“They’re Going to be a Little Quicker” – NASCAR Analyst on the Impact of the Single Lug Nuts on the Next Gen Cars

Published 10/23/2021, 3:18 PM EDT
HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JANUARY 15: Erik Jones tests the Next Gen car at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)


In 2022, the next-gen cars make their debut in the NASCAR Cup Series. One of the major changes involves the move away from five lug nuts to a single lug nut. Obviously, this will drastically alter the manner in which pit stops are performed in race situations. In light of this, NASCAR analyst Larry Mac spoke about how much the new wheels and the single lug nut will affect racing.

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He said, “We continue migrate closer to a production car. Production cars essentially have aluminum wheels. That’s one thing that led them to have to go to one single wheel lock. If we stayed with the aluminum wheel, and you went with  five lug nuts that’s actually against the wheel itself. Aluminum it expands more with heat, than a steel rim. I think you would have issues with the lug nuts coming loose. That’s why we went with that center lug nut. One thing that fans seem concerned, pit stops are going to change, they’re going to be a little quicker.

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What else did he say about the NASCAR cars?

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However, there will still be the single jackman to service the car, so the stops will only be marginally faster. One thing is for sure, it will be a massive change for the teams and drivers to get used to. However, they will all try their hardest to adapt and make the most of the new system.

Sep 26, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Martin Truex Jr. (19) during the South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Who knows, it could also push the pit crews to try and pull off faster stops than their rivals. On another note, it should hopefully prevent drivers from incurring too many loose lug nut penalties. This will certainly be a relief for many drivers and teams, as a few of them have often failed post-race inspection too many times. For now, everyone is focused on seeing on the remainder of the 2021 season and crowning a champion.

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Dhruv George

12314 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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