Sony and Nissan spark TV bidding war

ITV, Channel 4, UKTV-owned Dave and Virgin Media Television youth channel Bravo are understood to be involved in a bidding war for the right to broadcast an advertiser-funded series by Sony PlayStation and Nissan.

The two brands are creating a five-episode TV series based on a competition which will see two European PlayStation gamers trained to become Nissan racing drivers.

The TV show is the last part of the GT Academycompetition and experiential campaign, created by TBWA/Stream, which, through TBWA/London, handles the advertising for both brands. Content and broadcasting deals will also be struck across European markets.

PlayStation initiated the activity with an online competition involving its driving game Gran Turismo on its PS3 console, in order to bolster take-up of its internet services and PlayStation Network.

Country winners were then invited to Silverstone to compete in a series of elimination events to test their real-life driving skills.

The winners will be trained over the next four months and will compete as part of the Nissan team at a 24-hour endurance race in Dubai in January.

The TV series will follow the racers through the competition to the endurance race, with transmission expected early next year.

The two brands have worked together previously. Sony PlayStation designers created the interface for the onboard computer for the GT-R, Nissan’s supercar which launches next year.

It is also likely that the GT Academy, devised by Nissan and PlayStation over three years with Stream, will be rolled out to territories outside Europe.

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