Welcome to The Grid, R&T's quick roundup of the auto industry and motorsports news you should know this morning.
Since 2001, Jimmie Johnson has driven the number 48 Lowe's Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports. That association, one that has combined for seven championships and 83 wins, at the conclusion of the 2018 season.
Lowe's has announced that it will not be renewing its sponsorship of Johnson's car or Hendrick Motorsports in 2019. It's certainly a blow for NASCAR since Lowe's is one of the longest term sponsors in NASCAR with a huge investment and presence. However, it's not the end of the world. Johnson is one of the most successful racers in NASCAR history and one of the sport's most marketable stars. Just because the sport is losing Lowe's, which has likely done all it can with NASCAR in marketing, it's likely to gain one or a number of great sponsors to back Johnson. It'll be ok!
Some automakers have been releasing concepts without steering wheels. This Ford recall is for cars that are unintentionally losing their steering wheels, which is not a feature.
The built from 2013 until 2018. If you own one of the cars, please get it fixed ASAP.
Hamilton on Red Bull
Lewis Hamilton has basically dominated F1 for the entirety of its hybrid era. However, the four-time champ believes that of the grid for the Australian Grand Prix.
The British driver believes Red Bull could gain up to 0.4 seconds per lap and have the quickest car on the grid. Of course, Hamilton could just be trying to downplay his own chances. Many teams, including Mercedes, didn't try to find out one-lap pace in winter testing, so it's unknown just how quick the Mercedes actually is. Our guess? Very.