I may be crazy -- that's a very likely possibility, actually -- but there might be a compromise to the whole aero kit situation.
Do I want them? Absolutely, I yearn for contrasting parts and pieces.
Do I understand why team owners don't? I do, the current spec formula has created close racing and many owners don't want, what is in some eyes, unneeded price increases.
But I don't believe INDYCAR has to make a clear-cut, black-and-white, cut-and-dry decision of yea or nay on whether or not to implement the already 1-year delayed aero kit concept.
Instead of the ability to purchase a complete aero kit, made up of front and rear wings, sidepods, and cowlings, the manufacturers could be given the ability to develop just a few pieces to work in conjunction with the current kit.
Let's be honest, given the parameters the manufacturers can work within, along with price, and just plain aero knowledge, even with the ability to develop an entire kit we wouldn't exactly be getting 1970's-esque innovation, anyway.
Is it an ideal situation? No, but I believe it could work.
Get all the aero techies and engine gurus in a room along with a representative from INDYCAR, GM, Honda, Lotus, Dallara and any other interested supplier and lock 'em up. Come out after a decision has been made, unanimous or not, on two or three pieces that could be made available for design, based on performance, ability to differentiate, and of course price.
Easier said than done, I know, but the effort could be worth it.
If no companies are interested in designing the Dallara built pieces, then that's their prerogative. If the companies develop the pieces but have no buyers, fine, best of luck to the teams. But at least INDYCAR would have made the possibility of discrepancy possible, theoretically cut the $75k per kit price dramatically, and all while keeping at least part of their May 24th promise of aero discrepancy alive.
How much different would a Chevy look from a Honda with the current body kit substituting in manufacturer designed, say, mirrors and rear wings? Or 'sponsor blockers' and sidepods? I don't know, probably very little, but it's a start.