In anticipation of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series competition, NASCAR’s three Original Equipment Manufacturers recently unveiled their seventh generation (Next Gen) stock car models. The sleek designs closely mimic their street cars and feature 18-inch diameter wheels, secured by a single lug nut. As such, Goodyear will be outfitting the Next Gen vehicles with 18-inch tires and transitioning from the 15-inch model that is currently used in the series.

“This will be the first application of an 18-inch tire on a vehicle of this weight, operating in the sustained load and speed environment of oval racing,” said Greg Stucker, Goodyear’s director of racing tires sales and marketing. “Goodyear’s extensive experience in designing and producing 18-inch bead diameter tires for other vehicles has helped us to develop technology for the NASCAR Cup Series environment and Next Gen vehicle.”

To prepare for the 2022 on-track debut, Goodyear has conducted an in-depth testing program at various NASCAR tracks to further refine their Next Gen tire compound approach. With a larger contact patch and smaller sidewall, the new 18-inch tires are being fine-tuned for the optimal temperature, grip and treadwear balance.

“As we conduct our testing program, our focus is on delivering tires for the cars’ needs at specific tracks and working toward the goal of making sure we have the right package at each,” added Stucker. “We’re excited to enter into this new era of racing tires and look forward to seeing them in action during the 2022 races.”