There are more car shows on TV than ever, but where’s the diversity?
It’s a golden era for motoring on TV at the moment.
And whilst there aren’t really any actual televised car reviews that would be of any help to consumers and car buyers (as I’ve previously discussed), there are tons of entertaining new and classic car shows on the box from Top Gear to Car SOS, mostly all brilliant stuff. And that’s not even counting the multitude of additional motoring shows on YouTube and other streaming channels.
So that’s all utterly brilliant and kinda reassuring as we stand on the precipice of extinction that the car potentially faces, demonised, as it constantly is, by the nouveau-veganarian.
However there is as an element of 21st century enlightened PC-ism that is woefully lacking I feel. Over 30 years ago in the UK, I was invariably one of the very few ‘BrownCarGuys’ at motoring events (car shows, meets, motor racing circuits, classic car events etc). Thankfully that’s no longer the case and I’d put the black and Asian presence at 15% minimum at such events these days.
However I can’t say the same for automotive TV content or, for that matter, streaming content either (in fact I’d say it’s worst!). In the early 2000s, there was Kevin Haggarthy – a pioneer in the field of black motoring journalism.
Today you have Rory Reid, or rather you don’t, not anymore really as he’s ex-Top Gear effectively. There was Elo on Modern Wheels or Classic Steals, but he moved to the States. Then I’ll include Fuzz Townshend of Car SOS and… is Chris Harris brown? He looks it. Oh and Karun Chandhok on what’s left of Fifth Gear. So then these are my bros, but in the overall scheme of things, that level of representation is quite pathetic really.
Especially when you realise that ethnic minorities make up 19.5% of the UK population, over 7% of that reported as being Black and Asian according to the 2011 Census.
Ethnic minorities’ disposable income is estimated at £300bn and Black and Asian consumers are believed to earn £156bn after tax, all of which is undoubtedly higher now compared to when those figures were originally compiled.
That’s a big market to be outright ignoring, inadvertently omitting, or at the very least, missing out on the opportunity to relate to. What are you thinking?
Just a black or brown face won’t do of course. You need someone with credibility, knowledge and a solid track record as well as experience in front of the camera. Step forward The Brown Car Guy – that’s me, in case you didn’t realise! Hey producers I’m waiting for your call, email or Whatsapp. Don’t risk missing out on a burgeoning market segment you may not be inspiring.
Well it’s either me or Idris Elba. Oh damn.