Consistency of Manufacturers in NASCAR’s Cup Series

Photo Credit: Noel Lanier/OnPitRoad.com

The manufacturer battle has really kicked off in recent weeks, especially after Toyota has seemingly found a lot of speed later in the season.

Toyota certainly found the speed last weekend in Chicago that caused a stirring of the pot among the rival manufacturers and their drivers, specifically Brad Keselowski, who pilots the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion for Team Penske. Kyle Busch locked up the pole by almost two MPH in the largest margin during qualifying since 2009. Despite Toyota showing a edge on paper, the finishing statistics are seemingly missing something, so I decided to track Toyota’s stats in the cup series since 2007, when they joined the cup series.

When Toyota joined the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series back in 2007, they failed to tally a victory. The following season though Toyota earned it’s first triumph with Kyle Busch and Joe Gibbs Racing at Atlanta. That sparked nine more wins in 2008 with three different drivers (Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Tony Stewart). Toyota has been in the conversation every season, earning at least one victory every year since, with the least amount coming in 2014 when they only earned two victories in one season. It’s not domination, but consistency on Toyota’s side and in reality, it replaced Dodge after it’s departure following the 2012 season.

Keselowski states that “NASCAR hasn’t let a manufacturer get this far ahead since the 70s”. He must have missed 2007 when Chevrolet earned 26 victories in one season. That 26-win season is also the most by a manufacturer in one year in the modern era, and Toyota is far from doing that this season. Even if they win the rest of the races this season, the maximum number of races they could win is 18, eight races off of Chevrolet’s record.

If you look over season statistics Chevrolet has been leading the charge with 2008 being their worst season, still with 11 trophies. The bowtie brand has also earned 13 manufacturer championships in a row since 2003 with that streak coming to an end last season when Toyota earned their first title.

Ford hasn’t been very far behind but with less cars to bring to the track, until this season. It takes a lot more work to step up against the large lineups of Chevrolet and Toyota. Ford was the last manufacturer to win that title back in 2002 when the blue oval earned 14 victories that season. Ford has been at a slight disadvantage in recent years with the least amount of competitive cars on the track, or even the least amount of cars on track period. Ford’s acquisition of Stewart-Haas Racing this season has really helped the blue oval compete against its rivals and it shows in the standings for the manufacturer title.

Despite Keselowski’s tweet, he still earned a top-10 finish on Sunday. Ford has already matched their total amount of victories from 2016. Chevrolet is just two wins off, while Toyota, who was off to a slow start in the beginning, is seven victories off of last seasons total. The speed advantage may be there but that doesn’t mean a thing if you don’t have the victory, stage points or playoff points to show for it. If anything has been seen this season, it’s the fact that the fastest car doesn’t always win.

About Christian Koelle 213 Articles
Christian is from Ooltewah, TN, a town on the outskirts of Chattanooga. He began writing about NASCAR in July of 2015 when he started his own blog. In 2017, Christian moved to OnPitRoad from his blog, He also contributes writing to a few other news sources. His first race he ever attended came in 2005 at Atlanta Motor Speedway and his first race as media came in 2015 at the Bristol Motor Speedway. His favorite track to attend is either Iowa Speedway or Bristol Motor Speedway and his favorite track he hasn't been to yet is Phoenix. Christian makes occasional appearances on The Race Trim Radio Show on Frat House Sports and really enjoys talking about racing with anyone. Along with NASCAR, Christian loves Minor and Major League Baseball and Football. His favorite teams include the Minnesota Twins, Washington Nationals, Chattanooga Lookouts, Iowa State Cyclones, and The Detroit Lions.

2 Comments

  1. Please don’t try to make it look like things are close to even in NASCAR. Yes, Ford has 8 wins at this point….NONE, ZERE, ZIP, ZILCH, NADA since July 1! Truex Jr. alone has led 1723 laps while the top 6 Ford drivers added together have led 1821! Toyota’s top six drivers have led 3783, more than twice as many as the Ford drivers. Chevy’s record looks better than it really is with two totally fluke wins by Dillon and Newman. Take the great season Larson is having out of the picture and Chevy is no better off than Ford. Between Ganassi, Hendrick and Childress they’ve led 1489 laps. A total that is less than Truex alone! I’m not saying they’re cheating or that NASCAR is favoring them or anything of the sort. I’m saying that what Jack Roush told us many years ago has come to fruition. They are and will continue to outspend the competition. Toyota is making this long time (since 1957!) fan lose interest.

  2. Tom, what were you saying at the first of the season. When ford was by far the most dominant, NOTHING you gloating about how ford was showing them and how ford had the best car and how ford had the most HP. Well Toyota caught up, and by the way have you noticed at the first of the season no Toyota fans or drivers were crying or whining and no Chevy fans or drivers are still not whining. IT’S A ford THING AND HAS BEEN SINCE DAY ONE, IF I CAN’T WIN THEN SOMEONE IS CHEATING OR nascar IS GIVING THEM AN UNFAIR ADVANTAGE. BOO HOO

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*