Electric NASCAR motors
Rumors have begun to fly.
At this point, that’s all it is. Whispers in the garage area. If you don’t like speculation, you should change the station now. Though, if you’re curious about rumors and possibilities, this is going to get interesting for you.
Those whispers are reportedly coming directly from NASCAR executives. That part is ALMOST fact, the electric talk HAS BEEN reported, though it’s not confirmed from any NASCAR quotes.
I first heard of this over a month ago. Yet, I’m honestly still hesitant to tell you about it. Though, I’ve decided the scenario’s are too fascinating for me to just flat ignore.
The electric NASCAR motor talk doesn’t surround the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series division. The discussion is about the lower-tier series of NASCAR stock car racing.
Lets talk about the how and why of electric NASCAR motors.
What blasphemy is this NASCAR electric talk?
Why would NASCAR even consider the idea of electric motors? It could be many things. Here’s how it would make sense…
1) In the name of cutting costs
Next year, NASCAR will introduce a spec motor in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. That new motor is all about cutting costs. Nothing would cut the cost of a high-performance engine quicker than going electric.
Some of the most well-known NASCAR Truck Series teams are bailing from the sport. Red Horse Racing has been there, since 2004. They are now gone. Starting in 2018, Brad Keselowski Racing will pull their trucks from the sport as well.
It costs between $4-5 million per truck to field a full-time NCWTS operation. That’s outrageous!
They’ve already gone electric in the Formula world. The Formula E racing circuit caps team spending at $3.5 million. Alternatively, their gas powered / electric turbo booster button counterpart teams in the F1 division spend around $500 million per season.
Now that’s not a totally fair comparison. There’s a lot more spec in Formula E while F1 is more or less about throwing money into a fire pit and hoping some now found speed is the net result.
But, this very thing could be the direction NASCAR is considering for a lower-tier series. In recent years, NASCAR has picked up many ideas from the Formula circuits. Knockout qualifying, for example, came from F1.
2) Kids don’t think pollution is cool
That’s just fact. Our sport is frowned upon to the younger crowd. That will become a big problem as our coal burning, fire breathing, diesel crowd dies out.
Would those kids be more interested in electric? Maybe. It would certainly help them get passed their overall hatred, as far as pollution and such.
Don’t think for a second that these motors produce no noise at all. Though, the sound of an electric motor is a lot like horrific squelch owl. So, it would more than likely just give these millennial, gender-neutral kids something else to complain about.
This is pure speculation. That’s all it is.
Brian France has confirmed that NASCAR is speaking to two auto manufactures about joining the sport, that part is fact. Though, he’s yet to say which two. What if Tesla was one?
It would actually make sense. Tesla is an American owned auto maker. Two of the four American makers are already in the sport. Tesla and Dodge are the one’s missing. Dodge was in talks of re-joining the sport over the winter. Though, it’s since been speculated that those talks have stalled with Dodge.
Related: Dodge returning to NASCAR?
Could Tesla be one of the two? I honestly find it interesting how secretive the new manufacture talk has been. That’s not usually the case. The conversations have been announced for well over a year. Yet, we still have no named auto makers from these conversations.
Tesla is headquartered in Palo Alto, CA and in 2016 they generated revenue of 7 billion. In fact, every year since 2010, the revenue has greatly increased. They are again on-pace for another record year. After nearly 15 years, they are finally approaching black numbers. The budget for racing, is here.
Recently, in 2015, Tesla dipped it’s toes in the auto racing industry. Their first venture? An electric hill-climbing race car.
Related: Tesla hill climbing race car
If Tesla is the other auto-maker at the new NASCAR manufacture table, it would make a lot of sense that electric motor talk has begun to surface as well. Like it or not, electric is the future of the automobile. The future is here.
It would make too much sense for NASCAR to start prepping for that direction as well. What would Tesla run? They wouldn’t likely enter the MENCS division, maybe the body would. But, they certainly wouldn’t have a gas vs electric class of cars on track.
If Tesla joined NASCAR it would likely be gifted it’s own electric class. Would that be a new class? Would it be a conversion for the K&N, Trucks or Xfinity?
Other auto manufactures also have electric cars as well. If it’s the future of the automobile, don’t you think these manufactures would be interesting in placing them in front of the American auto racing fans?
Wouldn’t they be interested in a head-to-head competition with Tesla? It’s not that the Palo Alto maker would be the only electric NASCAR race car represented in the game.
Tesla reception by NASCAR fans?
NASCAR fans aren’t known for being open to change, in any aspect. They hate it, almost as much as they hate Toyota.
Related: NASCAR fans gate Toyota
Oh and make no mistake about it, Tesla is a bad ass beast of an automobile. Just not in the traditional sense of the term ‘beast’. Tesla’s are light as a feather and quicker off the line than anything you’ve got sitting in your garage, that’s fact.
The Tesla Model S P100D is world’s quickest production car. It goes 0-60 mph in 2.5 sec. Though, we’re not drag racing here, so stop and start speed isn’t very important.
Either way, as of now, electric is quicker. That’s a game changer for the production side of the auto industry. So, how long will it take for NASCAR to embrace it on the racing side? Formula already has and by the sound of the whispers, it sounds like NASCAR is considering the same direction.
Will gas engines still exist for racing, sure. But, they won’t be here forever, sad facts. If the production side of the industry goes full electric, which they will, who’s going to build the gas powered engines for racing? It likely won’t be the manufactures.
Unfortunately, it would be a smart move on NASCAR’s part to create an electric class. Nothing wrong with investing in the preservation of their future. As much as I profoundly dislike saying it, electric is the future.
“It could revolutionize the sport. It could revolutionize ground transportation,” Bill Nye the Science dude said that almost two years ago.
Though, it appears the production car market has just revolutionized itself. Is NASCAR planning to play catch up? It sounds like it.
I’m not sure how receptive NASCAR fans would be of Tesla. They hate Toyota. I’m told that’s not because it’s American made but because it’s not American owned. Tesla is American made and American owned, two boxes checked.
Would Tesla get a pass from the NASCAR fans? At this point, That’s what I’m mostly curious about.