R&D, also known as research and development; is the work a business performs to innovate, introduce, or improve a product. In our business, R&D is one of our largest expenses, as with various other companies in the aftermarket. We wanted to take a moment in this blog to discuss R&D costs; which often go overlooked, unnoticed, or unrecognized. For this particular blog I will be going over our fuel starvation door for the FRS/BRZ/GT86 and WRX. I chose this part because it is one of the components that often customers think is expensive for what it is.
For the record, I get it. It is a small component, not terribly difficult to make, why does it cost $80? Please read the following with an open mind and realize there may be some part of the product development cycle that may not have been considered previously.
Taking you back before the product existed, there was a common issue with high-g left-hand turns. Multiple other, well qualified, companies had looked into this issue, attempt to solve it, and could not rectify the issue without an external surge tank. These cars were suffering from fuel starvation at over 3/4 – 7/8 full, only getting a few laps in on track before starvation occurred.
Gathering the Puzzle:
To better understand the system as a whole, we had to purchase components. We purchased a used gas tank for $300 from a local. We purchased the fuel pump assembly for $100 from a salvage yard, and we purchased a WRX fuel basket for $60 from an online Subaru parts warehouse. At this point, we’re about $460 into the project without putting any time and effort into figuring out what is going on to cause the fuel starvation.
Daily Cost of Doing Business: