NASCAR Next Gen car seen with wrap

This is the first time we’re seeing a race-like wrap with headlights on any Next Gen machine

For 2022, NASCAR is moving in an entirely different direction and it’s exciting. The new car was initially going to be launch next month in Daytona. Unfortunately, the world was paused in 2020 which pushed the debut of the new car back a full season.

The new chassis design will reduce the aerodynamic dependencies with overall downforce being reduced. The front splitter is off the ground, finally. Sideforce has been trimmed. The rear end now has a diffuser, designed to strategically throw air on a trailing car.

The tires are significantly wider. Bigger tires have created the opportunity for softer tires. Soft tires means more falloff and better racing over 500 miles.

The image below was shared by NASCAR’s Josh Hamilton. He posted it with a quote from Henry Jones Jr reading, “It belongs in a museum.” That’s likely hinting that this Next Gen car could be moving to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

Related: NASCAR Next Gen car opens the door for much softer tires

P1 prototype

There’s been three versions of the new race car. Those are labeled P1, P2 and P3 while the P stands for prototype. What you’re looking at here is the P1 Next Gen car.

P1 is the first prototype design of the Next Gen chassis. At this point, it’s been essentially retired.

If you look closely, you’ll notice there are 5 lug nuts. Rules for 2022 will be a single lug nut. The single lugnut provides extra strength and has allowed NASCAR to change the rim style on the new car. The first version of the prototype didn’t feature the single lugnut.

The P1 is not a manufacture specific car. To date, we’ve yet to see what the Next Gen car will actually look like. The noses and tail on every Next Gen photo so far has featured a generic body shape.

NASCAR Next Gen – manufacture body shapes?

Manufactures are currently working on their individual body designs which will drastically change the look the car for each make. NASCAR will then host closed tests with each manufacture before images are released. Those tests are set to begin in 2-3 months.

The plan is for a late Spring or early Summer release of the manufacture body shapes of the Next Gen car. That’s when you’ll see what the Next gen really looks like.

Yet, this is the first image we’re seeing of a Next Gen machine with headlights and a somewhat completed wrap design. As for the number placement, it’s rumored that NASCAR will be moving that direction in the coming years. The numbers were pushed back for the All-Star race in a similar style, as a test.

However, just because the #22 is pushed back on this wrap, likely doesn’t mean anything. Over the years, we’ve seen many previews of upcoming cars which featured a similar layout, with large door signage. There’s probably nothing to read into with the ’22 being pushed back on the door for this P1 wrap.

NASCAR Next Gen car

NASCAR Next Gen Car - 2022
NASCAR Next Gen Car – 2022

Click here to see photos from December of the P3 Next Gen car at Daytona .