‘Top Gear’ Christmas specials have reportedly been axed

The BBC motoring show was expected to return for a pair of festive episodes later this year

Top Gear‘s planned 2016 Christmas specials have reportedly been axed.

The BBC motoring show was expected to return for a pair of festive episodes later this year, but these appear to have been abandoned as executives put all their energies into reviving the brand’s flagging fortunes.

An unnamed source told the Daily Star: “We need to focus on making sure we have a great series to come back with in 2017.”

A BBC representative confirmed that “planning for Top Gear series 24 is under way,” adding, “The team will be working towards bringing the show back some time in the early part of 2017. So all our energies are on that.”

It has recently been reported that Matt LeBlanc is set to host the next series of Top Gear by himself after Chris Evans’ announced his departure from the show earlier this month .

Evans quit Top Gear on July 4 after admitting that his “best shot” at presenting the show wasn’t enough.

Overnight viewing figures had revealed that the show attracted a record low of 1.9 million viewers to BBC2 for the series finale on July 3. It was up against the France v Iceland Euro 2016 game on ITV and Antiques Roadshow on BBC1.

In June, it was reported that LeBlanc had threatened to leave the show unless Evans was sacked. His spokespeople denied the story was true.