But those "other games" haven't had (until recently) the same high-end manufacturer licenses that GT has. It's been a real concern for manufacturers with high-end names to protect. PD can't very well have damage modeling for some cars and not others. It's an all or nothing proposition. Either all manufacturers agree, or the feature gets left out.
Even more, PD agrees with them. It's only very recently that more and more manufacturers have gotten on board with damage modeling as part of the licensing agreements. This has been a long time coming all around and is absolutely not just PD's decision or just "more excuses."
From PD's perspective, the choice has been between signing key licenses, or having damage modeling. In the past, they've always chosen to go with having more licenses. GT5 is a big deal just for this reason alone. It'll be the first time that many of these manufacturers have given the go-ahead for damage modeling. That's a big deal for all kinds of reasons that are much bigger than just GT5. It shows just how seriously video games are being treated now.