Racing Entitlement Contracts. That's where it went wrong. Less cars means less depth means less action. Less action means less mainstream news coverage and less casual interest.
Sedans are out of vogue, supercars are unaffordable yet aspirational, crew cab utes are a joke so that leaves suv's (see crew cab statement) and hot hatches. I'm biased, most of my cars have been hot hatches, and my new one will be delivered next week. I used to get canned at the v8's for driving a 'Girls car'(quote) around the 1998-2000 mark when i had my n15ii SSS Pulsar, ironically by folks in vn vacationer wagons and other such vanilla garbage - the actual car guys new that what i was driving had some credibility.
Back then crowds were huge at Phillip island even in the pouring rain, when large fields of privateer vr & vs, ef & el took on the current spec cars of the bigger budget teams, sometimes placing very well. There was racing throughout the field and it was somewhat affordable to compete. There were bumps, slides, spins and occasional carnage too, but honestly i was there to watch drivers have a go, it was the near misses that got me excited. Big budget teams didn't like sharing tv time with low budget plebs and the Konica second tier series was born, splitting the category into haves and have nots.
To top that off the racing has become so professionally processional that i normally watch (on tv) the support races and nap whilst the Supercars are on after about lap two, occasionally opening my eyes when Crompo's heart rate rises.
I'm not saying 'back in my day', remember 12 regular cars for the last Group A season? I do, it was televised at 11pm in a brief and boring highlight package on the sunday night, and I was a Nissan fan. What i am saying is the business of motorsport forgets what fans want, and that is racing, particulary something they either do or can conceivably own. Manufacturers want to sell cars, sponsors want to sell goods and services, I want to buy entertainment in the form of motor racing. V8 engines are fantastic, the sound of a field of v8 engines at full noise on the main straight at Sandown in the grandstand is a wonderful experience and i hope the powers that be can find a way to keep that alive in some form, alas I fear it will be soon reserved for Historics.
And please, not electric cars, not yet.