Nascar has seen a gamut of manufacturers take to its tracks throughout its seven-decade-plus history, with varying degrees of success. Some have fell at the first Hurdle and others like Ford with 711 wins and 17 championship wins and Chevrolet with 814 Race wins and 40 Manufactures Championships. We take a look at how many manufacturers have raced in NASCAR and how successful they have been.
Over 29 car manufactures have raced in the NASCAR cup series of which 16 have won a race. These range from successful manufactures like, Ford, Chevrolet, Dodge and Toyota, to lesser-known brands like Henry, MG and Willys. Sports car producers Aston Martin and Porsche have also raced at the top level of NASCAR.
There is an overwhelming leaning towards USA manufacturers in all NASCAR series, however other countries have entered on occasion. We take a look at these below. As we head back it becomes much more difficult to get firm details so we will stick with the overall manufacturer in NASCAR (and make) rather than any models or sub groups. It also makes the table much MUCH easier to read!
Which Manufacturers Have Raced in the NASCAR Cup Series.
|Manufacturer||Country||Make or Model of Car||First and Last years in Cup Series|
|American Motors||USA||Nash, Hudson and AMC||1950s, 1978|
|Austin Healey||UK||Sprite||1961 and 1962|
|Chrysler||USA||Many including Dodge and Plymouth||1952 – 2012|
|Ford||USA||Many including Lincoln, Mustang and Mercury||1950s – Present Day|
|General Motors||USA||Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Pontiac||1948 – Present Day|
|Kaiser-Frazer||USA||Henry||1949 – 1956|
|MG Motor||UK||MG||1954 – 1963|
|Packard||USA||1950 – 1956|
|Toyota||Japan||Camry||2007 – Present Day|
Which Countries have Competed in NASCAR
Although other manufacturers have fielded cars in the Nascar Cup Series, as you can see from the table above only 5 countries including the USA have entered a NASCAR race. Although there were rumors that Audi ( owned by Volkswagen may race a car these rumors have been denied by the company. It is looking more likely that Volkswagen, may look to Formula 1 before NASCAR with its Porsche engine with Red Bull, or Its Audi Engine and Maclaren.
Currently more women have raced in nascar than countries.
Which Manufacturers have Won a NASCAR Cup Series race?
There are 16 manufactures that have won in NASCAR top levels. and Although the familiar faces of NASCAR top the lists there are a few surprised in there. Did you know a Jaguar won a race for example!
- Chevrolet (814)
First win: 3/26/1955 Columbia Speedway, Fonty Flock
Last win: 11/7/2021 Phoenix Raceway, Kyle Larson
Chevrolet is the all-around most successful manufacturer is Nascar Cup Series history. It leads the series in both race victories (814) and manufacturer’s titles (40), the latter of which included an impressive streak from 2003 through 2015.
The Chevy brand has been the most successful in the Cup series since overtaking Ford for that honor in 2015. It captured its milestone 800th race win in Cup with Chase Elliot at the inaugural event at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas in May of 2021.
Chevy models that have found victory on Cup tracks include the Bel Air/Biscayne, Chevelle/Laguna, Impala, Monte Carlo, Lumina, Chevy SS and, of course, the Camaro.
- Ford (711)
First win: 6/25/1950 Dayton Speedway, Jimmy Florian
Last win: 8/28/2021 Daytona International Speedway, Ryan Blaney
Ford has managed to capture 711 race victories and 17 manufacturer’s championships despite long intervals of Chevy dominance in more recent decades. The iconic brand has a storied racing lineage the world over and across many forms of motorsport, and it’s no different with stock cars. The Fairlane, Galaxie, Torino, Talladega, Thunderbird, Taurus, Fusion and the current model, the Mustang, have all seen Cup Series action. They last won the Manufacturers Championship in 2020.
- Dodge (218)
First win: 2/1/1953 Palm Beach Speedway, Lee Petty
Last win: 9/30/2012 Dover International Speedway, Brad Keselowski
The rumor mill has been working overtime as of late, and one of the biggest rumors making the rounds is that Dodge may be poised for a return to Nascar in the not-too-distant future. After returning to stock car racing in 2001 (Truck Series excluded) after a long hiatus,
Dodge once again bowed out of Nascar upon claiming the 2012 driver’s championship with driver Brad Keselowski. In the years since it has come to light that the reason behind Dodge’s departure was simply due to losing its flagship team, Team Penske, rather than any specific desire to leave.
This can be evidenced by the fact that Dodge did indeed develop a Gen 6 car (which debuted the following season in 2013). Perhaps with the new Next gen car we will see them back at an oval sooner rather than later.
- Plymouth (190)
First win: 10/2/1949 Heidelberg Speedway, Lee Petty
Last win: 8/12/1973 Talladega Superspeedway, Dick Brooks
The Petty-blue, shark-nosed Plymouth Superbird is without question the most iconic machine in the history of stock car racing, though many forget that Petty also raced the Roadrunner and Belvedere models of the now-defunct American car maker.
In fact, the name Petty and Plymouth are practically synonymous, leaving many to ask which came first (Richard and his father, Lee, would together win five driver’s championships in Plymouth cars).
But all good things come to an end, and so it was when Nascar banned cars like the Superbird and Dodge Daytona. Plymouth would pull manufacturer support after the 1977 season, Petty having primarily committed to Dodge.
- Toyota (162)
First win: 3/9/2008 Atlanta Motor Speedway, Kyle Busch
Last win: 10/4/2021 Talladega Superspeedway, Bubba Wallace
Since coming to the Cup Series in 2007, Toyota has gone on to find its footing in stock car racing after a lukewarm start, garnering 3 manufacturer’s titles as well as 3 driver’s championships. It has also become the fifth most successful car maker in Cup history behind Plymouth and Dodge, and appears to be poised to continue that success into the future.
- Pontiac (154)
First win: 2/17/1957 Daytona Beach Course, Cotton Owens
Last win: 3/16/2003 Darlington Raceway, Ricky Craven
Having been a series mainstay until leaving in 2004 and guiding three drivers to Cup championships, Pontiac scored its final Cup victory in the memorable Carolina Dodge Dealer’s 400 at Darlington Raceway, in which Ricky Craven quite literally inched-out Kurt Busch in the closest finish in series history.
In the aftermath of GMs 2009 bankruptcy, Pontiac would close its doors to the bereavement of auto enthusiasts in the U.S. and across the world.
- Oldsmobile (115)
First win: 7/10/1949 Daytona Beach Course, Red Byron
Last win: 8/16/1992 Michigan Speedway, Harry Gant
Having claimed three manufacturer’s titles early in the sport’s history, Oldsmobile continued to enjoy moderate success into the 1980s before GM decided to phase out both Olds and Buick from Nascar competition in the early 90s to focus on its Chevy brand. Perhaps the results indicate how good a decision this was.
- Mercury (96)
First win: 6/18/1950 Vernon Fairgrounds, Bill Blair
Last win: 8/3/1980 Talladega Superspeedway, Neil Bonnet
The Mercury brand never quite made a big splash in stock car racing (likely due to parent company Ford’s wanting to focus on its flagship nameplate), though Mercury racecars notched 96 race wins before being phased out in the early 80s. Like Pontiac did almost exactly a year before, Mercury ceased operations in 2010.
- Hudson (79)
First win: 2/11/1951 Daytona Beach Course, Marshall Teague
Last win: 2/6/1955 West Palm Beach, Herb Thomas
When folks see that old black and white footage of those early races on the beaches of Daytona, they are most likely seeing many a Hudson Hornet careening around those sandy bends. One of the most iconic cars from the sport’s early days, Hudson left after winning the first three manufacturers’ championships 1952-1954.
- Buick (65)
First win: 5/1/1955 Charlotte Speedway, Buck Baker
Last win: 4/22/1990 North Wilkesboro Speedway, Brett Bodine
Like its GM counterpart Oldsmobile, Buick was phased out of racing in the 90s after winning 2 manufacturers titles and 65 races, the last with Brett Bodine in a controversial race at North Wilkesboro.
- Chrysler (59)
First win: 8/12/1951 Michigan Fairgrounds, Tommy Thompson
Last win: 6/23/1961 Hartsfield, Buck Baker
Though it never achieved the same kind of success as its Chrysler Corp. counterparts Plymouth and Dodge, Chrysler racecars did manage to score 59 wins, the last coming in 1961 with the legendary Buck Baker. Dodge / Chrysler left NASCAR in 2012 though are rumoured to be considering a come back with the Next Gen NASCAR now being introduced.
- AMC (5)
First win: 1/21/1973 Riverside Raceway, Mark Donahue
Last win: 9/1/1975 Darlington Raceway, Bobby Allison
Perhaps the greatest legacy left behind by the American Motor Company is its Javelin model, a stalwart of the muscle car era. AMC manages to garner 5 Cup wins between 1973 and 1975 before quietly leaving the series.
- Lincoln (4)
First win: 6/19/1949 Charlotte Speedway, Jim Roper
Last win: 4/2/1950 Charlotte Speedway, Tim Flock
Ford’s most underserved brand was active from the years 1949-1957, during which it won four races (though all came within a one-year span. It’s interesting to note that both its first and last wins came at Charlotte.
- Studebaker (3)
First win: 6/16/51 Columbia Speedway, Frank Mundy
Last win: 11/25/1951 Mobile International Speedway, Frank Mundy
This legendary manufacturer’s three Cup wins all came in 1951, the first and last of which came courtesy of Frank Mundy (the other was by Danny Weinberg), although Studebaker was active in the sport until the early 60s.
- Nash (1)
First win: 4/1/1951 Charlotte Speedway, Curtis Turner
Last win: 4/1/1951 Charlotte Speedway, Curtis Turner
The sole win for this auto maker was scored by none other than Nascar Hall of Fame inductee Curtis Turner at the sport’s home track in Charlotte, NC., on April Fool’s Day 1951.
- Jaguar (1)
First win: 6/13/1954 Linden (NJ) Airport, Al Keller
Last win: 6/13/1954 Linden (NJ) Airport, Al Keller
Jaguar’s victory at Linden Airport road course represents the only win in series history by a European auto maker. Likely this is due to the fact that Nascar isn’t nearly as popular in Europe as Formula One, and partly for this reason there are no European manufacturers that are showing much interest in entering Nascar, given its limited potential as a marketing angle for European auto companies.
Why Don’t European Car Manufacturers Compete in NASCAR?
As you can see from both the table and the list of NASCAR winners above there is a definite lack of diversity! Only one european car has won a NASCAR race, and only one Asian manufacturer has competed in the Cup Series. Why it is not attractive to European manufacturers is a big question that requires a large answer however the main points we will list below and write a full answer to here.
Cost to Produce a NASCAR: For firms like porsche, Aston Martin, BMW or Mercedes to enture would require a whole new car set up. They simple don’t make cars like Chevy or Ford do.
Nascar Rules: The rules required would require the production of engines they have no expertise and limited experience in
Reward: European Manufacturers rely on other ways to market their cars in the US. The cost of NASCAR in a limited market would not be cost effective.
Other Racing Forms: European manufacturers have access to many more forms of racing to demonstrate their cars and Engines, GT, Le Mans, F1, Rally, Touring Car all have european cars represented. These are more popular in their Domestic mArkets
NASCAR isn’t that popular overseas: NASCAR is a predominately American sport. Only Four Drivers have won races who were not from America. Juan Pablo Montoya, Marcos Ambrose, Mario Andretti and Earl Ross
There is a current European NASCAR series that is steadily increasing in popularity, but it may be some time till we see both the Manufacturers and the Drivers from Europe at a Daytona 500.
Currently there are only 3 car manufacturers that race in NASCAR, Chevrolet, Ford and Toyota, with a rumored return of Dodge in the future. There have been 29 car manufacturers over the course of history that have competed, however these are, by a long way, dominated by American manufacturers.
European Cars are noticeably absent from NASCAR and unlikely to return in the near future. So you might have to wait for those Lamborghinis and Ferraris to appear at a track near you.