Siemens and Hendrick Motorsports extend championship-winning technical partnership

  • Hendrick Motorsports leverages Siemens’ digital twin technology for racing success
  • Siemens’ NX, Simcenter and Teamcenter software enable improved response times to create competitive advantages on the racetrack

Siemens PLM Software and 12-time NASCAR Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports have extended their longstanding technical partnership through the 2024 racing season. One of NASCAR’s most successful teams with a record 15 national series owner’s titles, Hendrick Motorsports began using software in its engine engineering department in the early 1990s and has partnered with Siemens PLM Software since 1997. Using Siemens PLM Software’s NX software, Simcenter software and Teamcenter software for its product development needs, Hendrick Motorsports leverages the digital twin to gain a competitive edge every week, long before the drivers are even on the track.

– If we can take advantage of a change more quickly or develop and implement new ideas faster than our competition, it can result in winning races, said Tad Merriman, engine engineering manager, Hendrick Motorsports. Using Siemens’ PLM Software provides a competitive advantage for our entire organization.

Hendrick Motorsports leverages NX software, Siemens PLM Software’s comprehensive digital product development solution, to design and optimize performance of its race cars. The design and analysis tools in NX allow team engineers to virtually build and test parts that will help maximize horsepower and performance on the track each weekend.

Teamcenter, the world’s most widely used digital lifecycle management solution, creates a digital backbone to help Hendrick Motorsports manage the entire product lifecycle for its racing operations, helping to make sure that designs meet requirements and providing the engineers and other personnel with “anywhere, anytime” access to information. In addition to CAD, CAM and CAE information, a wide variety of data, including track performance data and build sheets, are organized and linked in a way that makes sense to everyone in the organization. Using this digital twin, data is quickly and easily accessible, helping to provide consistency and efficiency across the entire team.

– The Hendrick Motorsports team is a longstanding example of just how effective the digital twin can be, particularly in a fast-paced environment such as racing, said Del Costy, senior vice president and managing director, Americas, Siemens PLM Software. This extension of our partnership is a testament to how well our organizations have worked together over the years, as is the great success the Hendrick team has achieved. We look forward to what can be accomplished over the next seven years.  

Hendrick Motorsports also leverages the Simcenter portfolio to optimize performance for everything from individual parts to the behavior of the entire car. This includes evaluating new components and systems, optimizing designs before release, performing forensic failure analysis and decoding the mechanics of a failure that has occurred, as well as understanding generally accepted performance rules.

– What we do is like having a new product introduction every week for 38 weeks, said Jim Wall, engine program director, Hendrick Motorsports. You have to reinvent yourself every single week, understanding the advantage is getting your ideas to the racetrack before someone else does. In the last decade, we have moved forward with a more optimal design from the concept stage. We are using finite element analysis as an upfront tool for the design so we don’t have to break the part before we improve it. We want to engineer components that allow our teams to showcase their talents to the best of their abilities.

Since the Hendrick Motorsports partnership with Siemens PLM Software started in 1997, Hendrick Motorsports has won over 250 NASCAR national series races and 14 championships, including 11 in the elite NASCAR Cup Series with drivers Jeff Gordon, Terry Labonte and Jimmie Johnson.