Paul Hollywood is swapping the kitchen for his favourite cars to presents a brand new television show.
Describing himself as a “full-time baker and part-time racing driver”, Paul sets off on a Big Continental Road Trip to discover the best and worst of motoring in Italy, Germany and France.
Along the way he samples the local food, drink and fun and is joined by local and special guests who share his irreverent sense of humour.
Paul reckons it’s possible to tell almost everything about a place and its people from the cars they drive, and aims to bring viewers on a journey of discovery with our continental neighbours. With the current debate about Britain’s relationship with Europe hotter than ever, there’s no better time to have a lighthearted look at national identities through the prism of the motor car.
Viewers will see Paul behind the wheel of some of the most expensive, exotic, weirdest and worst cars from each nation he tours, learning about the people who drive them and the history that’s made the cars what they are.
Paul learns to drive like an Italian as he attempts to navigate Rome’s crazy traffic in a borrowed Lamborghini – with Strictly’s Bruno Tonioli as co-driver. He delivers dry-cleaning in a 3-wheel Piaggio Ape, samples mass-produced cars like the Alfasud and Fiat Panda 4×4, and looks at the past to understand what shaped Italy’s motoring heritage.
In Germany, Paul is spooked out by Volkswagen’s almost too pristine home town, samples no speed limits on the Autobahn with racing driver Bernd Schneider in a Mercedes AMG GT, visits a nudist camp in a VW Kombi van and takes comedian and Germanophile Al Murray for a spin around the Nürburgring.
Finally, in France, Paul races a horse and cart across a field, meets the legendary driver and constructor Henri Pescarolo at the iconic Le Mans circuit to explore the appeal of the 24-hour endurance race, and challenges one of Renault’s first turbo-era Formula One cars around the Magny Cours circuit in a modern hot hatchback.
Commenting on the show, Paul Hollywood said: “Cars have been a passion for me since I was a small boy and first saw the Aston Martin DB5 in a Bond film. I use them to de-stress and I believe they’re a means of expression, not just a means of transport. It’s a dream for me to be able to share my passion on television for the first time with this new series with BBC Two. While baking is my job and what I’m best known for, cars have always been my greatest love – I hope that comes across in the show and that viewers enjoy coming on these terrific journeys with me.”
The Big Continental Road Trip is on BBC 1 on Sunday at 9pm.