NASCAR Officials Provide Major Update on the Development Phase of Next Gen Car

Published 02/02/2021, 10:33 AM EST
HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JANUARY 15: Erik Jones tests the Next Gen car at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)


Without the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, the NASCAR Next Gen car could well have been out on track for the 2021 Cup Series season itself. Regardless, the organizers have worked hard to ensure that the same schedule for 2022 stays on track.

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A bit of positive news has now emerged as all three manufacturers, i.e. Toyota, Chevrolet, and Ford have had their Next Gen car designs approved by NASCAR. The tire testing sessions alongside the wheel-force data collections will also happen in the course 2021.

A report by the official NASCAR website states, “John Probst, NASCAR Senior Vice President of Racing Innovation, indicated that all three manufacturers — Chevrolet, Ford, and Toyota — have had their designs for the Next Gen car approved.

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Proposed wheel-force data collection test for NASCAR Next Gen car in late March, said Probst

“The car will return to the track March 16-17 at Richmond Raceway, Probst said, and a handful of Goodyear tire tests were planned beyond that. All three automakers are set to have models on the track at the same time during a proposed test for wheel-force data collection at Martinsville Speedway in late March.”

HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JANUARY 15: Erik Jones tests the Next Gen car at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

The prototypes’ testing required ironing out the finer details in these models. Playing a massive role in the development was the drivers’ feedback on specific segments of these next generation cars.

Probst commented and said, “In hindsight, when we were on target for 2021 and now we’ve gone through all of this, we look back, and boy, we probably would’ve had our tongues hanging out right now if we were to launch it in 2021, which we could’ve done.

Few Cup Series drivers have had the opportunity to test some prototypes

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“I think we’re certainly on schedule. We’re probably actually being able to spend a little more time since we pushed it out to 2022, focusing on a lot of the line-item costs,” concluded Probst.

PHOENIX, AZ – NOVEMBER 11: Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford, walks away from pit road following an on-track incident during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Can-Am 500 at ISM Raceway in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Following the 2020 Cup Series season, NASCAR had requested some racers to undertake testing duties for the Next Gen prototypes. Martin Truex Jr, Kurt Busch, and Chris Buescher all tested at Charlotte, delivering pointers on areas for improvement.

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Therefore, it sounds like things are coming together ahead of the competitive debut in 2022. NASCAR should hence take pride in all of its efforts in this regard, despite the ongoing tough times.

MORE – Can Kyle Busch End Denny Hamlin’s NASCAR Daytona 500 Dominance With a Win in 2021?

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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