The new car is currently running tests, driver calls for more power
For 2022, NASCAR is taking a huge turn. The Next Gen car makes it’s debut and is set to flip the entire sport on it’s lid.
The new car is a spec chassis. The days of teams building and developing their own cars, are gone. It’s expected to be a massive cost saver.
Beyond costs, the cars have more drag. At the same time, NASCAR has tested multiple engine packages, specifically at 1.5-mile tracks.
In previous seasons, teams used a 550 engine package with a tapered spacer to limit the power on most 1.5-mile track. This new car has wider tires and more downforce.
The use of the 550 package with the new car creates a situation where drivers aren’t lifting at all in a recent test at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
However, in the recent test, NASCAR tested multiple engine packages. One of those is the 670hp package that will be used at all tracks under 1-mile.
According to Harvick, NASCAR is looking into using the short track package at 1.5-mile tracks as well…
Kevin Harvick in favor of more horsepower for Next Gen
“They’re just not at the particular speed that they need to. From my standpoint, there’s not any issue with the 670 package,” Kevin Harvick stated during Champions Week.
“Having to lift off the throttle in three and four definitely made an improvement. Any time that you can let off the throttle is a good thing for racing.”
NASCAR tested several different aero packages with minor tweaks.
“Nothing did as much as the engine. There’s definitely some things that we tried, that everybody wanted to try.”
“The engine’s a must, in my opinion.”
“I don’t think there’s anybody that doesn’t want more horsepower. Just because of the fact that the [new] car has more drag and it’s slower than the current car.”
“Everyone’s expectation, from the driver’s standpoint, probably would vote for more power. The easiest thing to do is make it the same as the short track engine package. To make it as easy on the engine shop as possible.”
“If I was in charge, I would send that press release out, yesterday. That we’re going to go to more horsepower. I’d put 1,000 horsepower in it but I don’t know that I’d have a lot of support on that one, outside of the drivers.”
Harvick was also asked if the rear spoiler should be reduced.
“The car, that’s going to be a work in progress. You definitely have all the right people involved now, with the team engineers. Everyone that is involved now they’re the people that can help solve the problem.”
“The Gen 6 car, 5, 4, whatever car you want, was always an evolution. This is an evolution as well.”
“It’s really the first time that you had everybody on the race track, together. Charlotte is probably the worst case scenario as far the way the tires fall off, the cycles on the tires, the way the car feels and the bumps. If you can make it drive good at Charlotte, it’s probably going to drive good at most of the male-and-a-half tracks.”
NASCAR has multiple NASCAR Next Gen tests on the horizon. That includes another multi-day test at Charlotte Motor Speedway.