Jay Leno’s 30-Year Run at NBCUniversal Poised to End as CNBC Cancels His ‘Garage’ Car Series

The host has had a presence on at least one of NBC's channels since he took over 'The Tonight Show' in 1992.

Comedian Jay Leno‘s 30-year run of having a TV show on one of NBCUniversal’s TV channels appears to be ending.

A CNBC source tells The Hollywood Reporter that it has decided to cancel the reality show Jay Leno’s Garage, which has been a staple of its primetime lineup since 2015. 

The cancellation comes amid a larger schedule shift at the channel, with its primetime hours to focus on reality reruns of Shark Tank and Undercover Boss, as well as original business documentaries.

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Jay Leno’s Garage, which sees Leno showing off his enormous car collection and interviewing celebrity guests like President Biden and Elon Musk, also served as a landing pad for Leno when he left The Tonight Show in 2014.

Leno’s last Tonight Show episode was in February 2014, and CNBC ordered Jay Leno’s Garage just a few months later. It began as an NBC.com web series, and then was picked up by CNBC after a special episode in the summer of 2014 took off.

The show aired its seventh and final season last fall.

One of the world’s most renowned car enthusiasts, Leno has shown off his car collection on a number of TV programs. The comedian suffered third-degree burns in an accident at his garage late last year. His first interview after the accident was with NBC’s Today show.

Leno has been a loyal NBC staple since 1992, when he took over The Tonight Show from Johnny Carson. That troubled succession story (Late Night host David Letterman also wanted the show, and ended up launching his own competitor on CBS) led to Leno agreeing to hand over The Tonight Show to Conan O’Brien in 2009. 

Of course, Leno ended up regretting that decision, and NBC, worried that Leno would jump to a competitor like Fox or ABC, kept him at the network with a 10 p.m. program, The Jay Leno Show, which used a similar format to his Tonight Show.

With NBC facing ratings troubles, the network hatched a plan to move Leno back to 11:30 p.m., and shift The Tonight Show to midnight, but O’Brien pushed back, eventually leading to a settlement where he left NBC, and Leno returned to The Tonight Show. He officially left the show in 2014, handing it over to Jimmy Fallon.

Leno also hosts the syndicated game show You Bet Your Life, which is produced by Fox.

But with the end of Jay Leno’s Garage, the comedian’s career at NBC, spanning four decades, appears poised to come to an end.

Unless Peacock is in the market for a car show, of course.