It’s a beautiful morning to wake up and smell the roses. Monterey Car Week has kicked off, it’s summer in the northern hemisphere, and your morning digest of important, bite-sized pieces of car news is here. Today, motorsport could be part of the Olympics, car part sourcing just got more stringent, the Nissan Frontier gets an extension of life, and more. Welcome back to The Morning Dump.
Ask What Your Country Can Hoon For You
Planning for the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Olympics is well underway, and Reuters reports that some new sports are on the table. If you’re wondering what that has to do with a car website, I’ve bolded the really important bit below for emphasis.
Flag football and cricket have been shortlisted along with baseball-softball, lacrosse, breakdancing, karate, kickboxing, squash and motorsport.
Motorsport, huh? Hot damn. Whenever the Olympics decide to add a new sport, it must first pass approval by local organizers, at which point it gets kicked up to the International Olympic Committee for top-level confirmation. Then, and only then, is a new Olympic sport born. As Jalopnik notes, the FIA has pushed for karting to be included at the Games for a few years now, so it could be something along those lines.
Regardless of what form it takes, the prospect of motorsport being on the roster is cause for excitement. Sure, the Race of Champions is amazing and conceptually similar, but making motorsport an Olympic sport would open it up to entirely new audiences. I say the more people interested in going fast, the better.
Supply Chains Just Got More Complicated, But For A Good Reason
Cheap car parts imported from China are about to experience new complications. While this doesn’t sound great for consumers, it’s actually a good thing. See, China isn’t exactly known for a spotless human rights record, and Reuters reports that America is stepping up enforcement of sourcing regulations.
Increased inspection of products destined for auto assembly plants by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) could signal difficult times ahead for automakers who will need solid proof that their supply chains are free of links to a region where the U.S. believes Chinese authorities have established labor camps for Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups.
When legislation targeting products that may have been made with forced Uyghur labor was established last year, it initially focused on stuff like clothes and solar panels. Now, it’s reportedly expanding to auto parts, raw materials, and lithium-ion batteries. Stuff that could really hit the auto industry hard if the proper documentation isn’t in place, as violations could slow the trickle of parts needed to build new cars. Even in a rebounding market, it’s still worth it—consumer ease shouldn’t come above others’ well-being when ethical issues exist.
Now, before you go accusing me of pointing out other countries’ problems while conveniently ignoring issues at home, just know that it goes both ways. For one, I’d prefer if my license plates weren’t made using prison labor. Everyone deserves to work voluntarily and with dignity regardless of background.
If you fancy the new Nissan Frontier but don’t yet have the scratch for one, don’t worry—you may have just been given a little more time. Automotive News has obtained an internal memo that claims “production of the current-generation midsize Frontier at Nissan’s factory in Canton, Miss., has been extended two years beyond its previously expected redesign, now carrying into the 2029 model year.”
So, what spurred the change? As with most extended model cycles today, it may have something to do with the shifting tides of propulsion. Basically, Nissan may need more time as it builds out EV production:
In the memo, Nissan didn’t offer suppliers a reason for the life cycle extension, but one supplier briefed on the matter, who asked not to be identified, told Automotive News that the previously planned changeover would have come just as the Canton factory is gearing up to build new Nissan and Infiniti electric vehicles.
Simplifying the introduction of new models assembled at the same plant is an entirely prudent reason for extending the Frontier’s lifecycle, and it’s not like the Frontier is on the bleeding edge of midsize truck tech. The last one had a 17-year model cycle, and the new one is refreshingly old-school compared to the likes of the Toyota Tacoma, Ford Ranger, and GMC Canyon.
Faraday Future, Which Still Exists (???), Delivers Its First $309,000 Car To A Customer
I bet you haven’t thought about Faraday Future in a while. Electrek reports that Faraday Future’s first consumer model has finally been delivered, the first $309,000 FF91 2.0 Futurist Alliance (yes, seriously). Does this mean that Faraday Future has shaken off its tumultuous past of executives leaving, models being delayed, and the founder filing for personal bankruptcy? Hardly. It seems that Faraday Future is riding the coattails of all-AI everything, the popular tech buzzword of the moment that has an uncertain future. Per an earlier press release:
As FF officially enters the 2.0 stage of development, the Company believes that the future development of products and technology in the spire mobility industry will be characterized by FF’s four new trends of All-AI, All-Hyper, All-Ability, and Co-Creation.
In case it wasn’t blatantly obvious, none of these words actually mean anything. Sure, they’re shiny, but cars don’t run on hype. Will artificial intelligence buzzwords be enough to differentiate Faraday Future from the litany of ultra-luxury EVs coming to market? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
(Editor’s Note: I love that somehow, Faraday Future survived long enough to get in on the AI hype. Bullshit just comes naturally to that company. —PG)
If motorsport makes it into the Olympics, what specific disciplines would you like to see? While something along the lines of karting makes sense, Olympic rallycross sounds like it could be just the tightest thing ever. However, maybe you’re a touring car fan, or want to go completely bonkers with something like Stadium Super Trucks. There really are no bad options here.
(Photo credits: Garage 56, Amazon, Nissan, Faraday Future)
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