Richard buys a Hyundai S Coup�, James buys a Volkswagen Golf and Jeremy buys a Volvo Estate.) Plus, Richard goes to Abu Dhabi to test the new Lamborghini Murcielago SV and stages the world's first-ever race between the 1000 horsepower Bugatti Veyron and the mighty McLaren F1. Back in the studio, the Star in a Reasonably Priced Car is English actor, writer, comedian, author, presenter and director Stephen Fry.

Episode Two premieres Monday, February 1, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Three

Jeremy tests the mildly insane Mercedes SL Black on the track. Jeremy, Richard and James confront the credit crunch head-on as they attempt to find three sensibly priced small cars that will not make you miserable. James travels to America to spend a day with stunt-driving legend Ken Block and English stand-up comedian Michael McIntyre is the "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car."

Episode Three premieres Monday, February 8, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Four

Jeremy gets chased by the British Army in some of their latest and most deadly toys. Meanwhile, Richard and James compare the new Porsche Panamera against a small envelope, a postage stamp and the logistical might of the Royal Mail in a race from one end of the British Isles to the other. Plus, Olympic Gold Medal-winning sprinter Usain Bolt is the "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car."

Episode Four premieres Monday, February 15, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Five

Jeremy, Richard and James seek petrol head heaven in three low cost rear-wheel-drive coup�s and somehow find themselves entered in a terrifying French ice race. Jeremy reviews the Jaguar XFR, and award-winning actress Sienna Miller is the "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car."

Episode Five premieres Monday, February 22, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Six

Jeremy, Richard and James immerse themselves in the world of classic cars to find out if they really are, as the geeks claim, more fun than modern machinery. Setting out in pre-1982 cars they picked up at an auction, the trio are in Majorca to take part in one very big challenge - a seemingly unfathomable classic car rally. Also, Jeremy drives with dinosaurs in the new BMW Z4, and interviews rock god Brian Johnson (lead singer of AC/DC) in the studio.

Episode Six premieres Monday, March 1, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Episode Seven

Jeremy and James unleash the fateful Top Gear mantra ("How hard can it be?") on car commercials as they're set the task of creating a memorable one for Volkswagen. Despite vowing to work together to deliver a classic piece of advertising, the boys quickly fall out on set, as James tries to fill every second of airtime with immensely complicated information about fuel economy, while Jeremy just wants everything to explode. Jay Leno is the "Star in a Reasonably Priced Car." Out on the track, Richard looks for an alternative to boring Germanic sports saloons and discovers the HSV Maloo R8, while Clarkson reviews the Aston Martin V12 Vantage.

Episode Seven premieres Monday, March 8, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT

Season 14 premieres Monday, March 15, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Further details will be issued nearer to the premiere date.





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· TOP GEAR (BBC AMERICA)





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