Views from the Grandstand

Kay Bell | December 01, 2011

Welcome, ’wagen

Volkswagen wants to overtake Toyota as the most popular passenger carmaker worldwide and is looking to raise its profile by getting back into racing in North America. Volkswagen execs considered developing a presence in NASCAR but decided they’d get more bang for their buck in either the IndyCar Series or the American Le Mans Series. The upside to the ALMS is that VW could race cars that look like their street vehicles in the GT classes. The IndyCar Series, which the VW chiefs went out of their way to call “attractive,” would give VW twice as many races as the ALMS per season as well as valuable mainstream exposure at the Indianapolis 500. My thought is that Audi (which is owned by VW) has already proved everything the company needs to prove in ALMS, so Volkswagen would be better off developing its own engine and chassis to join Honda, Lotus and Chevrolet in the IndyCar Series.

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