While NASCAR officials have hinted at a switch to hybrid powertrains around 2024, it appears the organization is simultaneously planning to launch an electric race series.
Popular NASCAR news website Kickin' the Tires in July posted presentation slides detailing a demonstration electric series. The slides are alleged to be from an official presentation and detail plans to have prototype electric race cars conducting a demonstration run as soon as the 2023 Busch Clash scheduled for February 5 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
The slides also detail plans to have a series for the prototype cars up and running before 2023 is out, with the races likely to be aligned with rounds from the premier Cup Series. There would be two races at each round—one on the Saturday and another on the Sunday—and each would last 30 minutes.
Interestingly, the slides also detailed some specs for the prototype electric race cars. They would run on a 900-volt electrical system and feature three electric motors delivering a combined output of more than 1,000 hp. There would be further development of the race cars in phases, using lessons learned from the demonstration series and other electric series such as Formula E.
When asked about the slides, NASCAR replied to Kickin' the Tires with the statement “As we have mentioned in the past, we are exploring the potential for an EV demonstration series. We are currently working with our OEM partners and race teams as the program progresses.”
It's not the first time NASCAR has hinted at an electric series. During a press conference in March, Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR's chief operating officer, said the organization was looking at a demonstration series for electric race cars, particularly in view of OEMs heavily pushing the technology.