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Getting Familiarized with the Different Types of Race Cars

Updated: May 4, 2023

Race cars come in all shapes and sizes, from the diminutive karts used in go-kart racing to the behemoths of Formula One. In between those two extremes are a whole host of different types of race cars, each with its own distinct set of characteristics.

In this article, we'll take a look at some of the most popular types of race cars, what sets them apart, and what they're typically used for.

1. Open-Seaters

Open-seater race cars are designed with just one seat and with the wheels exposed (unlike a Formula One car, which has its wheels enclosed by the bodywork). These cars are some of the fastest and most powerful machines used in racing. They often have pointy noses, lots of aerodynamic aids, and giant wings at the back, which make them look like low-flying fighting jets. The engine is located in the rear of the vehicle, exposing the suspension components. The low weight and large wheels in the back provide power and traction.

2. Touring Cars

A touring car is a racing car that is based on a production car. Touring cars must have four seats and two doors, and they often have a sedan or two-door coupe body style. They are usually built to race in one of the many touring car racing series held worldwide.

Touring cars are based on the production models of passenger cars. The main difference between touring cars and stock cars is that stock cars are based on a specific model from a manufacturer while touring cars can be any passenger car. Touring cars usually have more powerful engines and are lighter than stock cars. They also often have aerodynamic body kits and spoilers.

3. Top Fuel Dragsters

Drag racing is an acceleration-type competition between two race cars. The vehicles are lined up right next to each other and whoever covers the quarter-mile (402 meters) is the winner. Organizing a drag race is simpler than organizing a race like the Indy Car race because the drag strip is smaller and easier to construct. Additionally, the rules for drag racing are much simpler. This simplicity is one of the reasons why drag racing is so popular, both legally and illegally.

4. Drag Cars

There are many different types of drag cars, but the most common is the top fuel dragsters and funny cars. These types of vehicles are easily recognizable due to their unique design, technology, and construction. However, less conspicuous drag cars are also designed for use on the strip. Most drag cars are based on regular production models, but they have been modified in order to provide their drivers with the best possible acceleration figures.

This car has been modified to be as light as possible, with a more powerful engine and suspension that can handle hard launches.

5. Rally Cars

Rally cars are designed to be driven on all types of terrain, including gravel, snow, and tarmac. They are equipped with all-wheel-drive trains, sequential gearboxes, and custom-made suspension to cope with such conditions. There are two seats for the driver and co-driver, rather than just one, as is the case with other racing cars. The co-driver's job is to navigate for the driver by reading the road map.

The map is the itinerary for the rally race, held on public roads closed off. The driver and co-driver are not allowed to know the route beforehand. The goal is to get from point A to point B in the shortest amount of time. The crew that does this the fastest is the winner.


Overall, race cars can come in various shapes and sizes, and each type has its unique set of features that make it suited for a specific kind of racing. It's important to get familiarized with the different types of race cars so that you can choose the right one for you and your driving style.

If you are hoping to have a GT car race experience in Vancouver, BC, look no further than our amazing races here at GT Race Experience. Now it's your turn to jump into the driver's seat and set your heart racing as you hurtle around the bends and flat out down the straight of a real race track! Book your first race experience with us and experience the thrill of the race!

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