Since Honda is the only one of the three Japanese automakers with tenure in big-league racing in America, it's the only one to have established programs set up to involve its dealers.
For starters, the marketing budgets for the zone are beefed up the month of the race, to allow for more promotional tie-ins.
Honda dealers located near a race site can rent a racing show car (usually last year's model) for about $500 a day, to give the dealership a sales link to the event.
Customers can even climb into the car's cockpit and be photographed in a Nomex suit.
When the race is over, the self-contained display folds up into a panel truck and drives to the next site.
Honda also provides its dealers with a videotape of last season's CART championship run, to be played on TV screens in the dealership.
Thomas Elliott, American Honda executive vice president, tries to keep it in perspective: 'We don't sell race cars. If a guy comes to look at cars, the racer may get his attention, but we want him to look at Accords.'
Honda also is trying to get dealer employees motivated through racing. As is typical, top salespeople and managers are rewarded with trips to the race and the hospitality suite. Toyota and Infiniti have similar employee incentives.
But Honda is looking at the service side as well, by having its top local mechanics be 'pit crew members for a day.' While the mechanic won't change tires or fuel the race car during the race itself, he will be active in the pits during preliminaries and qualifying. Elliott wants that program to be operational by the end of this season.
Toyota may be new to racing in CART, but it's an old hand at sponsoring races. This season, Toyota is sponsoring six CART races. Nearby dealers are provided bushels of tickets to give away to customers who come in for test drives.
But Honda's Elliott notes: 'We'd rather win races than sponsor them.'