Record ratings for National Geographic Channel’s Car S.O.S.


ALDRIDGE, UNITED KINGDOM- Tim Shaw and Fuzz Townshend driving a pristine Jaguar E-Type. (Photo credit: National Geographic Channels/Jon Scorer)

ALDRIDGE, UNITED KINGDOM- Tim Shaw and Fuzz Townshend driving a pristine Jaguar E-Type.
(Photo credit: National Geographic Channels/Jon Scorer)

fuzz and tim against panel
















22 April 2015

Record ratings (again) for second episode of Fuzz Townshend’s Car S.O.S.

  • Car S.O.S. records highest ratings among all factual programmes on satellite channels
  • Troublesome E-Type returned to tip-top condition with much effort and determination
  • Third episode of Car S.O.S. third season aired tomorrow, featuring MkI Golf GTI


TV presenter Fuzz Townshend’s Car S.O.S.’s new, third season, tops the ratings again: the series’s second episode, featuring Fuzz’s gruesome odyssey to return a Jaguar E-type to its original splendour, wins first position in the factual programme charts on satellite channels for the second time in two weeks.


“Car S.O.S.’s top position for the first episode of the current series was already a record,” said Fuzz, “but the position seems to have consolidated now, with similar amazing reception from audiences all over the world.”


Car S.O.S. is in its third series; owned by the National Geographic Channel, the brand new season is broadcast in the UK on Thursdays at 8.00pm. Channel 4 and More4 have already bought the broadcasting rights to the first and second series.


The third episode of Car S.O.S., “Golf GTi Obsession”, is broadcast tomorrow, 23 April, on National Geographic Channel, at 8.00pm. A 1982 MkI Golf GTi, belonging to a man who’s been suffering from debilitating headaches for a decade, needs Fuzz and co-presenter Tim to come to the rescue. The ultimate Eighties’ hot-hatch is in a bad state, but giving it a new lease of life is not as difficult as reconciling Fuzz and Tim’s completely different ideas about how the GTi should look, when completed.




Useful links:

Fuzz Townshend’s Facebook page: Fuzz Townshend FB page

Twitter: @fuzztownshend

Car SOS series: and



Car S.O.S. in numbers:


30                    the number of cars reconditioned across the three series filmed so far


100+                the number of countries where the show is broadcast


500/1,000        the number of man-hours spent on each of the projects


24                    the number of weeks spent to do ten cars (per series)


500k                the number of regular viewers in the UK


Note to Editors:

Richard Townshend, renamed ‘Fuzz’ in junior school because of his Afro hair, has been fond of old motor cars (and buses!), as well as music, since his childhood. He served a full diesel motor vehicle engineer apprenticeship and worked at a bus garage on Daimler and Leyland buses. From staff writer to Technical Editor at Practical Classics, and currently the owner of a classic car restoration business, Westgate Classics, Fuzz Townshend’s effort to diversify and grow resulted in a successful screen test for a new National Geographical Channel show, ‘Car SOS’. The production company also selected the workshop as the main location for the series, and the place where restoration projects are carried out.

Fuzz’s latest venture, Classic Friendly Ltd, ( is a network of classic-friendly garages which give classic cars the once-over in the post ‘no-MOT’ era, as well as standardised servicing. He is still a mean drummer.


Fuzz Townshend launches TIGOSE’s Apprenticeship Programme

For immediate release

8 December 2014

The International Guild of Specialist Engineers’ Classic Car Restoration Apprenticeship launched by classic car world celebrity Fuzz Townshend

  • TV presenter, classic car restoration business owner and Classic Friendly founder Fuzz Townshend launches TIGOSE Programme at Emtec Colleges workshops, Nottingham
  • The first and only specialised course of its kind in the UK

The first historic and classic vehicle restoration Apprenticeship Programme in the UK – conceived by TIGOSE founder Michael Scott – was launched by TV personality Fuzz Townshend today.

A new partnership between dedicated automotive centre Emtec Colleges (part of Central College, Nottingham) and TIGOSE (The International Guild of Specialist Engineers), the Programme is structured around the IMI’s Classic Vehicle Restoration Level 2 and Level 3 Diplomas and regularly monitored by an IMI Lead External Verifier.

Motoring journalist and classic car expert Fuzz Townshend was at hand to welcome the first apprentices and visiting students on the first day of the programme. “I appreciated the opportunities offered by my own apprenticeship, gained many years ago,” said Fuzz. “As a college lecturer, journalist, hands-on restorer and founder of Classic Friendly (a network of classic car garages), I also know that apprenticeships have moved on significantly since I started out, and so has the business of car restoration. Once achieved the fundamental skills, you can focus on specific marques, or building classic race engines. I’ve worked around the world, on cars ranging from just hundreds of pounds to half a million and more, learning all the time. It’s an exciting and emotive business: people love their cars and will expect the highest level of workmanship from you, but it’s immensely rewarding if you have the skills and share that enthusiasm. A dedicated apprenticeship programme is exactly what is needed to bring new talent and young people into a thriving business.”

Fuzz also added, about The International Guild of Specialist Engineers: “TIGOSE is bringing the excellence in this sector forward, raising standards all the time. The classic car restoration business has been perceived to be a little ‘backyard’ in the past but now the specialist skills needed to bring some of these luxury and rare vehicles back to their former glory is being recognised and appreciated.”

TIGOSE, in conjunction with Emtec Colleges, has devised an extensive programme with modules covering Paint, Panel, Trim, Customer Service, Parts and Machine Shop Engineering. Vehicles Restoration Apprentices acquire specific knowledge and competencies that can be put into direct action back in their workshops upon their return from the Academy.

“Our partnership with associations such as TIGOSE, the IMI and local companies such as Rolls-Royce and Bentley specialists shows us that there is a real need for the industry to develop young people to be tomorrow’s classic car restorers,” says Jon Rawson, Head of Emtec Colleges, whose own daughter is embarking in an automotive engineering course at the company’s Nottingham premises.

TIGOSE founder Michael Scott, whose brainchild the Apprenticeship Programme is, was delighted: “it is a real comfort to see The International Guild of Specialist Engineers’ project take off as the first of its kind in the UK. I consider our programme the Rolls-Royce of all other similar, but not as all-encompassing, initiatives. Well-known celebrity Fuzz Townshend is an inspiration for all young people with a passion for classic cars, so we were delighted to have him launch our Apprenticeship Programme today.”

Fuzz Townshend judges MotoFest’s Young Innovators competition

Coventry motorfest logo 2014





17 December 2014

TV star Fuzz Townshend judges MotoFest’s Young Innovators competition

  • Brand ambassador and ‘Influencer’ Fuzz Townshend on panel to choose winner
  • Coventry MotoFest launched competition for school children last month
  • Young Innovators to design Pace Car for May 2015 event

TV presenter and journalist Fuzz Townshend is on the judging panel at Coventry MotoFest’s headquarters tonight, to choose the winner of the “Young Innovators” competition launched by MotoFest.

Coventry-based secondary schools were invited to submit their entries for ‘Best Design’ of the Pace Car built for next year’s event (29/31 May).

A vociferous and passionate spokesperson supporting all initiatives stimulating creativity and growth in the car industry, Fuzz was invited by MotoFest organisers to help decide which entry will be converted into CAD (by Coventry University) before Jaguar Special Vehicle Operations turn it into reality.

“I did my apprenticeship at the local bus company, and believe that it is our job to encourage future generations to keep the automotive industry alive and fresh with ideas,” says Fuzz, who has recently launched The International Guild of Specialist Engineers’ Apprenticeship Programme at automotive training provider Emtec Colleges. “I am delighted to have been asked to be on the judging panel for an initiative which involves young children’s creativity and turns it into styling, engineering and manufacturing processes.”

MotoFest organiser Ralph Hosier echoes the feeling: “Our competition calls for budding engineers and designers to have an active role in next year’s event planning. We asked Fuzz to help us as a recognised opinion leader in the industry, and for his active campaigning to attract new talent and skills to the motor industry.”

The overall winner, two runners-up and a prize for “Most Inventive” will be announced by the weekend.

Car S.O.S. new series launched to international media by Fuzz Townshend

Car S.O.S. new series launched to international media by Fuzz Townshend

  • Media launch hosted by National Geographic Channel on 18 March
  • The London Transport Museum was venue for screening and media interviews
  • 1962 Healey Sprite racer at the launch featured in special episode of new series


Car S.O.S. presenter Fuzz Townshend announced the new series (Season 3) of the popular TV programme at the international media launch hosted by the National Geographic Channel at the London Transport Museum. The new series will be shown from April 9, at 8pm, on Thursdays.

The show, which is owned and broadcast worldwide in more than 100 countries by the National Geographic Channel, is now in its third series; rights to the first and second series have recently been bought by UK terrestrial channel Channel 4 and the programme is also shown on More4.

Dozens of media representatives from around the world gathered at the London Transport Museum to interview Fuzz and co-presenter Tim Shaw. With thirty cars (ten episodes per series) now reconditioned and given back to extremely grateful and deserving owners, and thousands of work hours spent on them, Fuzz Townshend and co-presenter Tim Shaw have become familiar faces on the small screen, fronting a programme whose mission statement is: “rebuilding cars and lives.”

“I am really excited to announce the latest season of Car S.O.S.,” said Fuzz. “Each car we find and choose to recondition holds a story. Barn finds (as so many of the cars we have worked on are) hold promises we are keen to unravel: even the glovebox may store some surprise.”

The launch also featured another star: an Austin Healey Sprite Sebring, one of four cars built by Healey to enter the 1962 Sebring 12-Hour Florida International GP of Endurance (in the Sebring 3 Hours, GT category, <1-litre engines). Lighter than the standard model, with race-tuned engine, upgraded suspension and brakes and a racing box, it is the only surviving one of the four, driven by Sir Stirling Moss, Pedro Rodriguez, Innes Ireland and Steve McQueen (all for BMC).

Moss led the race for most of the time, ran out of fuel and ended up third overall against a brace of very quick Abarths.

True to the spirit of the Car S.O.S. series, work on the car was carried out by Fuzz’s team in secret at Fuzz’s own garage, Westgate Classics, trying to preserve as much as possible of the original specs.

The Sprite Sebring took pride of place at the London Transport Museum; it had been presented to Sir Stirling after work was completed, a few weeks ago, at the Gaydon Heritage Motor Centre.

“It is always a buzz to unveil a car which has been restored by the Car S.O.S. team and Westgate workshop,” said Fuzz. “However, when the recipient is Sir Stirling Moss, the stress to complete the job to the best of our abilities is increased tenfold. It was great to see one of the most famous racing drivers of all times drive away in a car he had not seen for over fifty years.”

Some of Car S.O.S.’s useful numbers:

30                    the number of cars reconditioned across the three series filmed so far

100+                the number of countries where the show is broadcast

500/1,000        the number of man-hours spent on each of the projects

24                    the number of weeks spent to do ten cars (per series)

500k                the number of regular viewers in the UK