Everything You Wanted to Know About NASA's Super Touring Racing Series

If you’re looking to race in a series that lets you build the car the way you like, then Super Touring could be for you. With an open rules structure, Super Touring/Super Unlimited gives you the freedom to build the car you like using the parts you choose. The amazing part of Super Touring/Super Unlimited is how close the racing is despite the open nature of the rules set. With classes from the no-holds-barred Super Unlimited to the more sedate Super Touring 5 and Super Touring 6 classes, you are sure to find a suitable place in which to race.

NASA ST/SU provides a venue for spirited on-track competition in high-performance racecars of all makes, models and types. Several key factors are considered in classing vehicles, using an “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio” as the ultimate equalizer between vehicles. The relatively few modification-specific rules will allow competitors to configure their cars to perform at an optimal level by using aftermarket parts, providing an opportunity for promotional exposure for the competitors’ sponsors, aftermarket tuners, parts manufacturers, and the vehicle manufacturers. Additionally, these series should provide a stage to showcase driving talent, in hopes that the most talented drivers will advance to even higher-level professional series. The format of the rules encourages direct crossover from both high-level NASA TT classes and race classes from multiple organizations.

Super Touring 1-4

  • Any four-wheel, fendered/closed-wheel, internal-combustion engine vehicle that passes NASA safety technical inspection can be used to compete in Super Touring, provided it is in compliance with the modification limitations in section 6 of these rules. Hybrids must be approved by the National ST Director. EV eligibility pending for 2020.
  • Sports racers, “Prototypes,” and monocoque chassis purpose-built race cars are permitted in ST1 and ST2 using the specific Modification Factor listed for these chassis in 6.5.2. They are not permitted in ST3 or ST4 unless specifically approved elsewhere in these rules, or by written approval of the National ST Director.
  • Production” vehicle models are those manufactured by an automobile manufacturer (at least 500 produced per year) and approved for street use by the U.S. D.O.T., T.U.V, or Japanese government, provided it is in compliance with the modification limitations in section 6.1 and 6.2 of these rules. (Other approved vehicles are listed in 6.5.3)
  • Non-Production” vehicles (ST1, ST2, and ST3 only), include all other ST series eligible vehicles including “kit” cars, purpose-built track/race cars, tube-frame and partial tube-frame conversion vehicles, and “Production” vehicles that have modifications not in compliance with section 6.2, and will be assessed the “Non-Production Vehicle” Modification Factor listed in 6.5.2 unless the vehicle model is listed in Section 6.5.3 of these rules and has been approved to compete under “Production” vehicle status. A competitor with a vehicle originally qualified as a “Production” model may use the Modification Factor assessment for “Non-Production Vehicle” to avoid all “Production vehicle only” limitations/restrictions in section 6.2.
  • For ST4, all vehicles must originate as Production street vehicles unless listed otherwise in Section 6.5.3. Tube frame chassis conversions are not permitted. The Non-Production Vehicle Modification Factor may not be utilized in ST4, but additional specific Modification Factor assessments for certain approved non-production modifications are listed in 6.5.2.

Super Touring 5 and 6

  • All vehicles must either be listed in section 6.3.3 or originate as four-wheel, fendered/closed-wheel, internal combustion engine*, Production street vehicles that comply with the modification limitations in section 6.1 of these rules.
  • ST5 models must have 264 (two hundred sixty-four) or less factory rated engine horsepower and an engine displacement less than 5,100 mL (cc)**.
  • ST6 models must have 168 (one-hundred sixty-eight) or less factory rated engine horsepower and an engine displacement less than 2,449 mL (cc)**, unless they are listed as eligible models in Appendix C. Forced induction is not permitted in ST6. 2006+ Mazda MX-5 models and are specifically not eligible for ST6.
  • “Production” vehicle models are those manufactured by an automobile manufacturer (at least 500 produced per year) and approved for street use by the U.S. D.O.T. (Non USDM vehicles may be approved by the National ST Director on a case-by-case basis). Sports racers, “Prototypes”, monocoque chassis purpose-built race cars, “kit” cars, purpose-built track/race cars, tube-frame, and partial tube-frame conversion vehicles are specifically prohibited, unless listed in section 6.3.3.
  • * Hybrids must be approved by the National ST Director. EV eligibility pending 2020
  • ** Engine displacement limits include any engine modifications post manufacturing.
Any non-formula vehicle that passes NASA safety tech inspection based on the specifications found in the CCR may compete in Super Unlimited. As well, alternative vehicles may be permitted provided that they meet the current specification from other sanctioning bodies enumerated in the CCR. There are no maximum power limits or minimum weight limits. Any type and size tires may be used. All types of motors, transmissions, chassis, frames, bodies, suspensions, aerodynamic modifications, and braking systems are permitted. (Note: No modification rules or limitations in Section 6)

Recent listings from

  • C5 Corvette Z06 $10,000 – $25,000
  • C6 Corvette Z06 $30,000 – $70,000
  • Dodge Viper $48,000 – $148,000
  • Porsche GT3 $66,500 – $200,000
  • BMW E46 M3 $13,000 – $34,000
  • Nissan 370Z Nismo $31,000 – $35,000
  • Toyota 86/Scion FR-S $9,000 – $18,000
  • NC Mazda MX-5 $5,000 – $12,000
  • Super Touring 1 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 6.00:1
  • Super Touring 2 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 8.00:1
  • Super Touring 3 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 10.00:1
  • Super Touring 4 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 12.00:1
  • Super Touring 5 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 14.00:1
  • Super Touring 6 = Adjusted Wt/HP ratio equal to, or greater than, 18.00:1

Varies by car and horsepower. You can download the class calculator here:

Any type of fuel or additives that are approved by the Race Director are permitted. Methanol is not permitted as a fuel.
$10,000 for ST6 cars to $200,000 for Super Unlimited

Some recent listings on

  • 2000 Super Truck ST1 $18,305
  • 2008 BMW M3 DCT $64,000
  • 2012 Chevrolet Corvette $52,000
  • 2008 Lotus Exige $41,000
  • 2010 Porsche GT3 Cup $115,000
  • SL-C $180,000
Vehicle modifications are virtually unlimited, but certain modifications incur additional “modification factors” that affect the horsepower-to-weight ratio. No active aero devices allowed, no nitrous oxide, up to 250 pounds of ballast permitted.
Average cost to run a weekend — $1,500 to $2,500 all in, travel, entry fees, brakes, tires, fuel, food and lodging. And beer.

Tires, brands and prices

Tire sizes vary greatly, but here’s a sampling of popular sizes and brands:

  • Toyo Proxes RR P275-35-ZR18 $306
  • Toyo Proxes RS1 P335-710-R18 $435
  • Hoosier A7 P335-35-ZR17 $420
  • Hoosier R7 P225-40-ZR17 $316

Brakes, brands and prices

  • Hawk DTC 70 $300 – $350
  • Hawk DTC 60 $200 – $300
Toyo Tires, Spec Clutches, Ohlins Suspension, Nissan/NISMO, Motion Control Suspension, Injector Pulse, Hoosier, Hawk Performance, G-Loc Brakes, Frozen Rotors, Ford Performance, Raybestos, BFGoodrich, AST Suspension.

Ford Performance, Nissan Motorsports, Mazda Motorsports


Fast, fair competition with rules that allow for creativity and innovation with a variety of cars.


The rules take some serious study. Super Touring is not a class for the budget conscious. The cars can become expensive, as can the consumables.

  • Sequential, paddle shift/semi-automatic, and dog-ring/straight-cut gears (i.e. non- synchromesh) transmissions are permitted, but will be assessed via the “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio” formula regardless of whether they are OEM or not.
  • Tire and wheel size are unlimited in ST1, ST2, and ST3, but non-DOT approved tires will be assessed via the “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio.”
  • Non-DOT approved tires are not permitted in ST4.
  • DOT-approved R-compound autocross tires shall be assessed via the “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio” in ST4.
  • Maximum tire size in ST4 is limited. (See ST4 specific limitations in 6.4)
  • Any hardware that allows a competitor or crew member to wirelessly or directly connect to the ECU (or alter ECU maps) at any time during competition or post-competition impound is strictly prohibited, regardless of whether such hardware is external or internal to the ECU, and regardless of the direction of data flow.
  • A rear wing (or rear spoiler for wagon-style bodies) may not exceed a height of eight (8) inches above the roof-line (or OEM windshield height for convertibles).
  • Relocation of suspension mounting points is permitted ST1, ST2 and ST3, provided that the modifications do not violate any of the other rules above. One possible method is via the use of modified mounting point brackets attached to OEM mounting locations.
  • Modification of the rocker panels for side-exit exhaust is permitted and will be assessed a Modification Factor in the “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio.”
  • Modification and/or relocation of components of the firewall with engine relocation ten (10) inches or less (ie. no mid or rear engine conversion) is permitted, but is significantly limited by the requirement to retain the unmodified transmission tunnel and floor pan.
  • Non-DOT approved tires are not permitted in ST4. DOT-approved R- compound autocross tires shall be assessed via the “Adjusted Weight/Power Ratio” in ST4. Hoosier DOT Wet tires shall be assessed as autocross tires except during an officially designated “Rain Session” when they may be used without a Modification Factor assessment.


Questions and Answers to Feed Your Curiosity

The beauty of Super Touring is the freedom it allows you to choose the chassis you want, and the creativity it gives you to build it as you see fit.
We devised the section-width tools to compensate for variances in manufacturing and sizing methods. NASA Section Width measurement often does not correlate with the tire size printed on the tire by the manufacturer, and wheel width will change the NASA Section Width measurement. For example, a tire designated as a 275 by the manufacturer may not fit the 282 mm NASA Section Width measurement tool. Use caution when selecting wheels and tires, and consult your regional series leader if you have questions.
Because of the fine details of the rules, the competition in Super Touring is really close, which is fantastic given that it has the widest variety of cars of any classes in all of NASA.
With creativity comes great responsibility. The creativity to build the car you want the way you want to build it means you need to do your homework. NASA ST drivers are a smart bunch. They know the rules inside and out and the fast drivers build their cars to extent that rules allow.
If you have to ask, you can’t afford it. Seriously, classes such as Super Unlimited or Super Touring 1 and Super Touring 2 can be pricey because high horsepower and low lap times cost money, but slower classes such as Super Touring 5 and Super Touring 6 are no more expensive than some of NASA’s spec classes.
It’s typically cheaper to buy a built car, but because you can’t get financing on a racecar, it’s a big chunk of cash up front. Once have buy the car, you are still going to have to put money and some work into it to “make it yours.” Building a car is more expensive, because you’re buying new equipment. However, it’s a slower cash burn, and you can build it to your liking.
This also depends largely on you. Small and light is easier on consumables, but those tend to be momentum cars in classes such as ST5 and ST6. If you want the thunder and speed of a V8 in ST1 and ST2, those cars tend to be heavier with higher expenses associated with consumables. The sweet spot in the middle is ST3 and ST4, and those fields are growing nationwide.


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