Top Gear with Chris Evans hits new ratings low with 2.37m viewers watching

The rebooted BBC2 show has now lost nearly half its audience in its third episode against strong competition from Euro 2016 and Coronation Street

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Chris Evans’ Top Gear reboot shed more viewers last night with 2.37 million people watching the hour-long programme on BBC2, according to overnight ratings.

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These figures will climb once catch-up viewers are taken into consideration, although they reveal a further drop on last week’s audience of 2.8 million.

The opening episode pulled in 4.4 million viewers, meaning that last night’s episode represented a 45% fall at the half-way point of the six episode run.

Last night the motoring show featured an edition in which Matt LeBlanc engaged in a high speed tour of London in the “Hoonicorn”, a suped-up Ford Mustang. The filming of these scenes drew controversy earlier this year after the car was photographed performing stunts close to the Cenotaph war memorial, although the monument did not feature in last night’s show.

Top Gear was competing with the Germany v Ukraine Euro 2016 match on BBC1, which kicked off at 8pm. Over the course of the whole broadcast from 7.35pm to 10.05pm the match averaged 6.3m viewers.

Top Gear also lost out to Coronation Street on ITV, which averaged 4.8 million viewers from 7.30pm-8.30pm on ITV plus another 933,000 on ITV HD. The Weatherfield soap averaged 4.7m viewers in the half hour it was against Top Gear between 8pm and 8.30pm on the ITV channel, with a further 940,000 watching on ITV HD during this period.

Top Gear’s audience share is also down. Last night’s show had an audience share of 10.4% compared with 14% for episode two and 21.2% for episode one. The Germany match by contrast drew 28.5% of the TV-watching audience.

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A repeat of ITV drama Vera following Coronation Street also proved too strong for Top Gear, averaging 2.9m in its first half hour on ITV against Top Gear, and 500,000 viewers on ITV HD over the same period.

Chris Evans is right about ratings – but that doesn’t mean Top Gear is a triumph

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