NASCAR: Gen-6 Ford Fusion ready to make Daytona 500 debut image

After more than two years of development, including extensive work by the Ford design center and Ford aerodynamic experts, the 2013 NASCAR Fusion takes to the racetrack for the 55th running of the Daytona 500.

“This is a day so many of us at Ford and Ford fans have been waiting for. When we first unveiled the 2013 NASCAR Fusion in Charlotte in January 2012, we said we wanted to help return the ‘stock car back to NASCAR.’ Without question, with this car, we have,” said Jamie Allison, director, Ford Racing.

The new “Gen 6” race cars being introduced return manufacturer identity to NASCAR. It continues the trend of the past three years of NASCAR introducing more consumer relevance to the sport, including the use of alternative fuels, fuel injection and now, manufacturer identity.

This weekend, Ford teams from Roush Fenway Racing, Penske Racing, Wood Brothers Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports, Germain Racing and Front Row Motorsports will debut their new Fusions. For fans, there will be little doubt the sport has changed. The Ford teams will look to continue a streak of success in NASCAR’s biggest race, where Fusions have won three of the past four events.

“We know nearly 40 percent of new car intenders are race fans, and of those, almost 84 percent follow NASCAR. Racing helps drive our business. We know Ford race fans consider, shop and buy more Fords than the general public. So bringing back this kind of relevancy to NASCAR is the X factor,” said Allison.