Ryan Story has hailed Supercars’ new approach to adding more marques to the championship under Gen3 through intellectual property acquisitions.
The model will put less emphasis on manufacturer investment into the sport, rather, Supercars will look to acquire IP from manufacturers to drape their silhouette over the new Gen3 chassis.
The 2022 season will see the Ford Mustang go up against the Chevrolet Camaro, the latter of which will be introduced to the championship under the new IP scheme.
Shell V-Power Racing Team boss Ryan Story, who has been part of the working group behind Gen3, said the days of well-funded manufacturer efforts are gone and that the new IP model is the way forward.
“I think we have to be conscious of the fact that manufacturing support today is not as we knew it in earlier days of the championship,” Story told Speedcafe.com.
“If you look to the late 2000s as the halcyon days of Ford and Holden investing significant amounts money into the sport and the potential of other manufacturers like Volvo and Nissan, so to speak, to come along with significant amounts of money to go motor racing, it’s not likely to happen in the current landscape – that’s simply fact.”
Story is optimistic the new approach will see more marques added to the championship, suggesting interest from manufacturers was high.
Supercars has said it is working in earnest to acquire IP from other manufacturers with an eye on a possible third marque for 2022.
“The option to do IP agreements with manufacturers is something that’s exciting,” said Story.
“I think that there is a significant degree of interest there, but certainly as a starting place, pitting Camaro against Mustang, is quite fitting.
“Not only is it having two great cars racing against each other, but it also rings true to the way the sport has been, certainly since 1993, where it’s been red versus blue and GM Holden vs Ford.
“We’re excited about that. It does feel like a return to its roots in some respects, given that the cars will have a very similar optical appearance, in terms of the shape and styling, which is important. It’s a very exciting opportunity for us.
“I think that some people get lost a little bit in terms of some of the discussions around where manufacturers can potentially fit into the mix.
“The reality is, that the IP side of things is something that would work very well.
“Confirmation that Ford, and Mustang, and GM Specialty Vehicles, and Camaro are the foundation of the sport from 2022 onwards, it’s the real story for Gen3, as far as I’m concerned.”
Under Holden Special Vehicles, remanufacturing of the current sixth-generation Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 has ceased and is no longer sold in Australia.
As it stands, the Chevrolet Camaro will not be sold in Australia when it makes its Supercars Championship debut in 2022.
However, the recent launch of General Motors Special Vehicles may open the door for the Camaro to be sold down under.
Ryan Walkinshaw who is the Walkinshaw Automotive Group Director, the group responsible for the remanufacturing of GMSV vehicles, said the US may decide to reintroduce the Camaro to Australia.
Though there does remain uncertainty surrounding the platform in the United States beyond the current sixth generation, which will be manufactured state-side until 2023.
Regardless of whether the roadgoing Camaro is or is not in Australia, Story said it’s not an issue.
“One of the key things, when you look back through the 60 years of the touring car championship, is, I think for about a third of those, the cars that won the championship, and certainly were competing, were not sold in Australia,” said Story.
“Obviously the Sierra’s in the Group A days, and a lot of other cars in the Group A days that weren’t in showrooms around the country. That’s the case with the Camaro side of things, but it’s still a hero car for that brand.
“Mustang is the most successful sports car in Australia and in the world. It’s the number one selling sports car in Australia and in the world. We’re excited about how that works, and how that will work going forward.
“It’s quite a great opportunity to effectively look at how we go racing and improve the product. It has these two great cars face each other back on the race track. It’s very exciting.”