This weekend, Ford NASCAR racing teams from Roush Fenway Racing, Penske Racing, Wood Brothers Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports, Germain Racing and Front Row Motorsports will debut their new track ready Gen-6 Ford Fusions at the 2013 Daytona 500.
The debut of the Ford Fusion will mark the first time since the late 1980s that the race cars on the track will so closely resemble their production-model peers.
The hope is that two of the founding principles of NASCAR are rekindled: the manufacturer rivalry and brand recognition. These two principles have been dearly missed by die-hard NASCAR fans.
How We Got Here – Key Dates
- In January 2012, the world got the first glimpse of the 2013 Ford Fusion at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Ford stunned the motor sports world, 2 weeks later, with its unveiling and first on-track test of the 2013 NASCAR Fusion at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
- During the summer of 2012, Roush Fenway Racing and then Penske Racing started building additional track testing cars.
- Additional testing at Martinsville short track in September and a superspeedway test in October with Roush Fenway, then another with Penske, the final template of the 2013 NASCAR Fusion was approved.
- On the one year anniversary of the 2013 Ford Fusion’s debut to the public, 10 NASCAR Fusions roared through the streets of uptown Charlotte in a lunchtime demonstration run that declared the Ford version of the “Gen 6” car ready to go.
Ford racing teams will look to continue a streak of success in NASCAR’s biggest spectacle, where Ford Fusions have won three of the past four races.