- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 16, 2015

LONDON (AP) - The BBC says its hit automotive TV show “Top Gear” will return to the airwaves with a new host replacing scandal-tainted Jeremy Clarkson.

The broadcaster says radio and TV personality Chris Evans has signed a three-year deal to lead a new lineup for the show, which has won a huge following with its mix of car tips, driving stunts and jokey banter.

Clarkson was fired in March after he punched a producer during an off-set altercation. The show’s two other hosts also left.

The incident threatened the future of one of BBC’s most popular shows - and biggest international earners. Clarkson’s brash, blokey persona was a large part of “Top Gear’s” appeal to fans.

Evans said Tuesday he was thrilled to be hosting “my favorite program of all time.”

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