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For myself, Dodge's return to NASCAR Cup competition in 2001 came at the perfect time to create a lifelong superfan. 10 years old, the son of Dodge Dealer, glued to the TV every weekend they were on track. Constantly filling sketch books with drawings of the Dodge Boys hotrods. Twenty years later, I'm doing the same thing, just digitally. That's why I wanted to share these concept designs with the Allpar community.

It's an absolute bummer and a total shame that "America's Performance Brand" has zero presence in America's top racing series. So I wanted to start a discussion. Next Gen is set to bring brand identity back to the sport and we'll find out what that means for the other three on May 5. Street car looks, lower costs, and general excitement around the future of the sport. It's a major opportunity, sitting right in front of us.

So, what would it take for a return to NASCAR? Who leads the charge this time? Besides Gilles and Trostle, who's Stellantis eyes do these need to get in front of? Lets get back to racing.

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I love your concepts and would watch again in a heartbeat! I got into NASCAR similarly to you, started in 2001 with the return of Dodge, and decided to watch until I saw the first Dodge modern NASCAR win. Of course, by then, I was hooked and watched every Cup race from then on. Right up to 2012 when Dodge pulled out (again), and I stopped. I've flipped by the races on TV a few times, but have not watched a race since Brad K won the Cup at the end of 2012. I don't see it happening again, as times have changed too much. As stated, NASCAR has dropped in popularity way too much for this to be feasable. in 2001, Nascar was on it's way up, but peaked around 2007 or so and has been in steady decline ever since. Factors like streaming services, people dropping cable and network TV shows, fanbase falling after Dodge left, classic fans leaving after the multiple format changes and not enough new fans to make up for them leaving. That, combined with industry changing from ICE to Electric and lack of further development for ICE, pressure from environmentalists to stop wasting fuel and causing pollution, pressure from Americans wanting to ban enemy flags at tracks, pressure from Vegans to stop grilling meat at racetracks, etc. Lots of things going on that make it very hard to compete. And, I didn't even get into the fact that (again, already mentioned) we would have to sign a team that has an engine building program to even make this work (and, there are not many of them left anymore).

JS
 

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I feel like they expanded when the going was good, but abandoned the things that were good about the high times. Interest peaking likely in 2004-2007 or so, when we had high times like "Rocketman" Ryan Newman winning the pole 1 out of 4 times and winning 8 races in 03, with Dodge, and Dodge teams expanding from the 10 cars in 2001-2002 to 12-15 cars on track each week, adding Penske, Evernham expanding to 3 cars, Ganassi expanding to 3 cars, etc. Tons of hype about when Dodge would win a race, then when Dodge would win the Cup, and so on. Then, at the height of popularity, they add Toyota. Dodge starts to pull back, and things go down hill. They should have supported and found ways to keep Dodge and Mopar in the sport at all costs, if nothing else but to keep the Mopar fans coming. They let us go away (again) in favor of having 3 or 4 big teams and just a few engine builders to better control the sport. And, way before COVID hit, attendance had been way down for many years.

JS
 
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