Really, it all sounds exactly as it was set out quite a long time ago, and you can't argue with sticking to a business plan if it ain't broke
A long time ago, they said that it would be priced in a way that would attract real racecar drivers and, more specifically, not be appealing to casual simmers. At least that's how I read their website, anyway. They've remained true to that.
They're in the enviable position where they're not busting for money, and clearly the uptake (or potentially not) of iR is not in any way make or break for them. Quite frankly, those are the best projects. LFS is very much like that, the way I see it, too.. and the product, at the end of the day, is more oriented to being very good rather than being mass-market appealing. iR have the same philosophy (but obviously a lot more manpower/resources) and it does sound like that permeates the product.
Despite the fact that I'll almost certainly never participate in iR, because the money politics are offensive to me personally, I can comprehend the reasoning behind it and it sounds like it could work, provided there is enough uptake - something that could happen initially and fall off later, too.. we are headed for tight times. It may never make a cent of profit (despite asking us for lots of them), but I don't think that's the mission with iR anyway. I hope they succeed