Drags races see players having to manually change gear as they race against others to the finish line along a straight circuit. Players will lose the event if they total their vehicle by overheating the engine, crash into an obstacle or start too early.
The player will start in a signal lane of a road but they can change lane by tapping the steering in their desired direction. Players are encouraged to draft opponents in order to earn a short boost in acceleration.
The winner is the player that crosses the finish line first without totalling their vehicle.
- Need for Speed: Underground/Drag
- Need for Speed: Underground 2/Drag
- Need for Speed: Underground Rivals/Drag
- Need for Speed: Most Wanted/Drag
- Need for Speed: ProStreet/Drag
- Need for Speed: World/Drag
- Shift 2 Unleashed/Drag
- Wheelie Competition - Players participate against each other by performing the longest wheelie possible.
- In Need for Speed: Underground, the player is occasionally challenged in drag races by a voiced character named Klutch.
- In Need for Speed: Carbon, there is a single unused single drag route used for testing the game mode.
- In Need for Speed: ProStreet and Shift 2: Unleashed, drag races take place in 1/4 mile (pronounced as quarter mile) or 1/2 mile tracks.