The concept stating that NASCAR should switch to electric cars, according to Bill Nye, might make some car racing fans rather skeptical. But the science guy claims that by switching, the races would actually become exponentially better in terms of marketability, fan experience and more importantly, environmental impact.
His idea of replacing all of the gas-chugging race cars currently participating in NASCAR events with electric car models manufactured by Tesla is not entirely unlikely. Even if when comparing between the two types of cars when looking at horsepower, the difference is rather hefty, one has to take into account that Tesla cars are commercially available for everyone, while NASCAR vehicles are not.
If Tesla would create a car specifically designed to race on NASCAR tracks, it would easily rival the ones currently in use. In addition, the manufacturing process would not take extended periods of time, with a model allegedly being available in just 3 years, according to Nye.
In terms of marketing, switching to electric would make Tesla-type cars more enticing for the general public. The environmental impact of the race itself would also be exponentially lower. Race times will also be extended, because pit crews would simply be required to change the battery, instead of filling the car up with gas.
True, because electric cars are much quieter when compared to normal racing cars, the experience of hearing tens of cars rumbling and growling like beasts when racing would be gone. Participants will be able to hear one another while having a conversation during races, but that isn’t necessarily
worth the sacrifice, according to some parts of the general public.
In regards to investments, race car manufacturers will have to extensively fund this proposed switch. Car diversity will also suffer by a large amount because most companies engaged in NASCAR have only one electric car model each.
NASCAR has already taken some steps in order to make the races more environmentally friendly. The NASCAR Green program diverted over 120,000 tires from landfills, donated leftover racetrack food and recycled oil that could potentially power the whole Empire State Building for more than a year.
Even if NASCAR should switch to electric cars, according to Bill Nye, the science guy doesn’t necessarily have the same viewpoint when looking at car races as a normal NASCAR fan. Tearing away the roaring engines would make normal races similar to RC car races instead of events were gas-chugging monsters compete against one another in order to see who’s the fastest.