The car was developed over a two year period at the Ford Design Center, side by side with the production model. The team at the Ford Design Center hadn’t been actively involved in designing a NASCAR race car since the 1960s, so this presented a unique opportunity to bring the brand back to the sport.
With these new cars, racing fans can once again easily identify which make they’re cheering for. After a public unveiling at Charlotte Motor Speedway in January 2012 and testing throughout last year, the new Gen 6 race car is ready for primetime.
So how did the Ford Design Center and Ford Racing take the features of a stock Fusion and apply them to the anything-but-stock racer? It was a tough challenge, because of the size and proportion differences: the production Fusion is front-wheel drive, while the race car is rear-wheel drive, with a much longer hood and a much lower and wider stance.
The team worked hard on incorporating the production Fusion design identity – details like the shapes of the headlight and fog light openings, the grille and the body-side character lines. Lots of time was spent developing the proper aerodynamics, using both wind tunnels and computational fluid dynamics. The final result is a race car that has the look and feel of the production Fusion.
While the race car has a production-inspired exterior, it is another creature altogether underneath the hood. The NASCAR Fusion race car sports an FR9 engine that produces a cool 850 horsepower when unrestricted.
Ford Racing is looking to continue a great run at the Daytona 500, where Fusion race cars have won three of the past four events. So keep an eye out for Ford teams from Roush Fenway Racing, Penske Racing, Wood Brothers Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports, Germain Racing and Front Row Motorsports, who will all debut their new Fusion race cars when the green flag drops this weekend.
Show your support for the new 2013 NASCAR Fusion by grabbing a Racing badge, or snag the badge of your favorite driver. And be sure to tune in on Sunday to see this sleek new machine make its racing debut!