The Forza folk may be busy with Horizon announcements, but that doesn't mean Turn 10 has forgotten about Forza Motorsport 4. On the contrary, this September's 'Pennzoil Car Pack' not only boasts an eclectic array of iconic cars, but there are in fact 11 in this pack, rather than the usual 10. But don't go thinking the price will go up, as it'll still be available on the Xbox Live store for 560 Microsoft Points
It's a shame then, that only two official Forza pictures have been released as part of the press release, and there isn't even a preview trailer for it either! We won't let that stop us, though, so let's kick things off with…
2012 SRT Viper GTS-R #91 + #93
Given Forza Motorsport and Pennzoil sponsor both of this year's ALMS Viper entries, it's not surprising to find out that both of them have made their way into a car pack for Forza 4 that's associated with the famous motor oil company.
In fact, even though it's not officially in the championship running for this year's ALMS series (the SRT's were entered halfway through the season, and is only 'preparation work' for next year), they've already scored an array of top-ten finishes. Maybe perhaps, once the overall package is sorted, the new Viper outfits will emulate the success of the iconic Oreca team from yesteryears…
1968 Alfa Romeo 33 Stradale
Regularly cited as one of the most beautiful cars of all time, it's fairly easy to see why many wealthy car collectors are willing to pay through the nose to get one. Its rarity, alongside its racing pedigree and drop-dead gorgeous looks, makes it a true motoring icon.
It was also a rather ingenious little car. Not only did it come with dihedral 'butterfly' doors (an alleged world first) and magnesium components, but it also had a dual-cam 2.0 V8 with 240hp in road-going 'stradale' spec, or 270hp in racing trim.
From a modern perspective, that doesn't sound like much for an Italian supercar, but given it had so little weight to lug around – just 700kg in fact – it was enough to get the 33 Stradale to 60mph in 5.5 seconds, and onto a top speed of 160mph.
Given it was one of the most expensive cars in the world at the time – in 1968, Lamborghini Miuras cost less to buy brand new – and that only 18 were ever made, expect it to be worth quite a few in-game credits when you download it onto your Xbox hard drive in September!
1960 Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato
Aston Martin has had a long history with the Italian design studio Zagato. Over the years, the two have collaborated on various cars over the years, with the most recent joint venture being the V12 Vantage Zagato.
But that partnership had to begin somewhere, and it did in 1960 with this: the DB4 GT Zagato.
Though based on the DB4 GT, the Zagato model was noticeably different to the donor car. Not only was the bodywork redesigned to be more aerodynamic, but the Zagato was 40kg or so lighter than the DB4 GT. Oh, and with a fettled 3.7 straight-six under the bonnet, it also had a meaty 317hp to play with on the track, where it did admirably well.
Like the aforementioned Alfa 33, the Aston's construction and race tech made it a very expensive car in its day, so only 19 were ever officially made. As a result, expect to fork out a whole lotta dosh in the Forza 4 dealerships if you want one for your in-game car collection!
1958 Austin-Healey Sprite
It's often the case, when car designers scribble a noteworthy feature that gets removed at the very last minute, that the end result is something that looks awkward and weird. However, that wasn't the case with the original Sprite – the design 'defect' that's noticeably present on this car helped 'popularise' it.
When British Motor Corporation (Britain's post-war equivalent of General Motors that owned Austin-Healey at the time) was developing the Sprite, a set of retracting head lamps were planned. Later on, it soon became apparent that this wasn't possible, so the front lights were left in a permanent upright position. And thus, the defining feature of the 'Frogeye' Sprite came to be.
But it's not just the amphibian aesthetics that set this car apart from other British sports cars. Yes, it only had 43bhp, but it was a genuine hoot to drive, and the perfect car for driving enthusiasts. Heck, even Carroll Shelby used them to train his Cobra drivers who'd go on to thrash Corvettes and Ferraris on the track.
So, yeah, expect it to be an ace driver's car in Forza 4!
1953 Chevrolet Corvette
With the C7 Corvette soon to burst onto the scene in a torrent of tyre smoke, it's not surprising to hear that the motoring press is hot on the heels of Chevrolet's upcoming sports car. However, we shouldn't forget the origins of the world's oldest continuous performance car name.
In 1953, Chevrolet revealed America's take on all the European roadsters that America was snapping up like there was no tomorrow, and eventually Ford's Thunderbird. Crafted out of fibreglass and styled by the great Harley J. Earl, it certainly looked the part, and that's half the battle won when it comes to making a desirable sports car.
However, this model year of Corvette was only available with a weedy straight-six and a woeful two-speed automatic gearbox, which aren't exactly befitting of a speed machine. Thank Lord then, that the Tuning Shop means there'll be plenty of ways to improve the performance of the 'Vette in FM4!
1965 MG MGB GT
In the middle of the 1960s, if you wanted the best British sports car that money could buy, then your only choice was the Jaguar E-Type. However, for those who didn't have the spare change to splash out on Coventry's finest, then there was a 'poor man's alternative': the MGB GT.
1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR
Over the years, there have been many great Mercedes-Benz race cars. The 1901 Mercedes 35hp, the W125 'Silver Arrow, the Sauber C9, the modern-day F1 cars…the list goes on and on! But right at the top of the pile, though, is the 300 SLR.
Though hardly anything was shared with the 300SL road car (the SLR was actually based on the W196 Formula One racer), it's just as iconic as the street-legal Gullwing. Not only did it end up winning the 1955 World Sports Car Championship, but with Stirling Moss at the wheel, it also won that year's Mille Miglia, with an record breaking time of 10 hours 7 minutes 48 seconds/97mph average that still stands to this day.
To put that in perspective, the great Juan Manuel Fangio finished in second place in an identical car. And took nearly half an hour longer to complete the event.
However, the same year brought with it tragedy – an 'Uhlenhaut' SLR coupe caused the deaths of 83 people at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, after crashing into the back of an Austin-Healey that swerved to avoid a Jaguar D-Type which had speared off into the pits.
But don't let that put you off participating in online races in an SLR on the Circuit de La Sarthe!
1967 Volkswagen Karmann Ghia
In its lifetime, the platform that underpinned the original Volkswagen Beetle was used on a variety of cars. The famous Sambabus 'Campervan' used Beetle running gear, as did the Kubelwagen and Schwimmenwagen that the Germans used in WW2 (and Kazunori Yamauchi chose to model as a 'Premium car' for Gran Turismo 5).
A sporty coupe, though, isn't something you'd expect from a car that was based on a Beetle. However, that's what the Karmann Ghia is: Herbie in a fancy frock.
As a result, it won't exactly be a quick car – after all, what do you expect when even the most potent version has 55bhp on tap? Even with all the go-faster parts added, don't expect it to become an A-Class car.
Still, when it comes to looking cool whilst being creamed on the drag strip and race track, few can pull it off as well as the Karmann Ghia can.
2011 Citroen DS4
Way back in the 50s, Citroen stunned the world with the revolutionary DS. Nearly six decades later, the DS name was brought back, but was instead used on premium versions of humdrum mainstream cars. And one example of this is the Citroen DS4.
Essentially a Citroen C4 with some new bodywork and a raised ride-height, 'Citroenistes' around the world have understandably protested that this is, in almost all regards, the exact opposite of what the DS stood for.
Still, at least the DS4 showed that, despite the higher centre of gravity over the donor car, the platform that underpinned the C4 could make a decent handling car, and the one Turn 10 modeled has the same 1.6 200hp turbocharged four-banger that can also be found in the Mini Cooper S, Peugeot RCZ and Citroen DS3 Racing.
And, courtesy of the livery editor and tuning shop, you can give the DS4 a bit of extra kudos by painting it in matte grey, boosting the power up to 256hp and fettling with the brakes and suspension so you can have an in-game replica of the DS4 Racing Concept.
1983 GMC Vandura G-1500
The world may have a load of iconic commercial vehicles – the Ford Transit and F-150,the VW SambaBus and the Citroen H-Van, to name a few – but not many of them have been stars on the silver screen. This one has, though, and if you know your TV history, we don't need to state the name of the show it became a star in.
If your knowledge of American cult classic action shows is a bit rusty, then this might jog your memory a tad: the GMC Vandura was the van used in The A-Team, and is therefore one of the coolest vans of all time. I mean, how can B.A Baracus' daily driver not be cool?
As a result, the Vandura is simply begging for a trip to the Livery Editor. But if you make the schoolboy error of forgetting about the grey paint above the red stripe, yo gonna get yo ass back to the paint shop and do it again, fool! (Yes, we know that was a rubbish attempt at imitating Mr. T's most badass character…)
And that's the September DLC pack all wrapped up. Be sure to check back next month for, we assume, another report on downloadable content in Forza 4. Also, don't worry if you need a Forza news fix between now and then, as we're also doing our Horizon weekly car reveal round-up as well!