It's the end of the week, and we can now, as a result, kick-start our weekly round-up of all the new cars that the Turn 10 and Playground Games PR peeps have officially declared will be in the upcoming Forza title.
Even though there was a far more rigorous selection process for Forza Horizon than with previous Forza games (they all have to 'fit in' to the party atmosphere, so don't expect a Ford Country Squire being announced anytime soon…), there's still a varied selection of motors in this inaugural weekly reveal.
As with any other announcement of a new in-game car, we've done a brief summary of what we think of the chosen motor in both the real and virtual world. So, without further ado, lets kick things off with the…
Ford RS200 Evolution
To be eligible to compete in the barmy world of Group B rallying the the 1980s, car makers had to build a certain amount of the cars they'd be fielding in a road legal guise. Towards the end of the series' limited lifespan, Ford decided to enter, with the example being offered in showrooms being this: the RS200 Evolution.
Though by no means as ballistic or as bonkers as the rally car it spawned – that was a 450bhp special stage smasher – the R200 Evo for the public road was still a quick car in its own right. It's also a very rare machine, as only twenty were ever officially made by Ford.
Given it was designed from the ground-up to be a rally stage smasher, we'll be rather surprised if the RS200 Evo doesn't shine on the twisty roads of Forza Horizon's canyon passes or in point-to-point races.
Nissan Silvia Spec-R
If there's one thing that the Japanese are good at, it's making great drift cars. And, when it comes to Nissan, there are almost too many to choose from. However, when you look beyond the firm's iconic 'Z-cars', one does stand out: the Silvia.
In Forza Horizon, the Silvia being offered up is the Spec-R version, which comes with it all the promising 'go faster' goodies. With more strengthening in the chassis, stiffer anti-roll bars, a new type of limited-slip differential and more powerful rotors, the most driver-focused of all Silvias lived up to its image as one of the nation's most accomplished sports cars.
Given it's most famous at going sideways with the rear tyres smoking like a forest fire, and that there'll most likely be a twisty road somewhere in Forza Horizon's expansive road networl, we can assure you the Silvia Spec-R will feel right at home on Colorado's tighter ribbons of tarmac.
It may be a kit car that's built in the industrial estate heartland of Leistershire, but those who disregard the Ultima GTR do so at their peril. Over the years, the wannabe Le Mans racer for the road has proven itself to be a worthy adversary for cars costing over ten times as much as the plucky Brit.
Not only did McLaren use a couple of Ultimas as test beds for the F1's drivetrain, but it's also one of the quickest cars to ever brandish a tax disk on the windscreen, having picked up various accelerating and decelleration accolades over the years.
It's also the unofficial lap record holder around the Top Gear Test Track. Though it was a private test that wasn't affiliated with the BBC in any way, the GTR's combination of low weight (990kg dry) and ferocious power (a 530hp 6.3 GM V8) means it was able to lap the circuit at Dunsfold in 1 minute, 12.8 seconds. To put that into perspective, the Ariel Atom V8 that holds the 'official record' is nearly three seconds slower.
Not bad for a plastic car from Leicester that, if you're handy with a spanner, you can build in your garage, eh?
Ford Focus RS500
And, given the 'Horizon Festival' has been described as something that's modern, fresh and over the top, it's good to hear that the Focus RS500 shares the same traits. Not only does it look sweet, thanks to the brash bodykit and matte film finish over the black paint, but it's also rather quick and sophisticated – the 2.5 turbocharged five-pot churns out 350bhp, and Ford equipped the car with special 'RevoKnuckle' suspension that stops the motor's potency turning the Focus into a road-going bucking bronco.
As a result, the Focus RS500 has been cited as one of the greatest all-time hot hatchbacks. And, considering only 500 were ever made, its inclusion into Forza Horizon's tasty car roster means it's the closest many people will ever get to drive one. Esecially when that 'drive' consists of a huge series of races across Colorado…
And that's all the cars we've got to talk about for this week. Be sure to check back on our news page next week for Part 2 of our Forza Horizon car roster updates.