After weeks of speculation the BBC has finally revealed their new Top Gear host. And (drumroll!) it’s Chris Evans.
It’s been confirmed that the radio and television presenter has signed a three-year deal to lead an all-new line-up of presenters for the popular BBC Two show.
And here’s what the 49-year-old had to say as soon as the news broke.
First tweet as new Top Gear host. I would like to say Jeremy, Richard & James are the greatest. And NO I’m not leaving the R2 Breakfast Show
— Chris Evans (@achrisevans) June 16, 2015
So he’s not giving up his old job just yet.
Only a week ago, Chris revealed that he was making a ‘secret’ Top Gear show on Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch, saying: “We’re making a Top Gear – we’re doing a Top Gear sequence with an independent production company and we’re going to see how it goes.”
On Tuesday, Chris said in a statement published by the BBC: “I’m thrilled, Top Gear is my favourite programme of all time.
“Created by a host of brilliant minds who love cars and understand how to make the massively complicated come across as fun, devil-may-care and effortless.
“When in fact of course, it’s anything but and that’s the genius of Top Gear’s global success.
With wife Natasha (Ian West/PA)
“I promise I will do everything I possibly can to respect what has gone on before and take the show forward.”
All this seems a massive U-turn, considering he had previously repeatedly ruled himself out of the job.
Re @SkyNews Top Gear debate. I can categorically say I am not and will NEVER be running for office. Pls discount my candidacy. .
— Chris Evans (@achrisevans) March 11, 2015
Although we can’t help wonder what made him change his mind.
Meanwhile, Jeremy Clarkson will drive off into the sunset later this month when his final appearance on Top Gear is screened on BBC Two, in a one-off 75 minute show on June 28.
Viewers will see Jeremy and co-hosts Richard Hammond and James May behind the wheel of classic cars and beaten-up 4x4s in their final challenges as a trio.
Richard Hammond, Jeremy Clarkson and James May (Liam McBurney/PA)
So does the ‘all-new line-up’ mean Richard and James won’t be joining Chris on the show, after it was reported the pair were offered deals in the region of £1 million a year to stay with it?
Twitter, of course, has gone overdrive since the news was announced with Katie Hopkins revealing she’s still Team Jeremy.
— Katie Hopkins (@KTHopkins) June 16, 2015
And some Top Gear traditionalists are sharing the same view.
— Colin Dixon (@colin_dixon1981) June 16, 2015
Top Gear isn’t top gear without Jeremy, James and Richard.
— layla (@sassyultron) June 16, 2015
Top Gear had already died. Now it has had its funeral and cremation. It will never be the same.
— Henry | #ForzaJules (@hennerzkelsall) June 16, 2015
Top Gear has just been downgraded to Flop Gear.
— Prince Charles (@Charles_HRH) June 16, 2015
Although some are actually quite excited about the new changes and have been congratulating Chris on Twitter.
— sara cox (@sarajcox) June 16, 2015
— Tommy Sandhu (@TommySandhu) June 16, 2015
@achrisevans Good luck with it – and the inevitable army of haters. New TG show needs complete revamp and suspect you’re the bloke to do it
— Richard Meaden (@DickieMeaden) June 16, 2015