Carburetors out, fuel injection in?

Updated: August 21, 2009, 9:26 PM ET
By David Newton | ESPN.com

BRISTOL, Tenn. -- NASCAR is researching the possibility of moving from engines with carburetors to fuel injection.

Officials met with top engine builders from organizations earlier this month to discuss the move of that technology and others that would make cars more fuel efficient and more like cars on the manufacturer showroom floor.

Manufacturers switched fully from carburetors to fuel injection in the 1980s.

No timetable has been set for when fuel injection could be used, but Toyotas Lee White said his company could be ready to go by the 2010 opener at Daytona if NASCAR gave the go-ahead.

"I would vote for it," White said on Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway. "No question, because everyone right now is spending an absolute fortune on [carburetor technology] that has absolute zero application in real life."

White said all manufacturers need to be more conscious about the environment to survive, and he believes NASCAR needs to move more in that direction.

"Sit in the grandstands and watch these cars go into Turns 1 and Turns 3 and watch all the fuel belching out the tailpipe," he said.

White said the transition could be made easily and without great expense.

"Its something that could be implemented along with a few other things that could be discussed that could potentially reduce costs and increase the potential audience for the sport," he said.

David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at dnewtonespn@aol.com.

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ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter