NASCAR MEDIA TOUR: New Generation 6 Car
The NASCAR season is almost here, and the Cup drivers will be using a new car this year. It's called Generation 6.
The move to the generation 6 cars has been in the works for close to three years.
"It was something we needed to do for our fans. They have expressed a displeasure, they are not attracted to the cars and we're a car business obviously," said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR Vice President of Competition.
Unlike the previous model where all the cars were identical in style and shape, the Chevy SS, Ford Fusion, and Toyota Camry are different.
"It is a really cool looking race car and they look like Camry's and they look like the Camry you can get at a dealership with of course a lot of muscle thrown on them," said Mark Martin, co-driver of number 55 for MWR.
In 1959 Lee Petty used this Oldsmobile Super 88 car. That was Generation 1. Fast forward all the way to today in 2013 and those are now the cars of the future.
"I made a 25 lap run the other night at Charlotte and I'm not ashamed to tell you I was breathing hard. It's so fast. Speeds are so fast. It's quite a thrill," said Jeff Burton, driver of number 31 for RCR.
The new cars have increased safety features and they're slightly lighter than the old ones but since they're not identical, will that lead to advantages and disadvantages for race teams?
"Absolutely, it remains to be seen. The manufacturers were handed a certain set of parameters to work within and a certain set of numbers to not be out above or below and they picked where they needed to be," said Pemberton.
Drivers tested the cars at Daytona and they've already had wrecks - one started by Dale Earnhardt, Junior.
"Well he saw firsthand that they didn't line up too good but we're all going to find out. I know that," said Clint Bowyer, driver of number 15 for MWR.
NASCAR CEO Brian France says they'll determine the success of the new car based on lead changes on race day and driver feedback but since the main reason they made the change was for the fans - maybe another way to determine its success - is how many cars are sold at local dealerships.
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