There’s an all-new NASCAR Cup Series car on the way for 2022 and it may have a very new look.
NASCAR is considering moving the location of the side number from the center of the door to open up new space for sponsorship, a move that has some fans fired up.
The cars of Denny Hamlin and Alex Bowman featured the rear number placement at the NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race at Bristol Motor Speedway in 2020. (Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
“You know what, it’s mixed. There are some fans that absolutely hate it, and there are fans that absolutely love it, so no decision as to what we’re going to do on where those numbers are going to be placed,” NASCAR president Steve Phelps said in May.
During the 2020 NASCAR All-Star Race, the cars had their numbers half on the rear quarter panel, which was a noticeable change, while the livery on Ford’s NextGen Mustang appeared to leave room in the same spot.
However, a new report from Sports Business Journal says that the number is actually going to be moved forward instead and that an official announcement is expected soon.
The Twitter account for Lefty designs has posted a mock-up of how that might look on Alex Bowman’s #48 car, which seems to fit with Chevy’s NextGen reveal design.
Not all fans are convinced by this placement, either, but FOX Sports analyst and two-time Daytona 500 winning crew chief Larry McReynolds told Fox News Autos he thinks they’ll get over it.
“I’m a traditionalist and I like the number in the center of the door, but after seeing the NextGen car, I understand the need to slide it forward,” he said.
“I think it’s a necessity to do it to give sponsors the space and value they need, and without the sponsors, we’d have to close up shop. I think by halfway through next season, we’ll wonder why we ever had the number on the door … to be honest, when I was racing, I wouldn’t have cared if the number was on the door, up front or on top, my only concern was making the car go fast.”