Tuesday, January 26, 2016

The Limits Of The Auto Manufacturers In Racing

This repost of the VW Diesel Cheating fiasco is made to make a larger point about the auto manufacturers in relation to racing. The manufacturers have built their cars - both for the street and in their approach to backing raceteams - to where they won't let individual owners be able to fix their own cars and raceteams have become too dependent on a limited number of outside suppliers, usually the factories themselves, to race.   In the past of some 30 years ago raceteams could build their own racecars and their own engines, and as late as 1996 such autonomy was still in existence.

Lack of transparency from the manufacturers is why the VW cheating deal happened and it reflects myopia by the manufacturers - if they'd be open and let individuals be able to fix their own cars, and/or open up the technology book for individual garages like Wakefield Tire in Massachusetts as opposed to just dealership ones, it won't hurt a manufacturer's bottom line - on the contrary such goodwell improves the relationship with the customer.

It applies to racing as well, as raceteams who would be allowed to build their own engines etc. - at present in NASCAR only about four teams have their own engine shops and the manufacturers have done nothing I can see to train or assist more teams to be able to build engines - long ago proved they would be loyal to a manufacturer.  "People see their cars as extensions of themselves," because they are extensions of people.   Manufacturers need to be more open and allow more autonomy for customers and also raceteams because that builds more such extensions and benefits the manufacturers in the long run.

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