MotorWeek is an American half-hour automotive television series. The program premiered on October 15, 1981 and is hosted by automotive journalist John H. Davis, who is also the series’ creator and executive producer. MotorWeek is produced by Maryland Public Television and is seen nationwide on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), Discovery Network, Velocity, V-me and internationally on the American Forces Network.
|Created by||John H. Davis|
|Starring||John H. Davis|
Joyce Braga (past)
Elizabeth A. Nardone (past)
Charlotte Nichols (past)
Craig Singhaus (past)
Lisa Barrow (past)
Jennifer Khasnabis (past)
Anquionette Crosby (past)
Jessica Choksey (past)
Henry Kopacz (past)
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||38|
|Executive producer(s)||John H. Davis|
|Production location(s)||Owings Mills, Maryland|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Original network||Maryland Public Television (PBS)|
|Picture format||480i SDTV (1981-2008)|
1080i HDTV (2009-present)
|Original release||October 15, 1981 –|
The half-hour program is presented in a magazine style format, with reviews, comparisons, news, and features. MotorWeek's original slogan was "Television's automotive magazine", later changed to "Television's original automotive magazine", although the BBC's Top Gear debuted in 1977. The show went into national syndication beginning September 11, 1993, originally syndicated by ITC Entertainment.
Each year, MotorWeek puts more than 150 new cars, trucks, and SUVs to the test, providing consumer-oriented vehicle reviews. Its video Road Test segments focus on performance, technology, practicality and dollar value, and feature MotorWeek's exclusive energy efficient rating system which compares each vehicle’s fuel economy to the best-rated vehicle in its class.
The MotorWeek team includes master technician Pat Goss who brings viewers practical advice for keeping cars on the road and out of the shop. Reporters Yolanda Vazquez and Zach Maskell present timely reports on consumer trends, safety issues and the environment, along with innovative, offbeat stories on the automotive world gone extreme.
Beginning in 1983, MotorWeek launched its Drivers’ Choice Awards which are among the auto industry’s most prestigious honors. The Drivers’ Choice Awards are unique for their consumer focus and represent the definitive list of best automotive picks in the most popular vehicle categories, including the coveted “Best of the Year” award. They are presented annually during the Chicago Auto Show.
- Road Test: Featuring a road test of new vehicles.
- Goss' Garage: Automotive maintenance segment by Pat Goss.
- Quick Spin: Quick reviews of new vehicles.
- Car of the Week: Featuring a photo album of automobiles sent in by viewers.
- Stomp, Stay, and Steer: In this segment, John Davis teaches viewers on how to stomp, stay, and steer.
- A Quick Look: Featuring a quick look at new vehicles.
- Long Term Test Update: News on cars loaned to MotorWeek for tests.
- MotorNews (formerly What's New on Wheels): Featuring an in-depth report on new vehicles.
- Over The Edge: Featuring the automotive industry on overdrive.
- FYI: Features an in-depth report on consumer trending.
- Retro Review: A look back at MotorWeek reviews from past seasons.
- Eye Spy: Featuring photographic closeups of automobiles.
- Taking the High Road: Featuring automobiles from the past and present.
From the show's premiere in 1981 until 1987, MotorWeek's original theme music was composed by Don Barto. Beginning with the 1987-88 season, Mark Roumelis took over as music composer.
During the first six seasons of MotorWeek, the set looks like a styling studio with cars, drafting tools, and paraphernalia on the wall was used from 1981 to 1987. Beginning with the 1987-88 season, MotorWeek began taping outdoors rather than in a studio.