SBD/February 28, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Wheels & Deals: Will Chevrolet Enter Camaro In NASCAR In '13?

GM previously could not get Camaro to fit NASCAR template
In Toronto, Dean McNulty reports GM Racing Dir Mark Kent "is not ruling out" that the Camaro "will be the new model Chevrolet is planning to enter in NASCAR" in '13. That is a "reversal of sorts from a decision to not enter the Camaro into the Nationwide series last season when Chrysler and Ford entered their pony cars -- Challenger and Mustang respectively." Kent: "We just could not get the Camaro to fit the NASCAR template, without compromising its unique styling." But he said the Camaro model being used in NASCAR in the future is "not a dead issue." Kent: "We are learning a lot about how we can get more relevance into the car without sacrificing performance or styling" (TORONTO SUN, 2/28). Kent added that the "best thing about the 2013 Cup cars will be the increased brand identity for all the manufacturers, no matter which model is selected" (ESPN.com, 2/27).

NOT GOING DOWN THAT ROAD: F1 team McLaren Mercedes CFO Andy Myers said that it "will not be following its British rival Williams to the stock market." The GUARDIAN's Sylt & Reid note Williams Wednesday "will become the first F1 team to float when it lists 28% of its shares on the Frankfurt stock exchange." Williams "has reduced and tightened the flotation share price range from" about $33-40 (all figures U.S.) a share to between $34-38 a share, "ahead of pricing" tomorrow (GUARDIAN, 2/28).

COST SAVINGS: The BBC's Andrew Benson reported F1 team Red Bull Racing's Renault engines "will be renamed Infiniti this season in a move that will boost the world champion team's budget" by at least $11M. The engines "will be the same, branding aside, but the plan means Red Bull will get their engines for free." That will save the team about $11M per year, "the cost of all customer engine supplies in Formula 1." Benson wrote Infiniti is "using F1 to boost its global profile" (BBC.co.uk, 2/27).

NOTES: The AP's John Marshall reported sales of Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne's licensed merchandise on NASCAR.com "is at a rate nearly three times all other drivers and the sales pace is more than double" last year's Daytona 500 winner, Jamie McMurray (AP, 2/26).....Great Clips will title sponsor the Labor Day weekend NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway for a second consecutive year. The Sept. 3 race will be titled the Great Clips 300. Great Clips sponsors the No. 38 Chevy driven by Jason Leffler and Kasey Kahne in the series, and it is the longest-standing primary sponsor in Nationwide, having been a sponsor since '00 (AMS).
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