Austin Dillon Give Us A Look At The Gen-7 NASCAR Cup Car, What Did We See?

Austin Dillon and Richard Childress Racing have been tasked by NASCAR to do the initial testing of the Gen-7 car. Why were Dillon and RCR give this task? Missing the playoffs which gave them ample time to focus on this project combined with an abundance of building on the RCR campus made them the perfect candidate.

Dillon and team are testing the Gen-7 car this week, specifically Tuesday and Wednesday. The test is closed to the public and media but that didn’t stop us from seeing what the car looks like.

Even though NASCAR didn’t allow media into the test Austin Dillon gave everyone their first look at the Gen 7 car. It looks like a race car, has four wheels, a spoiler, a god damn splitter, and a windshield, it’s a race car. Keep in mind the body on the car is a generic body and isn’t OEM specific. It meets the aero requirements NASCAR is looking for. We did notice a few things though.

Key Things To Look At

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A few things to break down from this picture:

  • The most noticeable thing is the rear diffuser. Up until now NASCAR has never messed with a rear diffuser, a number of open-wheel series have but NASCAR never has. This is aimed at helping clean up the dreaded dirty air we hear drivers complain about on a weekly basis. It will be interesting to see a profile shot of this diffuser and see exactly where it lines up with the body, etc.
  • The spoiler is still a barn door, not great. NASCAR has doubled down on this high downforce package so it’s not a surprise.
  • The greenhouse area on this car appears to be smaller specifically around the back window. Obviously this isn’t the body that will be on the car but by the looks of the roll-cage inside the area appears to be tighter. That would make sense considering NASCAR has said they want this gen car to look more like the road car.
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  • The most noticeable thing in this picture has to be the wheels. Goodyear/NASCAR are putting 18″ rims on these cars. What we didn’t know until this point is if they’d be the traditional steel rims or if they’d be able to design them. Now we know. NASCAR appears to be moving to a spoke design which is an interesting move. Naturally, strength questions come to mind with a wheel like this. But they do seem to be committed to the whole “make it look like a road car” approach.
  • Another area to look at is the side skirt, specifically behind the front tire. The skirt appears to be angled in towards the underside of the car. So are they using this to channel air under the car and allow are out from behind the wheel? Really need to see a drawing of this.
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  • Aero ducts will be built into the Gen-7 car. We knew that though.
  • It appears the aero duct tested at the All-Star Race will be implemented in this car in some fashion.
  • The ducting behind the nose has to be tight considering that opening also has to cool the radiator.
  • The engine is definitely buried under the aero ducting though but with NASCAR’s crash policy it doesn’t really matter.

Hopefully, NASCAR releases renderings of the car sooner rather than later. It’s nice to finally see it on track and getting put through a real-world test. NASCAR is only 15ish months away from putting this car on track at Daytona.

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