Sport: Carfair

The cars that rolled onto the hard sands of Daytona Beach last week for the eighth annual safety and performance trials of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Rating, Inc. were—as the admen promised—roomier, lower and more powerfully propelled than ever before. To some of the spectators who crowded the dunes and gabbled knowingly of racing cams and fuel injection and four-barrel carburetors, the competition was a sporting event. To auto-industry pitchmen, it was the beginning of a multimillion-dollar campaign designed to keep a performance-happy public popeyed and buying.

This year, as...

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