List of eligible models that never ran (Start Your Engines!)

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The following is a list of car models that were eligible to run in the NASCAR Cup Series from 1987, but never did. They may have been run in other series, however.

Eligible models

Company Marquee Model Years Eligible Notes
General Motors Chevrolet Cavalier 1982-2008 Also eligible in Whelen Modified Tour, where it still runs
Celebrity 1981-1993
Corsica 1987-1999 Ran in Busch East Series 1990-1994
Nova 1984-1991 Ran in Busch Series 1984-1988
Impala 1994-1999, 2005-2008 Seventh and eighth-generation models were eligible, but never ran; ninth-generation model ran in Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series competition 2009-2012
Caprice 1965-1999 Ran in Goody's Dash Series 1986-1993
Corvette (various types) 1955-present Several teams have attempted to adapt the Corvette to NASCAR standards, but all have been rejected by NASCAR due to not conforming to any template
Malibu 1997-present Third and fourth-generation model ran in Cup Series 1973-1982
Cobalt 2005-2010
Cruze 2008-present Almost ran with the advent of the New Body Program in 2013, getting as far as a Cruze being tested by Tommy Baldwin Racing at Preseason Testing, but ultimately, the team elected to fall in line and use the SS
Pontiac LeMans 1988-1997 Sixth generation model never ran in NASCAR; fifth-generation model was run in the Winston Cup Series in the 1970s, as late as 1983
Sunbird/J2000 1981-1991 Also eligible in the Whelen Modified Tour
Grand Am 1984-2006 Third, fourth, and fifth-generation models never ran in NASCAR; second-generation model briefly popped up in the Winston Cup Series in 1979, if Wikipedia is to be believed
Bonneville 1987-2008
Firebird 1967-2005 Frequently used as a pace car, never turned a lap as a race car despite several efforts over the years; the Trans-Am version finally made its competition debut at the 2019 Daytona 500
Buick Skylark 1975-2001
Century 1982-1996
Skyhawk 1982-1992 An effort was made by Stavola Bros. Racing to adapt this model in 1989, but nothing came of it
Electra 1959-1993
Skylark 1985-1994 Ran in Goody's Dash Series 1987-1996
Roadmaster 1991-1999
Regal 1997-present Surprisingly, despite pulling out in 1991, Buick never actually closed its NASCAR program, continuing to create and submit race versions of the Regal that were approved by NASCAR, but no team ever used; with the discontinuation of all sedan models outside of China in 2020, and with few viable coupes, Buick finally closed its NASCAR program for good
LaCrosse 2013-2020
Oldsmobile 98 1985-1999
Toronado 1966-1995
Achieva 1991-2001 Like Buick, Oldsmobile never actually closed its NASCAR program, which was how the Alero competed in 1997-1998, mainly because Alero sheetmetal happened to be the cheapest for the new SAFER Car (though Oldsmobile reiterated in documentation that they wanted nothing to do with engine development)
Intrigue 1998-2005 There was much debate as to whether this was the identity of the Aleros that ran in 1997-1998
Cadillac CTS 2018-2023 Cadillac began designing bodies for NASCAR competition in the wake of their IMSA success; to date, there have been no takers
Ford Motor Company Ford Escort 1980-2006 Ford heavily pushed for teams to run this model; the closest it came to doing so was when Bud Moore Engineering tested it in 1990, but found the Thunderbird faster
Tempo 1983-1997
Contour 1995-2003 Ran in Goody's Dash Series 1997-2000
Taurus 2008-present Despite being replaced by the Fusion in 2006, Ford created a new version of the Taurus that it made available to teams after its 2008 reintroduction, even to the models bitter end in 2019
EXP 1982-1991 Ran in the Goody's Dash Series 1984-1993
Probe 1989-2000 Ford created a NASCAR version in response to the Chevrolet Lumina; the model ultimately never ran due to all Ford teams being dedicated to the Thunderbird
Mercury Grand Marquis 1992-2002
Tracer 1988-2002 Mercury attempted to break back into NASCAR with the Tracer in 1988; it ultimately took until 1994 for them to make a comeback with the Cougar
Lincoln Town Car 1998-2011
LS 1999-2009
Chrysler Corporation Dodge 600 1987-1990 Actually ran most of the 1987 Winston Cup Series with Pacific Coast Racing as an interim car until the Chrysler LeBaron could debut in 1988; several Busch Series teams ran this model in 1988 and 1989
Shadow 1988-1997
Stealth 1990-1999 Also eligible in the Whelen Modified Tour, where it still runs
Avenger 2007-2010 The original coupe ran in the Winston Cup Series in 1997-1998, before being replaced by the Intrepid in 1999; Dodge marketed the sedan as a viable short track car, but no teams bought any Avenger sheetmetal
Monaco 1990-1995 Marketed to teams as a viable short track car, this model was a staple in the Goody's Dash Series in the mid-90s
Stratus 1995-2009 This is still being hotly debated in the NASCAR community, as technically, the Stratus DID run in the Nextel Cup and Busch Series between 2004-2006; however, only Pacific Coast Racing referred to it as such (Penske and Evernham also eventually adopted the term), as Dodge wouldn't specify the model, and NASCAR referred to it as an Intrepid, which was Dodge's model from 1999-2003; as of 2020, the debate rages on
Dynasty 1988-1996
Neon 1993-2008 This model will be used in the revived Dash Series starting in 2021
SRT-4 2003-2008
Chrysler Imperial 1990-1996 The sixth generation model ran in the Winston Cup Series from 1981-1985
Concorde 1993-2007
LHS 1994-2004
Cirrus 1995-2003 Chrysler referred to their Winston Cup Series entry from 1995-1996 as the Cirrus, but in truth, these cars still used LeBaron sheetmetal; actual Cirrus sheetmetal was never run
300 2005-present
Plymouth Acclaim 1989-1998
Sundance 1989-1997 Also eligible in Whelen Modified Tour, where it still runs
Laser 1989-1997 Also eligible in Whelen Modified Tour, where it still runs
Breeze 1996-2003
Toyota Motor Corporation Toyota Corolla 2007-present Although the Camry is the primary model used in the Cup Series, Toyota also developed several other models for possible use in NASCAR; none have been accepted by any teams to date, though they have seen use in regional and local stock car leagues such as CRA and CARS have used these models
Celica 2000-present Once Toyota entered the Goody's Dash Series, the floodgates for further involvement in NASCAR opened, and to that end, in 2000, Toyota designed a NASCAR-legal Celica; its eligibility came and went without no teams picking it up, not even when Toyota formally entered the Nextel Cup Series and Busch Series in 2007
Avalon 2007-present Toyota has, since 2007, been constantly designing and updating NASCAR-legal versions of the Avalon
86 2012-present This model will be run in the revived Dash Series starting in 2021
Supra 2019-2020 When the Supra was reintroduced in 2019, Toyota heavily pushed for Joe Gibbs Racing to adopt it; while there were initially no takers in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, 99% of Xfinity Series teams signed with Toyota eagerly adopted the Muscle Body version; with the advent of the "New Body Program II" in 2021, Toyota will withdraw the Camry from the Cup Series to force all of their Cup teams to use the Supra, though after Joe Gibbs threatened to go back to Pontiac, Toyota relented and allowed the Camry to remain eligible
Lexus GS 2007-present When Toyota entered the Nextel Cup and Busch Series in 2007, they also made Lexus models eligible; Toyota teams balked at the idea of tearing up luxury cars, yet Lexus still designs NASCAR-legal cars every year
LS 2007-present
ES 2007-present
IS 2007-present
Honda Motor Company Honda Insight 2018-present Despite mainly fielding the Accord and Civic across the Cup and Xfinity Series, the Insight is also an eligible model
Acura TLX 2015-present
RLX 2015-2020
ILX 2015-present
Mazda Motor Corporation Mazda MX-5 Miata 2017-present After finding success in the NASCAR Peak Mexico Series, Mazda attempted to break into the Cup Series in 2017; as of yet, there are no takers, but they're not giving up, having designed a NASCAR-legal version of the MX-5 to the specifications of the New Body Program II; Mazda finally managed to break into American NASCAR in 2021 when a team in the newly-revived Dash Series announced they would be using a Mazda Miata, possibly planting the seeds for a run in the Cup and Xfinity Series