Manufacturer loyalty...

Ford 222

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I’m a Ford guy. I’ve had Fords and loved them but I’m not so jacked up about it that I can’t own a Tacoma since it has the absolute best resale and does all I need. Paul’s my boat, my trailer, and my 4 wheeler fits in the bed.

Now, do we that are manufacturer loyal (not talking to those who don’t care so no need to tell us) actually think our drivers are? Or are they EVER? I never thought my driver Mark Martin, who had been pretty to loyal to Ford with Roush, owned a Ford Dealership in Batesville, and ALWAYS bragged about his Ford allegiance, would drive a Hendrick Chevy than a MWR TOYOTA! BTW, I learned I was a real MM fan, died hard with him no matter what he drove.

So my question I guess is, do we think ANYONE driving really cares what they are driving?
 

Ford 222

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I’m a Ford guy. I’ve had Fords and loved them but I’m not so jacked up about it that I can’t own a Tacoma since it has the absolute best resale and does all I need. Paul’s my boat, my trailer, and my 4 wheeler fits in the bed.

Now, do we that are manufacturer loyal (not talking to those who don’t care so no need to tell us) actually think our drivers are? Or are they EVER? I never thought my driver Mark Martin, who had been pretty to loyal to Ford with Roush, owned a Ford Dealership in Batesville, and ALWAYS bragged about his Ford allegiance, would drive a Hendrick Chevy than a MWR TOYOTA! BTW, I learned I was a real MM fan, died hard with him no matter what he drove.

So my question I guess is, do we think ANYONE driving really cares what they are driving?
Yeah, I’ve had a few. “PLUS, it pulls my boat, my trailer, and my 4 wheeler fits in the bed“ is what I meant.
 

Biggreen695

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I’m diehard Chevy/gm but In a few months I will be pricing around and shopping for a Tacoma. I don’t need a full size truck anymore and it will be a cold day in hell before I drive a Colorado. Not to mention the new Chevys aren’t that aesthetically pleasing.


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Head423

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I’m a Larson and all around Hendrick guy. I drive a Dodge Ram. I’m more loyal to sponsors than manufacturers per say. I try and help the businesses that help nascar keep going. But I wouldn’t not take a Silverado if it was offered to me lol.
 

Biggreen695

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Let me also had that I am anti joe gibbs and I hate Trd


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dirtfan

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I’m a Ford guy. I’ve had Fords and loved them but I’m not so jacked up about it that I can’t own a Tacoma since it has the absolute best resale and does all I need. Paul’s my boat, my trailer, and my 4 wheeler fits in the bed.

Now, do we that are manufacturer loyal (not talking to those who don’t care so no need to tell us) actually think our drivers are? Or are they EVER? I never thought my driver Mark Martin, who had been pretty to loyal to Ford with Roush, owned a Ford Dealership in Batesville, and ALWAYS bragged about his Ford allegiance, would drive a Hendrick Chevy than a MWR TOYOTA! BTW, I learned I was a real MM fan, died hard with him no matter what he drove.

So my question I guess is, do we think ANYONE driving really cares what they are driving?
Other than the Tacoma (Rav 4 here, for the wife) this is my exact story. Plus the fact that I've watched Mark race since the day he first climbed in to a racecar made him the obvious choice for me to root for.
 

RacerrecaR

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Every driver has their preference but very few will turn down a ride from any manufacturer if they see the dollar signs. Heck, most drivers' favorite manufacturer may not even be in their respective series thus making the loyalty argument moot.

I'm both a pre-1972 American muscle fan (Oldsmobile and Dodge) and a post-1980 Japanese manufacturer fan (Isuzu, Toyota, Honda)
 

cheesepuffs

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None of the drivers care. It's a business and they're going to take the job that offers them the best chance to win, the best pay, the best team culture, etc. The manufacturer plugs by drivers are purely a transactional relationship, not a passion. Kyle Busch is the TRD poster boy but also owns classic Chevys. Daniel Suarez is a big air-cooled VW enthusiast. Alex Bowman had a bagged Lexus GS that he posted all over Instagram before he got his Hendrick deal. Jeff Gordon was on a show on Speed years ago where they showed some of his day to day type stuff and he was daily driving a silver Ferrari F430 (does anybody else remember that and know what show it was?). Dale Earnhardt was toying with the idea of going from the GM Goodwrench Chevy to the Ford Quality Care Thunderbird. It's just business on the track.
 

RacerrecaR

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None of the drivers care. It's a business and they're going to take the job that offers them the best chance to win, the best pay, the best team culture, etc. The manufacturer plugs by drivers are purely a transactional relationship, not a passion. Kyle Busch is the TRD poster boy but also owns classic Chevys. Daniel Suarez is a big air-cooled VW enthusiast. Alex Bowman had a bagged Lexus GS that he posted all over Instagram before he got his Hendrick deal. Jeff Gordon was on a show on Speed years ago where they showed some of his day to day type stuff and he was daily driving a silver Ferrari F430 (does anybody else remember that and know what show it was?). Dale Earnhardt was toying with the idea of going from the GM Goodwrench Chevy to the Ford Quality Care Thunderbird. It's just business on the track.
Yep. Limited manufacturers are the main culprit but it is the only cost-effective option. I'd love for all manufacturers to be able to enter any race (to create brand loyalty) but that is just not possible
 

Ford 222

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Dale Earnhardt was toying with the idea of going from the GM Goodwrench Chevy to the Ford Quality Care Thunderbird.
THAT is exactly what blew my mind and what I was going to bring up when a DE fan brought up his allegiance. I’m sure they will say it was never true but then are they calling Robert Yates a liar?

And then Jeff Gordon. Coming up you kept hearing how he was Ford‘s boy. How do you just throw away the investment they put into you? I get the money part though. And it was the right choice in the long run....for him.
 

gnomesayin

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The only one I can think of is Tony Stewart. It seemed like he despised driving a Toyota the one year he had to.

Agreed, had the same thought. JGR switching to Toyota resulted in Stewart leaving to start his own Cup team. However, this had a lot to do with his existing business relationships at the time in the sprint car world. It wasn't going to work to represent Toyota in NASCAR and do that.

That said, Tony Stewart Racing has fielded sprint cars powered by Chevy, Mopar (Dodge), and Ford engines.
 

Revman

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Obviously, I am 100% manufacturer loyal. I have never been in the showroom of any dealership other than Toyota. I have never owned anything other than a Toyota. I will die never owning anything other than a Toyota. Now, for the drivers....don't give a **** how deeply they feel about the brand, but let me live my fantasy that they care like I do. I will be candid....I ****** spit nails when I see pics of Kyle and his family out on the town in his classic Chevy truck. Having said that, I love that he is building a classic FJ and putting it on a GS chassis with all of the systems. A freaking cool restoration....all possible because Lexus handed him the chassis and engineering support to do it. I think that is what matters to me more than how the drivers feel....it matters to the manufacturer and those who support the manufacturer. I also think while Kyle may not be as passionate about Toyota as I would like, he had better be appreciative. KBM exists because Toyota exists. MY manufacturer is providing him a pretty nice retirement gig. I do think that the drivers care about the PSA's and how the people of that manufacturer treat them.

On a side note, I wonder if Jim Campbell has written that check to Larson yet? I think this is a relationship in the making. Just like Kyle has to be close to Toyota, Larson owes Chevy. Wonder what Larson would do if Campbell said get the hell out of that TRD powered dirt car. That would be really interesting. Would Kyle give him the finger? That was a really nice how he was building on Norman. Doubtful.
 

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Obviously, I am 100% manufacturer loyal. I have never been in the showroom of any dealership other than Toyota. I have never owned anything other than a Toyota. I will die never owning anything other than a Toyota. Now, for the drivers....don't give a **** how deeply they feel about the brand, but let me live my fantasy that they care like I do. I will be candid....I ****** spit nails when I see pics of Kyle and his family out on the town in his classic Chevy truck. Having said that, I love that he is building a classic FJ and putting it on a GS chassis with all of the systems. A freaking cool restoration....all possible because Lexus handed him the chassis and engineering support to do it. I think that is what matters to me more than how the drivers feel....it matters to the manufacturer and those who support the manufacturer. I also think while Kyle may not be as passionate about Toyota as I would like, he had better be appreciative. KBM exists because Toyota exists. MY manufacturer is providing him a pretty nice retirement gig. I do think that the drivers care about the PSA's and how the people of that manufacturer treat them.

On a side note, I wonder if Jim Campbell has written that check to Larson yet? I think this is a relationship in the making. Just like Kyle has to be close to Toyota, Larson owes Chevy. Wonder what Larson would do if Campbell said get the hell out of that TRD powered dirt car. That would be really interesting. Would Kyle give him the finger? That was a really nice how he was building on Norman. Doubtful.
Where does the fierce loyalty come from? What started your passion for Toyota?
When I was a kid my dad had Chevy pickups. That was all it took for me to become a Chevy guy growing up. I still drive mostly GM vehicles but I am not manufacturer loyal , it's just what I know and am comfortable with. When I look for new vehicles, I look at all brands and buy what makes the most sense to me.
As a side note, we just returned from a vacation where we rented a tacoma for the week. I have no idea why people like those things so much. I was glad to to be done with it.
 

Revman

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Where does the fierce loyalty come from? What started your passion for Toyota?
When I was a kid my dad had Chevy pickups. That was all it took for me to become a Chevy guy growing up. I still drive mostly GM vehicles but I am not manufacturer loyal , it's just what I know and am comfortable with. When I look for new vehicles, I look at all brands and buy what makes the most sense to me.
As a side note, we just returned from a vacation where we rented a tacoma for the week. I have no idea why people like those things so much. I was glad to to be done with it.
Thanks for asking. When it came time for me to buy my first car, it had to be reliable...didn't have much money. I bought a base Tercel. I simply could not afford that thing to crap out on me, and it never did. I am an "all in" guy with whatever I do. So, I needed a place to express my passion for the brad...enter racing. From that point on, it's about building relationships. I have never been to another dealer other than my local one. I only pay sticker--I want my salesman to thrive...and if I can't afford sticker, I pick a model that I can. So, when it comes time for service (I am religious about it), or repair (rarely), guess what? I get breaks. Why? Because they know I won't go anywhere else. More loyalty. Moe passion. When I buy, and insist on sticker, guess what? All of a sudden, I start getting money coming back to me. Fees here and there that are rebated during the buying process. On my last purchase, I literally got $5000 back with what I would consider "made up" waiving of fees, etc. to reward my loyalty. They know where I am coming for my next car. So, I am one of these weird dudes who recognizes the symbiotic relationship between what happens on the dealership lot and the expression of that experience on Sundays, and visa versa. Some buy into it, so don't. I do. I get the stock car thing long after the traditional stock car thing was a thing. I don't need much to feel the connectedness...real or made up...who cares? I feel it, and I think it is what the sanctioning body hopes to recapture with the Next Gen.
 

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I will put this here....Todd Gordon on TMD this morning talked about how screwed the Fords were on the wheel opening stuff. When you factor in the development freeze and restricted wind tunnel time (the same metric Hendrick exceeded), the fight back is very difficult if not impossible from his perspective. Interesting stuff...not sure what went into NASCAR's thinking on this one....but that would have been a big waste of money for Chevy to have developed a brand new car after their initial epic fail with the Camaro, and not received a return on their investment.
 

Daytripper

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Thanks for asking. When it came time for me to buy my first car, it had to be reliable...didn't have much money. I bought a base Tercel. I simply could not afford that thing to crap out on me, and it never did. I am an "all in" guy with whatever I do. So, I needed a place to express my passion for the brad...enter racing. From that point on, it's about building relationships. I have never been to another dealer other than my local one. I only pay sticker--I want my salesman to thrive...and if I can't afford sticker, I pick a model that I can. So, when it comes time for service (I am religious about it), or repair (rarely), guess what? I get breaks. Why? Because they know I won't go anywhere else. More loyalty. Moe passion. When I buy, and insist on sticker, guess what? All of a sudden, I start getting money coming back to me. Fees here and there that are rebated during the buying process. On my last purchase, I literally got $5000 back with what I would consider "made up" waiving of fees, etc. to reward my loyalty. They know where I am coming for my next car. So, I am one of these weird dudes who recognizes the symbiotic relationship between what happens on the dealership lot and the expression of that experience on Sundays, and visa versa. Some buy into it, so don't. I do. I get the stock car thing long after the traditional stock car thing was a thing. I don't need much to feel the connectedness...real or made up...who cares? I feel it, and I think it is what the sanctioning body hopes to recapture with the Next Gen.
You must live in a pretty small town if the dealer remembers you. By me the dealer and the service department rarely are even in the same building. I live right outside of NYC and the dealerships could care less about loyalty. When I buy a car I get the best car for me at the best price I can. I could care less about the brand. I also never bring my cars back to the dealer for service unless it is recall or warranty as the dealer service writers are the biggest con artists out there.
 

Ford 222

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They obviously weren’t that invested. All Jeff requested was that Ray Evernham come with him to Cup. They said no and then Rick called Jeff. The rest is history.
I've heard that. I think its used as an excuse for leaving Ford and Bill Davis. He was supposed to go Cup the next year with Bill Davis Racing and Hendrick saw him driving and started asking around. $$ changed that, Plus HMS was a proven winner, BDR was going Cup for first time in 92. They got Bobby Labonte to drive after Jeff flaked.

Bill Davis was pretty upset with the deal, or the falling through of the deal.
 

Ford 222

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Where does the fierce loyalty come from? What started your passion for Toyota?
When I was a kid my dad had Chevy pickups. That was all it took for me to become a Chevy guy growing up. I still drive mostly GM vehicles but I am not manufacturer loyal , it's just what I know and am comfortable with. When I look for new vehicles, I look at all brands and buy what makes the most sense to me.
As a side note, we just returned from a vacation where we rented a tacoma for the week. I have no idea why people like those things so much. I was glad to to be done with it.
I get where you are coming from. The 2 Tacomas I had prior I loved to drive. The current one, while a little better mileage, is CONSTANTLY shifting. It's all it does on a highway with WV hills. I thought something was wrong with it but they all do it. Annoying as hell. But off road and snow it will climb a tree, it will probably hold it's value better than 99% of vehicles out there, and the dealership is awesome. I can't brag on the service department enough. They try, probably have to, because the domestics seem to feel they are entitled to your business. Around here anyway.
 

Mispeedway15

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I get where you are coming from. The 2 Tacomas I had prior I loved to drive. The current one, while a little better mileage, is CONSTANTLY shifting. It's all it does on a highway with WV hills. I thought something was wrong with it but they all do it. Annoying as hell. But off road and snow it will climb a tree, it will probably hold it's value better than 99% of vehicles out there, and the dealership is awesome. I can't brag on the service department enough. They try, probably have to, because the domestics seem to feel they are entitled to your business. Around here anyway.

It’s why I got the off road Colorado instead of the Tacoma. Constantly grabbing gears on the highway was annoying lol. That and the features were trash compared to the Chevy
 

cheesepuffs

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I've heard that. I think its used as an excuse for leaving Ford and Bill Davis. He was supposed to go Cup the next year with Bill Davis Racing and Hendrick saw him driving and started asking around. $$ changed that, Plus HMS was a proven winner, BDR was going Cup for first time in 92. They got Bobby Labonte to drive after Jeff flaked.

Bill Davis was pretty upset with the deal, or the falling through of the deal.
Was leaving Bill Davis either way. They shopped multiple Cup teams so they didn't really need an excuse for BDR.
 

cheesepuffs

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Obviously, I am 100% manufacturer loyal. I have never been in the showroom of any dealership other than Toyota. I have never owned anything other than a Toyota. I will die never owning anything other than a Toyota. Now, for the drivers....don't give a **** how deeply they feel about the brand, but let me live my fantasy that they care like I do. I will be candid....I ****** spit nails when I see pics of Kyle and his family out on the town in his classic Chevy truck. Having said that, I love that he is building a classic FJ and putting it on a GS chassis with all of the systems. A freaking cool restoration....all possible because Lexus handed him the chassis and engineering support to do it. I think that is what matters to me more than how the drivers feel....it matters to the manufacturer and those who support the manufacturer. I also think while Kyle may not be as passionate about Toyota as I would like, he had better be appreciative. KBM exists because Toyota exists. MY manufacturer is providing him a pretty nice retirement gig. I do think that the drivers care about the PSA's and how the people of that manufacturer treat them.

On a side note, I wonder if Jim Campbell has written that check to Larson yet? I think this is a relationship in the making. Just like Kyle has to be close to Toyota, Larson owes Chevy. Wonder what Larson would do if Campbell said get the hell out of that TRD powered dirt car. That would be really interesting. Would Kyle give him the finger? That was a really nice how he was building on Norman. Doubtful.
So like, that time you insisted that the dealership close the hood of an FRS because something said Subaru on it... you don't back Toyota's decision that the Subaru part was the best thing to use in that situation?
 
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Ford 222

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Was leaving Bill Davis either way. They shopped multiple Cup teams so they didn't really need an excuse for BDR.
Not really. BD was under the impression JG was intending to stay. I even read where he and JG went to a Target board room selling their Cup endeavor for the next year. After the meeting, which by accounts went well, Jeff informed Bill he was not driving the car the next year and had signed with HMS.

So that torpedoed the Target sponsorship...
 

Ford 222

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They obviously weren’t that invested. All Jeff requested was that Ray Evernham come with him to Cup. They said no and then Rick called Jeff. The rest is history.
Roush said that, not Ford. Roush saw what Hendrick saw and tried to hire him too in 92. Jeff's step dad said he wanted to keep Evernham with Jeff and Jack said his drivers didn't hire their CCs, he did. Bickford hung up on him. Twice.
 
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2 Sweet

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Do the drivers care what they are driving? Yeah, I think some of them care, but likely not enough to influence a decision that is best for their career or their bank account. I think most drivers and fans alike have their brand preferences, but it's all about the money and what makes the most sense.

My grandpa worked for GM after WWII until his retirement in the mid 80's. He only bought Chevrolets and Buicks. My dad has bought nothing but GM, my brother has owned nothing but GM, and the vast majority of my vehicles have been GM as well. If I'm shopping for a new car for myself, I'm only looking at GM because they offer everything I need. I'm familiar and comfortable with their products that interest me the most (Camaro, Corvette, and truck lineup) and the employee discount is nice. However, I realize families like mine with this kind of brand loyalty are extremely rare nowadays.

Ernie Irvan was my favorite driver when I was really young, and his jump to Ford in '93 is what pushed Jeff Gordon to be my new favorite and I never looked back (but still always cheered for Ernie too). Now that I'm older, I don't think I would care as much. Like if Chase Elliott switched to a Ford team, he's still gonna be my guy. And at this point I'm so loyal to HMS, I will always support them no matter what brand they race. Luckily they are the flagship Chevrolet team, so I'm not worried. :biggrin:
 

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Not really. BD was under the impression JG was intending to stay. I even read where he and JG went to a Target board room selling their Cup endeavor for the next year. After the meeting, which by accounts went well, Jeff informed Bill he was not driving the car the next year and had signed with HMS.

So that torpedoed the Target sponsorship...
I've read the book. BD didn't have a clue but Jeff and his camp knew they were leaving BDR either way. That's my point.
 

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I was a Pontiac guy for many years. I owned Pontiacs until GM dumped them. Now, I'd buy whatever I like that suits by needs to catches my eye. Right now, I drive an Infiniti Q50. Not sure if I would have considered such a thing 10 years ago.
 

Ford 222

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I've read the book. BD didn't have a clue but Jeff and his camp knew they were leaving BDR either way. That's my point.
And they weren't "shopping" other teams. Hendrick went to him, not other way around. That's my point.

Kinda ****** going to Target with BD thinking he was introducing them (and they as well) to the driver, then telling BD on the elevator ride down he wasn't going to be the driver.
 

Revman

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So like, that time you insisted that the dealership close the hood of an FRS because something said Subaru on it... you don't back Toyota's decision that the Subaru part was the best thing to use in that situation?
No I absolutely don't back it any more than I back the Supra being a BMW. In both instances, that was the only way those cars could be brought to market at a price that wasn't insane. I would have preferred that Toyota didn't bring them to market if they couldn't go 100% Toyota. Mr. Toyoda himself recognizes the GR Yaris as special because of its 100% Toyota-ness in contrast to the Supra.
 

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No I absolutely don't back it any more than I back the Supra being a BMW. In both instances, that was the only way those cars could be brought to market at a price that wasn't insane. I would have preferred that Toyota didn't bring them to market if they couldn't go 100% Toyota. Mr. Toyoda himself recognizes the GR Yaris as special because of its 100% Toyota-ness in contrast to the Supra.
So you would rather have less options on the market for customers to choose from, as opposed to having more options to choose from if some of those options are collaborative efforts?
 
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