NASCAR Goes Green? Not So Much


Photo via BusinessWeek

Toyota and Lowe’s Motor Speedway will utilize an environmentally friendly Toyota Camry Hybrid as the Coca-Cola 600's pace car. Of course, the other race cars chasing each other around a circle will not be hybrids. According to the GreenCarWebsite:

In order to earn its spot as a pace car, the Camry Hybrid had to pass a NASCAR performance test in which it is required to reach speeds close to 100mph from a stand-by position near the exit of the pit road to the time it reaches the exit of turn two - a distance of around a quarter of a mile.

It’s not the first time that hybrid cars have appeared as pace cars as the Ford Fusion Hybrid was used in last season’s Sprint Cup Series finale. However, it was quickly dropped as it did not meet the performance standards. The Toyota Camry Hybrid by contrast will be used throughout the race and will also be used at five more races later in the season at Infineon Raceway; in Charlotte; in Watkins Glen in New York; at Martinsville in Virginia; and the Chicagoland Speedway.

No word yet on tofu dogs or vegan treats taking the place of the ever popular deep-fried Twinkie at races. Or of a carpool program to get race fans to the big day. One thing is for sure, NASCAR shouldn't look to these guys for green lessons. According to the AP, some guy drove his "white 2001 Corvette 1,965 miles to West Texas to take part in this weekend's Big Bend Open Road Race, one of only a handful of opportunities for people with fast cars to go real fast -- legally -- on a regular highway." The race is only 120 miles!

More on NASCAR:
Nascar Driver Uses Hypermiling Tricks to Win Race
NASCAR Hugs the Forbidden Fruit

Tags: Driving | Energy