So Chris Evans has signed a three-year deal to present Top Gear.
Should fans of the show be celebrating tonight? Or just the Ferrari PR team, given Evans’s famed love of all cars bearing the Prancing Horse?
I must confess I’m still scarred by Evans' insistence, while writing a car review for a national newspaper last year, that the Toyota Aygo was “appalling” and then just a few weeks later calling the Peugeot 108 - a car that's nearly identical in all but styling - “scrumptious”.
But tonight I'm reminding myself - repeatedly - that to use that as evidence to suggest he knows nothing about cars would be wrong. As fans will know, Evans has spent a large fortune buying up cars over the years, notably Ferraris and, even more notably, record-breakingly expensive ones.
He also makes a point of using his cars, both by handing them over for people to drive for charitable purposes and because he loves them. I won’t be the first car hack tonight to claim to know someone who knows someone who knows Evans, and the word is that he spends more time lusting after great cars than almost anyone else on the planet, and that he delights in making sure they’re all driven, rather than stored as investments.
What’s more, if you see him at Goodwood, the British Grand Prix, or Car Fest, you’ll soon realise that the infectious enthusiasm that has long been his trademark is off the Richter Scale when he’s surrounded by his four-wheeled friends.
So much though his 108/Aygo confusion grates, all the signs are that he’s a car guy through and through - at least as far as the top end of the market is concerned. For fans of Top Gear, that must be a good thing, even if it doesn’t guarantee success in his new career.
In truth, it’s what happens next that really matters. Given the BBC revealed tonight that filming of the new Top Gear will start within weeks, it’s fair to assume that there will be a drip-feed of details on Evans’ co-presenters, although it's also interesting to note that they've already broken the 'three musketeer' format by announcing Evans alone. The chemistry between these presenters will be critical. So will Evans’s commitment to the cause; a famous workaholic he may be, but combining Radio 2 duty with Top Gear and more is a huge task. And then there’s the format: Evans and his paymasters must surely know that doing the same as what went before is a one-way ticket to paling in comparison.
Today's announcement is but a small step for the rebuilding of Top Gear. For now, though, we should enjoy the speculation and anticipate the end result.
I’m not certain that it’ll be good, but I am sure that today’s appointment guarantees that I’ll be tuning in to find out.
Related news: Ex-Top Gear team sign a deal with Amazon Video