What Kind Of Battery Is In A NASCAR?


What Kind Of Battery Is In A NASCAR

Have you ever wondered what kind of battery is in a NASCAR? If you answered lithium, you would have been spot on. Some teams still opt for an AGM racing battery, as both battery options do the required job, which is providing power to the racing car.

NASCAR has been using lithium-ion batteries for years, mainly because they weigh less than their lead counterparts while offering more cranking power and longer life. AGM batteries are still being used; however, lithium batteries are likely to be the future of racing.

When an automobile used to need a 30-40lb battery, it can now be replaced with an 8-10lb lithium battery because lithium batteries typically weigh 50-75 percent less than a comparable lead-acid battery. The quickest and simplest method for trimming weight in an oversized vehicle is to install a lighter battery unit.

what type of battery does a nascar use
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What Kind Of Battery Is In A NASCAR?

NASCAR has been using lithium batteries for many years. Some teams prefer to fit AMG (Absorbed Glass Mat) batteries under the hood of their cars. Either type does the necessary job on race day. It comes down to preference and cost.

Lithium-Ion Racing Batteries

Compared to other kinds of battery types, lithium batteries provide the largest weight reductions, more cranking power, improved electrical performance, and significantly longer life. Typically, a lead/AGM battery weighing 40–50 pounds can be replaced by a 12- or 16-volt lithium battery weighing about 10 pounds without impacting performance.

What Lithium Batteries Does NASCAR Use?

The world’s leader in ultra-lightweight Lithium-Ion high-performance batteries, Braille Battery, is an American company headquartered in Sarasota, Florida. The company also distributes and sells the top-performing lightweight AGM battery line for street, hot rod, import tuner, and race vehicles (highest cranking amps per pound), as well as the first and only AGM carbon fiber race battery.

Braille BatteryOpens in a new tab. and its high-performance lithium and lightweight AMG batteries are no strangers to successfully powering racing vehicles to the checkered flag. Their Microlite ML20C Lithium BatteryOpens in a new tab. has helped Wood Brothers RacingOpens in a new tab. win a Daytona 500, and it’s the spec battery of choice in every car competing in IndyCar, IL15 Indy Lights, Australian V8 Supercars, and Super GT.

Braille batteries are the choice of many top teams competing in NASCAR, SCCA, and NASA. You can expect to find a Braille battery under the hood, whether in drag racing, rally, drifting, or motorcycle racing.

Braille MicroLite ML20C Lithium Battery Specs of Battery
Voltage12
Pulse Cranking Amps (PCA)1325
Lithium Amp Hour/Lead-Acid Equivalent48
Full Voltage Charge13.8
Amp Hour (AH)16
Life Cycle @ 10% DOD5000
Weight6.1 lbs.
Length7.2”
Width3.65”
Height6.2”
PolarityRight-Side Positive

Alternative Lithium Racing Batteries For NASCAR:

AGM Batteries Used In NASCAR

AGM batteries are lead-acid batteries that are regarded as superior to other batteries. Due to their reliability and efficiency in handling high electrical demands, they are particularly successful at powering race cars.

EnerSysOpens in a new tab. is the official battery partner of NASCAR Racing Experience (NRE) and the manufacturer of OdysseyOpens in a new tab. batteries. ODYSSEY® batteries’ durable Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) construction and non-spillable design shield them from high-impact shock and mechanical vibration, which contributes to longer battery life, and offers cranking pulses up to 2,700 amps for five seconds.

Alternative AGM Racing Batteries For NASCAR:

what battery is used in nascar
Richard Thornton shutterstock.

The Difference Between A Lithium-Ion And An AGM Battery

When choosing a motorsport battery, the choice will be between AGM and Lithium-Ion batteries. Both are viable options yet constructed differently. Let’s look into how they differ from each other.

Lithium-Ion Battery Construction

Lithium Iron Phosphate or LiFePO4 batteries are typically used in motorsports. Generally, this is the safest Lithium-Ion technology currently in use. A graphitic carbon electrode with a metallic backing serves as the anode in a lithium iron phosphate battery (LiFePO4 battery), which uses LiFePO4 as the cathode material. 

Each lithium battery consists of several distinct cells arranged in parallel and series simultaneously. The industry standard for the needs of racing is cylindrical cells. They can handle the intense heat and harsh conditions of racing, from the G-forces to the alternator’s steady charge. They are also safer because they are protected by a lock and feature a “blowoff point” if a problem ever develops.

However, because of the steel shell, they are a little heavier and less space-efficient than other cells. The highly flammable electrolyte is composed of lithium salt in an organic solvent (lithium hexafluorophosphate). Although this substance is kept in tightly closed steel containers, burning electrolytes might ignite nearby combustible materials.

The greatest feature is the weight, which can be substituted for a similar power for only one-third of the weight. When compared like for like, Lithium-Ion has a longer cycle life (number of charges and discharges) and faster recharging times. Compared to lead-acid batteries, these batteries are far more resistant to deep discharge.

Cost is a drawback, although the longer cycle life can balance the cost factor out. Due to the chemistry, the performance at lower temperatures (often below roughly – 10 degrees) will be less than that of a comparable lead-acid battery; however, this is generally not a problem in motorsport.

The Advantages Of Lithium-Ion Batteries

  • It weighs less than other types of batteries
  • Longer life cycle (charges and discharges)
  • Faster recharging time
  • Resistant to deep discharge
  • Supplies energy quickly.
  • Fast energy discharge curve
  • Maintenance-free
  • Faster cranking speed
  • An ultra-hot ignition spark
  • Sustained voltage
  • Cleaner source of power

AGM Battery Construction

In AGM batteries, the electrolyte of the battery is kept in glass mats, unlike traditional liquid lead-acid batteries. Thin glass fibers are expertly woven into a mat to enhance the surface area and hold the electrolyte on the cells for the battery’s lifespan. There is no possibility of leakage because the acid has been absorbed.

As a result, AGM batteries can be mounted upright or on their sides. Additionally, this technology lets the plates be packed closer together, making the battery smaller and lighter. The motorsport AGM batteries produce significantly more power than an equal wet cell standard type battery because of their pure lead content and increased surface area.

The benefits of lead-acid batteries are the low cost, a wide variety of sizes, power ratings, and compatibility with common chargers. It is a universally accepted and recognized technology.

Advantages Of An AMG Battery

 

  • Excellent life cycle
  • Low level of internal resistance
  • High resistance against cold temperatures
  • Vibration resistance
  • Quick charge time
  • Non-spill design
  • Handles high electrical loads
  • Greater mounting flexibility
  • Ideal for stop-start applications
  • Increased pulse power production
  • Maintenance-free

Difference In Cost

Lithium-Ion batteries are pricey for club racing, varying from $400 to more than $1200, depending on your chosen battery. However, compared to the price of some of the other racing-related things we buy. For the advantages that lithium batteries bring to the racing track, it is fairly reasonable, and a standard lithium battery should last between 8 to 10 years.

AGM racing batteries cost considerably less, and you can purchase a suitable racing battery for under $400. AGM batteries come in various sizes and with fluctuating prices but will always be cheaper than a lithium counterpart.

Conclusion

The most common battery found under the hood of a NASCAR racing car is a lithium-ion model. AGM racing batteries are still being used, as some designs have incorporated a ‘smaller’ battery without affecting the performance levels required to power a NASCAR racing car.

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