Tapping into the nearly 70-year history of the MotorTrend automotive brand, the network will double down on its vehicular focus. MotorTrend will be available in 73 million U.S. homes.
“Seven years ago, I had the privilege of working with an amazing team at Discovery to create Velocity – the only television home for fans of the car genre,” said Robert S. Scanlon, President of MotorTrend Network and Video Content, MotorTrend Group. “MotorTrend Network represents the next great content innovation for this underserved audience. With the network, the MotorTrend App and MotorTrend.com, we’re going to provide deeper, richer, more engaging experiences for consumers on any device, anytime.”
Discovery has been rearranging a fair amount of network furniture since closing its $14.4 billion acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive, parent of networks such as Food Network and HGTV.
Even before the merger, the company rebranded parts of its vast portfolio a few times, turning Discovery Travel & Living Network into Planet Green, which then became Destination America; and Discovery Health into OWN. The former Scripps family is also not immune to channel changes — Joanna and Chip Gaines, longtime former hosts of HGTV’s Fixer Upper, just announced last Friday that they are returning to TV with their own lifestyle network backed by Discovery.
The MotorTrend revamp was announced last spring. In addition to the linear network, the group also includes a direct-to-consumer digital offering, a YouTube channel and highly trafficked websites such as Hot Rod, Roadkill, Automobile, Truck Trend, Super Street and a New Car Buyers Guide. It also has a branded content agency and manages many live, auto-focused events around the world.
Media buyers will find a new coherence to the rebrand, executives have maintained. “The Motor Trend Group is the only place where advertisers can buy across linear TV, digital and social media platforms, live events and branded content to carry a unified message reaching potential car buyers and an affluent male audience,” said Discovery sales chief Jon Steinlauf said when the name change was first revealed.