“Flipping Bangers” is a British reality-television series, made by the production company, Just Might TV, for the Blaze TV network. It revolved around two friends, Will Trickett and Gus Gregory, who shared an excessive interest in cars. They scoured the city for old, unwanted and damaged cars to fix them up in a week, so that they could then sell them for a profit.

“Flipping Bangers,” Two Seasons and 20 Episodes

The pilot episode of “Flipping Bangers” was shown to TV executives in 2017, and was picked up by Blaze TV; the network ordered 10 episodes for its first season, which debuted on 13 April 2018. They gained a foothold on the TV viewership ratings, and ordered another 10 episodes for a second season, which aired in 2019. The success of the show surprised people, as there was already an influx of car shows on TV not only in the UK, but much more so in the US.

Some TV insiders pointed out that it was probably because the show offered something different. While the concept of restoring cars wasn’t new anymore, as there were shows such as “Chasing Classic Cars” and “Wheelers Dealers,” this series focused on the most affordable car to restore. The vehicles that were chosen by Gus and Will were those that most people wouldn’t touch with a barge pole. Viewers were able to easily resonate with the duo, as they presented the car as well as how to fix it from the perspective of ordinary people with minimal budget and basic tools. Gus and Will also offered advice and tips on managing car problems, and conducting simple repairs.

Most of the viewers appreciated that everything was done more simply compared to other fancy auto restoration shows. The fans compared “Flipping Bangers” to the first season of “Wheeler Dealers”, in which they bought a banger, fixed it, and then brought it back to the street.

Regular people loved the idea that they could also find a car at the bottom of the market junkyard, and then restore it to become useable again, while perhaps making a profit out of it.

However, not all of their goals were achieved as some of their strategies didn’t work the way they planned them to, but viewers were still treated to these rare moments on TV. Due to their life-long passion for trying to put new life into those neglected cars, even if some of them were too much of a hassle to restore, the pair still took on the challenge, so the show wasn’t all about success, but also failures. Future car owners could learn from their experiences, and could avoid the obvious pitfalls in buying used cars.

There were talks in social media that the TV series would air its third season in 2020, as some episodes were said to be already in the can.

Flipping Bangers

However, the Covid-19 pandemic happened, which made it difficult for any TV production to continue filming, due to several travel restrictions as well as community lockdowns. Fans were hoping that the third season would be available in 2021, however, rumors of cancelation also went around social media, but there was still no official announcement from the cast and producers. Fans were confused as to what the real score was, and some believed that “Flipping Bangers” wouldn’t return for another season, since no one was manning the official social media accounts anymore. The last post from Twitter and Facebook was made back in January 2020, which promoted the airing of bonus episodes from the second season. Their Instagram account’s last post was in April 2019.

Meet Will and Gus, the petrol heads

Fans of the TV show, “Flipping Bangers,” appreciated the uncanny chemistry that the self-proclaimed British petrol heads, Will Tricket and Gus Gregory, had in the show.

There’s a huge percentage of the reality-TV series industry that had been accused by fans of being scripted and over-dramatized. Seeing them both comfortable with each other, whether they were happy or under pressure, made a huge difference. Both of them not only liked the idea of flipping cars, but they liked each other and that made everything they did in the show seem genuine.

Will is an engineer, designer and mechanic, as well as a boat builder, which made him the perfect person for the job. He started tinkering with cars when he was around six years old, but the first real job he worked on was a busted head gasket on their lodger’s Fiat 126, which he said was an easy thing to fix.

“Flipping Bangers” wasn’t Will’s first dip in the auto restoration reality-TV genre either. He was already the main TV presenter for the TV show “Ultimate Wheels,” which aired back in 2013.

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He worked with another British creative petrol head turned reality star, Elo. The concept was pretty much similar to “Flipping Bangers,” which was transforming cars, although they targeted classic cars and turned them into supercars.  For some reason, his former TV show only lasted for one season of eight episodes.

Gus, on the other hand, had a day job as a professional photographer. His skills had led him to be commissioned to do travel photography, and then later moved on to automotive photography. Coupled with his fascination with cars and their mechanism, it gained him a reputation for being a certified petrol head.

When the idea of doing a reality-TV show about automobile restoration was presented to them, they both gave up their day jobs, and focused on transforming cars.

Favorites, hobbies, spoilers, and interesting facts about the show

  • In June 2019, the official Twitter account of Blaze TV proudly re-tweeted an announcement that “Flipping Bangers” with its 9.8 ratings was the highest-rated TV show on the IMDB site, replacing Chernobyl’s 9.7 ratings.
  • Will’s favorite banger that he bought and restored in the second season was a Skoda Estelle, while Gus preferred the small Reliant Kitten, which he believed was a much maligned car when it came out on the market. However, it turned out to be a brilliant car, particularly with the technology that was used to create them at that time.
  • The project car that broke the duo’s plans was the VW Beetle – Will said it was like acquiring a problem child. Both already knew from the get-go that it would be a challenging task to restore, because they got it cheaply. True enough, they weren’t able to meet their goal on time. To make it more realistic, instead of stubbornly pursuing their initial goal, they changed their plans, and instead sold the car without it passing an MOT (Ministry of Transport) test, to another person who wanted to restore it.
  • Will’s wife bought the Audi that they fixed from the first season, because she fell in love with it. He, on the other hand, restored a 1986 Military Land Rover Defender 110, with all its original parts. Gus didn’t own any car from their “Flipping Banger” car collection, but he drove an old Land Rover Series 3, which he often tinkered with whenever there was something wrong with it, that is, frequently.
  • For the last two seasons of the TV show, Gus and Will bought, restored, and sold over 20 cars. Being exposed to a wide variety of cars from different eras made Will realize that there were cars that he thought he would have liked to own when they came out in the market. However, after getting close-up and personal with some of them, he was glad that he didn’t have the money to buy them at that time.
  • The worst car Will ever bought was almost three decades old, which was a Morris Minor 1100 pickup. Initially, it got him everywhere with no hiccups until the day he drove it to his girlfriend’s house. The chassis snapped in half, and only the handbrake cables were keeping the front connected to the back. However, he restored it, and it’s still being used up to this day.

Top three memorable moments on the show

Here are some of the unforgettable scenes on “Flipping Bangers”, that made it uniquely different from most of the auto restoration reality-TV series out there:

The Volkswagen Beetle Challenge

It was originally aired on 14 June 2019 for the eighth episode in the second season of the show. Gus and Will chose a classic Volkswagen Beetle with a budget of $1,300 (1,000 pounds). The beetle was built in South America and not Germany. When they found it, the car wasn’t well-maintained, but they still bought it even knowing the challenges that they would meet in order to fully restore it. No matter how much time and effort they put into fixing it, they eventually threw in the towel, and accepted that they’d failed.

Flipping Bangers

Paul Bracket from “Wheelers Dealers”

When the petrol heads took on the challenge of restoring a Porsche 924, they invited an expert to serve as their technical consultant. Fans of the TV series “Wheelers Dealers,” would immediately recognize Paul Bracket, as he came in to help Will and Gus restore the classic sports car. The car’s mechanism was tricky, as it was the first road-going Porsche designed with a front-engine rear-wheel drive.

The Austin Maestro MG Project

In May 2019, for the third episode of the second season, Will and Gus bought an Austin Maestro MG. Initially, they wanted to look for a classic British sports car, but due to their limited budget and schedule, they chose something a little simpler. The car they chose was one of the most maligned in the car industry by the press, and unfortunately in the eyes of tconsumers as well.

When they finished the project, viewers could easily see the pride in the eyes of Will and Gus as they came up with something really special.

Whether “Flipping Bangers” will return or not, it will always be remembered as one auto restoration reality-TV show without the usual fake scenarios just to attract more viewers. Fans and critics considered it genuine, unscripted, informative, and entertaining as well. Will expressed it best when he said, ‘That’s why we try and be as honest as we can, in a nutshell. Because that is life.’ He also said that none of us were infallible as we all make mistakes, which more or less explained why the TV show showed even their failures instead of just presenting the positive side of auto restoration. This was mainly why they gained a loyal following, and consistently positive feedback from both viewers and TV critics.

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