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NASCAR CEO: Multiple car manufacturers looking to enter the sport

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Brian France discussed a variety of topics during an appearance on SiriusXM Radio.

Chris Trotman/Getty Images

NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France revealed multiple manufacturers have expressed interested in entering the sport during an interview Friday on SiriusXM Radio.

France did not disclose which carmakers have explored joining Chevrolet, Ford and Toyota in fielding teams in the Sprint Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series only that a "couple" are exploring the possibility.

Toyota entered NASCAR's premier division in 2007 and won its first driver championship last season. Dodge competed in the Cup Series from 2001-12 before withdrawing its support after Team Penske, its flagship organization, switched to Ford.

"There is some interest by a couple of different manufacturers and we would be open to that in the right conditions," France told SiriusXM. "I think a lot of the car companies are understandably looking at the terrific job that Toyota has done by partnering with NASCAR and the success and all the things that comes along with that.

"They've been an incredible success story for a car manufacturer looking to come into a sport that's very difficult to come in, compete and win every weekend. But there's an interest. And this is obviously the biggest opportunity in auto racing in North America."

France touched on a variety of topics during his appearance on "Sirius Speedway" hosted by Dave Moody. Among the subjects covered were Cup drivers regularly winning Xfinity races, the ongoing search for a new entitlement Cup Series sponsor to replace Sprint, and the improvement of the quality of racing brought about by the implementation of a low downforce aerodynamic rules package.

The latter topic particularly enthused France, who shared his admiration for the photo finish between Kevin Harvick and Carl Edwards a week ago at Phoenix International Raceway. Harvick beat Edwards by 0.010 seconds to earn the win, with the two making contact multiple times racing towards the checkered flag.

"That's classic NASCAR racing when that happens," France said of the finish. "But it's interesting to note that not all the drivers that we have, present or past, would have made the moves that Carl Edwards tried to do to get around Harvick. Harvick did a great job. They both did a great job. But that's classic NASCAR. We expect that."

When asked about Kyle Busch winning three consecutive Xfinity races and Cup drivers generally taking the majority of victories in NASCAR's No. 2 division, France acknowledge he understands both sides of the issue.

"It's a fair debate. I can get on either side of it," France said. "Right now, that's the rules of the game, and we're going to take the benefits of the rules of the game over some of the things that may be drawbacks.

"Kyle has just got a mastery of that division and that car. On the other hand, it makes the younger drivers better. They get to compete with one of the best in the business every weekend."