NASCAR is set to publicly reveal its first-ever EV racecar at the opening event of the 2024 season at the L.A. Coliseum in February.
The organization confirmed earlier this week that it would bring the EV prototype, which has been undergoing some testing measures for some time, to the Clash, an event that has long been the kickoff event for the NASCAR season.
Motorsports are still widely popular in the United States, and as EVs have become more mainstream over the past several years, so have the electric racing leagues that highlight the competitive use of an electric car.
NASCAR has not been a promotion that has indicated it will dive head-first into EVs, however. While the organization has made various changes to its stock cars since its first years in the 1940s, these modifications have mostly been made to make the vehicles safer for drivers and improve competition.
While the sport is a far cry from what it once was and lacks any true star power, NASCAR is undoubtedly considering a step toward modernization with the debut of its EV racecar.
A leak from u/crypto6g on the NASCAR subreddit shows what the potential design could look like:
It is not far off from what traditional stock cars in NASCAR look like now, although it features an exceptionally high spoiler, which increases downforce and improves handling and speed.
Does it mean NASCAR is headed to EVs?
According to Forbes, just because NASCAR is planning to unveil an electric design in a little under a month, there are no real plans for the promotion to consider an ultimate switch to EVs.
Although NASCAR is not as big as it once was, it still has a group of loyal fans, and the sport maintains good relationships with the OEMs whose names are donned on the stock cars.
The OEMs, like Ford and Chevrolet, still maintain the idea that the cars used by drivers on Sundays work as advertising for fans. “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday,” is the motto.
Automakers hope that the car that takes the checkered flag on Sunday might translate to selling some vehicles on Monday. If a fan’s favorite driver wins, the OEMs hope that the victory could encourage them to come to a showroom and purchase a new vehicle.
Another big piece of the puzzle is the fact that fans of NASCAR actually go to hear the roar of the engines.
“From our point of view…When it comes to the adaptation of zero-carbon or electrification (hydrogen) is much more suited to motorsports than battery electric ever will be because the fact is that the fans are not going to embrace no noise,” David Wilson, Group VP and President of Toyota Racing Development in the U.S. said.
NASCAR is more likely to consider hydrogen before EVs, but Wilson believes the sport “could be supplemented with some sort of a hybrid component.”
I’d love to hear from you! If you have any comments, concerns, or questions, please email me at email@example.com. You can also reach me on Twitter @KlenderJoey, or if you have news tips, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.