Beater or Sleeper? COTW! Week 81: Teg (2001 Acura Integra Type R)

  • Thread starter Obelisk


The Apollo Intensa Emozione, rolls right off the tongue doesn’t it? :P

As SPD’s already pointed out, the Apollo name dates back to when Roland Gumpert started his own company and named his car the Gumpert Apollo, A road car with a race car appearance and feel.

That car packed a Audi 4.2 V8 with twin turbos which made around 650hp in base trim and nearly 800hp in Race trim. :embarrassed:

The Apollo IE packs a Ferrari derived 6.3 V12 making 780hp and sends that power to the rear via a 6 speed paddle shift Sequential built by Hewland, who given their track record, certainly know a thing or two about building a race gearbox. :cool:

The Apollo IE weighs in at 1250kgs and thanks to its rather polarising styling, can produce more downforce at 186mph than what it weighs while pushing on to over 200mph. :drool:

The gearing on the 6 speed once again reflects its racecar feel, long 1st gear with the other 5 gears getting shorter to keep that V12 singing past 9000rpm.

In terms of upgrades, you have two Racing engine swaps, the slightly less powerful, but much lighter 4.7 V12 from the F50 GT or the more powerful and still lighter 7.2 V8 from the RJ Anderson Pro 2 Truck.

BUT, if absolute power is your game, throw twin turbos on to the stock engine and you can take it to over 1500hp and if you have the Welcome Pack version of the IE, that can go to over 1600hp fully tuned. :eek:

Now for the price and this is where things get interesting, you can buy it at the Autoshow for 1.5 Million or in the low 800k range at Auction, But if you have the Welcome Pack and want a second Apollo IE WP version, it costs the exact same in the Autoshow AND it’s pre-tuned to the top of S2. :confused:

To top it off, the WP version(if you have the Welcome Pack) can be bought at Auction for under 200k. :crazy:

So if you have the Welcome Pack and don’t care about collecting cars, The normal Apollo IE will get overlooked by most folks.

So to put it simply, It’s a really good Neutral on its own merits, but compared to its Welcome Pack clone, it’s a Beater.

Verdict: Neutral(;)👍)
Very brief. Long week. Also found potential avenue into IRL racing.


Apollo IE:
  • Very good handling
  • Pretty decent top end
  • Looks vaguely like a Furai

  • Looks vaguely like an overstylized Furai
  • Top end isn't enough for S2 on half the tracks
  • Welcome Pack edition exists

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This week we're taking a look at the single most expensive Ferrari to ever exist.

Our car for week 78 is the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO.


To test this overpriced nonsense, we're taking it to the Arch of Mulegé road circuit where we can smash it against the fences without financial consequences.
SPD Writes Car Of The Week: Week 78 - Ferrari 250 GTO


There are various ways to define the perfect classic car. Ferrari's homolagated 250 GTO is one of them that ticks a few boxes too many in the history books.

When it comes to the most iconic classic sports car, one can think of so many answers for this. One such car that can be bang on the money for such a question would be Jaguar's breakthrough E-Type Coupe in 1961. While the Jag was iconic on its own for its beauty, so is Ferrari's main runner GT car at the time: the 250 GT.

But beauty won't win races, as some of the higher ups in Ferrari have expressed their worries quite vocally in terms of Jaguar's racing success racing against the likes of Cobras and Aston Martins. So Ferrari decides they have a shot in the Group 3 GT racing series, but they want to develop more than just a quick body swap.

After a rather eventful development process, with Enzo firing the original developers over a dispute, the car was finally complete in early 1962, succeeding the 250 GT in the form of the radically designed 250 GTO (Gran Turismo Omologato). Powered with the same mythical Tipo 168/62 Colombo 3 liter V12 from the Testa Rossa Le Mans Prototype, the car brought out 300 horsepower on a 1 ton body. Inside the car would be nothing but steering wheel and certain gauges.

Interestingly, the car's noted to be quite a danger to the test drivers of Ferrari: a list including Sir Stirling Moss, Willy Mairesse, Lorenzo Bandini and Giancarlo Baghetti. This would mean Ferrari would have to control the buyers to not just be the overly rich.. whatever rich people are in the 60s. Enzo himself also handled this approval process when the homologation models started going on sale.

On the track, the car did end up overpowering the competition. For the 2 years it raced from 1962 to 1964, you're just going to hear it winning race after race, getting the maximum amount of points in its debut year.. It took 2 years before the car got competition in Shelby's Daytona Coupe, getting it's taste of defeat on its final year before being replaced by the 275 GTB: a nicer grand tourer, but I'm unsure if it can take out the 250 GTO's incredible reputation.

And the next time the GTO name would be used in Prancing Horse name, it would be towards MY favorite Ferrari of all time: the Group B twin turbo monster known as the 288 GTO. You gotta let me have that dance with the keyboard on that car, good sir! Yes, I know I admit The Sentinel was playing rather loudly upon making this writeup.

Coincidentially carrying a PI of 612 like a certain grand tourer Ferrari of the early 2000s, this old Ferrari sits at the lower end of B class. In its ridiculously sparse class of Classic Racers, you really can't bring the Ferrari to compete with any cars in this class without conforming to a certain class end.

And again with its exclusive ownership, you think you can just grab one in the Autoshow or Auction House. Nope. While valued at 50,000,000 credits, this masterpiece unfortunately is one of the few Barn Finds in the game, locking it out to being accessed aside the RNG moment the game gives you one, and takes its sweet time rebuilding the car behind an in game paywall. A shame, but I so happen to have played the game since launch, so I have my sole one ready to go.



It's not hosting a classic racecar festival anytime soon, but the Arch of Mulegé Circuit can house this kind of demo event for a legendary prancing horse just fine.


It's nice to finally see a form of challenge by driving classic cars really fast around here. Even more so while we're weathering a big storm in this.. desert country.

What? Whaddaya mean that's not a classic?

It doesn't have to be everyone's classic. I say 1 year plus of indirect representation means it's definitely OUR classic, amirite?

"Race through the iconic Arch of Mulegé and follow the twisting back-streets of this quintessential Mexican village, before blasting along the riverbank straight."

Last we handled old Mulege's circuit would be with Mexico's own VUHL 05 all the way back in Week 2.. which until today really ticks me off on how that's the only Mexican car we have in game. Some decisions with licensing here is complete bul[BLEEP]t, I'm sure. But I'm sure the devs can pull a few strings. As I've mentioned on that other COTW universe.. games can compensate you in exposure. It's how I know a LOT of cars these days.

Mixing slow segments and fast straights, this miniaturize race circuit suspiciously shaped like a famed track in Catalonia. But unlike said race circuit, I don't find myself enjoying the track. There are all kinds of obstacles placed at where me: guy who likes to run really wide while racing, would end up hitting these places, and dodging them would be another issue I have to take care of. It's also quite dusty.. this might be pretty bad for the Ferrari, actually. Speaking of which, this location has a Horizon Wilds event, namely the Mulege Town Scramble, that I noticed we haven't quite touched yet.

This is also the track where I declared the first ever Mark of Zen for the VUHL 05RR. Not important, but I have to note Mark of Zen for something later.


Ferrari's have been placed at the top of the car world food chain, but sometimes their egos just run too high for anyone normal to like them.

- As I mentioned with the interior, it's just laminated wooden steering and gauges. There's absolutely nothing for luxuries in here, even though that's what Ferraris are known for then and today. The view is nice and clear, and I've still got questions on why the car is sporting right hand drive.. We've also got bucket seats because there's something about this car that says it's going to hurt.

- With a horrendously long first gear, I would say you'd be okay without the launch control on the car. Not like it even exists even though Ferraris these days have them. But you're not going to change your pace with a different launch method, so you're going to be fine on or off. Just be wary you're going to be at a slight angle if you do push it without launch control. This thing's V12 can rev up to the 9200 RPM range, and you do want to be away from the lower RPM zone since it's really sluggish in that area. Shift as late as that mentioned 9000 RPM zone.

- Carrying old school disc brakes, the Ferrari would only brake for you proper if you do it early, don't engine brake violently, and not be at an angle. And you mess up one of those rules, you're going to get thoroughly violated with some fishtailing. And even if you do brake properly, you'll find the car can take a quick angle. Combining the age old tactic of trail braking while engine braking can lead to some disastrous moments of the car's rear grip losing itself, while not having enough criteria to drift.

- Here's something I haven't touched in forever: the curb review. Unlike our last undertaking around here in Week 2, this car is fine taking on curbs, which probably explains why many choice tunes with this car is an off-road tune. With the T70, the Ford GT40s, the Cobra Daytona and maybe more, this is one of the most PI dominant car classes after all for racing, dirt especially. I have one of these rallying in Horizon 4, but BOO HOO BARN FIND MEANS ONLY ONE sort of ruins the vibe for doing such ridiculous conversions.

- Something to note about the handling is how it's actually okay if you don't do anything to unsettle it. The most common thing that happens to me is when I accelerate on a turn: if not enough to cause wheelspin, it gives the car a good dab of understeer. This is something you're bound to get at low speed turns too, but the risk of wheelspin is much higher there, especially if you don't control it. So wheelspin at low speeds, understeer at higher speeds. Nasty car for those who want something disciplined.

- It's been a while since we had a car that actually wants proper traction control on your inputs. This is especially apparent when the corner you're exiting from has a speed that's at the higher end of the gear you exit with. You can counter this by having a gear above the usual when turning. Or not having an instant response on your traction.

- Carrying some tall gears, these are much too tall to make use of the power it has. However, unless you're staying at RPMs under 5000, the car's acceleration is actually solid. I didn't quite look at the powerband or the gearing setup, but they're quite good for something this old. And since it's old, you don't need to shift much. I find myself alternating between 2nd and 3rd, with 1st being much too risky to play due to issues in engine braking and general traction in that zone.

- I'll use this segment to curse once again to the quickly rebuilding wooden fencing by the town gate with the cacti. Definitely an overlooked thing. How do they do that?

- You're never going to feel slow driving this car, if anything. It makes you feel thankful that the car actually handles the bumpy town surface better than, say, Week 2's VUHL 05RR. So as long as you got in control of the car's handling tendencies and stay away from the curbs, you are free to put the power down, traction being the only factor.

- So, what now is the speed you need to take on the track's first turn without braking? For the VUHL, that's at 160, and for this much older car, it's 120. And by using the car's soft suspension to lose some speed on serious angle, I can cheat out 2-3 MPH going up the hill. Like the VUHL, this is incredibly satisfying.

- Final tip? Umm.. emm.. this is not the car to pick up if you're having trouble with one of its many challenges. However, it's I would say the perfect car to bridge your comfort zone to classic, more unfriendly rides that reward those with the skill with better pace. There are a lot of cars in this jurisdiction, so there isn't a right answer to hone your dexterity for potential killers of beginners.

I did spend a good time here, but I find myself challenged quite nicely. Not quite a Mean Machine, but it's quite close. Yes, the Miura is harder to drive.. don't get me started on the Auto Union, that 2 superchargers is pure psycho energy. The devs really should consider unlocking the Barn Finds to be for sale in some form. There are certain cars I want more of.. coming from me, what I can think of immediately would be the XJR-15 and the Mustang Fastback.

250 GTO.jpg

Mulegé gets savaged again and again, and I find myself gunning through with a best of 1:09.958.

I told myself: 1 minute 10 is fine as is, and that's been the case for quite some time until THIS baby came out of nowhere. Man, I don't enjoy this track at all unless I bring something small and agile.. the VUHL, of course, right? This car is small too, but the agility is questionable. Not something unusual for its age however.


I hinted it unintentionally in a certain spot yesterday, but it's time to take out the keys to more tested and analyzed machines for yet another Throwback.

Throwbacks are the time where I get an excuse to gather up older COTW members in this week's performance range and purpose. The whole thing's made just to see how well this week's combo would fit with a different car. Even though we got PI ranging in a certain zone, there's no competitiveness or any saying what car's better or not, unless you're a certain Alpine duking out with a certain Mitsubishi. If you're familiar with me doing Showcases with them fancy ass tables, that's not going to be here too.

When one thinks of Ferrari, you obviously must mention its antithesis Lamborghini, which leads me to begin with..

Nominee #49, Sleeper, Mark of Zen #14, Mean Machine #2


As I often corrupt that known Ludacris hit's chorus, backed by Thomas the Tank Engine theme song: MOO, [BLEEP]! GET OUT THE WAY! GET OUT THE WAY, [BLEEP], GET OUT THE WAY!!

Hailed as Lamborghini's first flagship car, and the one that paved the way to the supercar definition, the Miura is both a crazed up carburetted legend and a completely undrivable menace. Possessing an engine with similar valve count, would the leap to a mid engined layout prove something?

Miura P400.jpg

Who let the bulls out? Well, not me, but the Miura sets a first best of 1:09.792 before we wrangle it back to the Festival.

Speed up Turn 1: 122 MPH

It's a step up from the Ferrari in every way. For an extra 14 PI, the Miura is harder to get consistent in, harder to push, and harder to keep stable. It's also much wider, so the obstacles just keep coming in with my 250 GTO line. But is that 2 tenths worth the hassle? Ignoring the PI, it is. This car is much more satisfying in more than just presentation. But in the end, I'm giving props to the 250 GTO for being very close to this with such a PI deficit.

Nominee #18, Sleeper


Braking test? More like when is this piece of Pyrenees Black coming to the GT7 COTW? A giant of a man awaits inside.

Taking the Gran Turismo Omologato name to Japan, the Mitsubishi GTO is easily the most beefed up of the 280 PS agreement bunch. An AWD menace with a twin turbo V6, the GTO is reputed to be this agreement's straight line king, which I'll try to take advantage on the big straight.


If we can't drive tanks in this game, Mitsubishi's AWD giant can provide an alternative, with lap times like 1:10.729 for a best.

Speed up Turn 1: 122 MPH

The GTO's a breath of fresh air, offering safe and consistent laps, while having to tackle understeer instead of the myriad of other issues noted with the classic Italians. The acceleration, for a twin turbo, is a bit short in comparison. Goes to show weight does do something in the long run. Though I feel this is the first we note of its understeer, but then again, the track we got to try out this car formally is a dirt event.

Nominee #6, Sleeper


Another homologation special and fellow Barn Find rescue. But of course, my mind goes to also another important announcement: screw Cathedral Circuit.

It wouldn't be complete without another homologation special to add into the mix. The Carrera RS is known for being Porsche's first take on that name, and it's maybe a 911 that breaks the mold for being overly generic. It's light, small and incredibly dangerous. But how about we take those risks to the test..

911 Carrera RS.jpg

Channeling the dominating presence of one Kurzheck, the 911 Carrera RS achieves a best of 1:10.912.

Speed up Turn 1: 120 MPH

It only got up slower because it can't keep its power. On the whole, the Porsche's main strength is its handling. It's not hard to push, and its overall turning profile is manageable and disciplined, meaning you can't go wrong unless you do something sudden. And if you think the time's not impressive, do remember this car's PI is placed at the bottom of the list, while the rest averages around the 620 area.

Speaking of around..

Nominee #35, Neutral-Sleeper


The urge to not say the Passion of Dr. Wankel gets harder as always, but this one's not too terribly passionate by its fans.

Last we took out the RX-8, it was a doozy of a car. To kick off the last of the rotaries, it didn't impress with lackluster performance, big shoes to fill, and questionable looks. I'm starting to think it should've been a Beater, but I think this Throwback might change my mind.

RX-8 R3.jpg

Taking it out for a ride, the RENESIS powered rotary circulates through with its NEW best of 1:09.326.

Speed up Turn 1: 122 MPH

I'm having thoughts on the RX-8 being a handling car or a speedy one. It's definitely got that Jack-of-all-trades feeling in it. It's also not even a hard car to drive in these short circuits.. longer venues like its designated test road Copper Canyon Sprint however brings out its not so favorable traits. I noticed its got pretty poor top end, which the 250 GTO and the Miura seem to have gotten an edge ahead in terms of in this PI segment.

Nominee #43, Sleeper


The latest quintessential roadster returns. I'm unsure if there's any other car aside the RX-8 above and DAT MINI that's gotten a double dash of Test and Throwback.

Another Mazda? Fret not. It's the money making, turn taking, circuit racing, king of the tuning ring. Being an owner of an NA means I will vouch for its already proven and tried successors, so I put the car last because of course I can. How will this tiny roadster take on with what I can see is big boy V12s and an AWD twin turbo V6?

MX-5 ND.jpg

A young heart born from generations of success, the ND grips and charges through Mulegé with a best of 1:10.126.

Speed up Turn 1: 122 MPH

Looks to me this is evidence that the main place that sets the pace around here is the big straight. Because the ND is just an amazing car to drive around here for this PI range. The handling is better than that of the Porsche.. but it came with one big sacrifice: top end. That part was severely lacking.

I promised a Throwback with another Mazda, but I guess this will have to do. They're just so much more fun to do in shorter bursts rather than a full blown road. Let's prepare the 250 GTO for a send off.



What is the Ferrari 250 GTO? It is..

Shane McMahon's theme song in car form.

One of the most expensive cars to ever be sold around the world in reputable auction houses, the 250 GTO gets a nice Sleeper from me. Challenging cars that have this learning curve, but eventually reward you in the end always seems to do that for me. Not to mention unless you're into old fashioned speedsters, nobody gives a hoot about Ferrari unless it's mid engined and made not to kill someone. Ferrari's back then were fierce and deadly. These days, they're just fierce. A brand of proven racers start making a big name somewhere, and here's one from one of the biggest car corps of performance out there.

Kind of a shame we get only one in our Mini Mexico tour as the Superstar. I wouldn't mind having 3 more.


I won't do re-reviews, but Week 2 SPD did say I want to give the track another go with the stock VUHL 05RR. And here we are again.. yes I'm still peeved we're not wearing seatbelts. Horizon is an incredibly dangerous world, ain't it?

The Ferrari 250 GTO, the former ‘Most Expensive Car Sold At Auction” title holder, a title it held on to for what feels like decades. :P

It’s a good thing it’s a barn find as its value of 50 million credits is eye watering(Though compared to the new most expensive car, it’s chump change.), but that does mean you’ll be waiting for quite some time while it’s being restored. :embarrassed:

Powered by Ferrari’s legendary 3.0 Colombo V12, it’s making 300hp, 216ft-lbs of torque, pushing a 2299lb car along through a 5 speed manual gearbox driving the rear wheels.

As vintage racers go, there’s certainly one of the greats, 36 were built, most have great racing records, Enzo himself vetted everyone who wanted one, the list goes on really.

There was an even rarer version of the 250 GTO, the 330 GTO, of which only 3 were reportedly built. :eek:

The 250 number is to show the displacement of each of the 12 cylinders, 250cc X 12 = 3.0 litres, that means the 330 GTO has a 4.0 litre V12 which makes 400hp. :drool:

As for driving the 250 GTO, it’s got race car gearing on its 5 speed, long 1st gear with shorter gears after that, braking is decent, but it doesn’t take too much to lock them up if you’re not braking straight or are too aggressive on the downshifts without a solid blip of the throttle.

Managing the power is also a challenge, get it wrong and you’ll either light up the rear tyres in slow turns or get understeer in faster turns.

Get it right however.. And it’ll reward you greatly. :D

As Barn Finds go, they don’t get more expensive than the 250 GTO, but unless you paid to skip the restoration process, the only money you’ll ever spend on it is in upgrading it.

Speaking of which..

You have 2 Engine swaps for the 250 GTO, both V8’s and both are from Ferrari’s, the 3.5 V8 from the F355 and the 4.5 V8 from the 458 Italia.

There is an option for twin turbos for the stock V12 and you can have Vintage White Wall tyres installed too.

Overall, in stock form it’s everything that made Ferrari great in its day and helped develop its reputation into a household name in the automotive world.

These days?

Well you can certainly argue something got lost along the way to now, especially with how they are currently doing in F1, among other things. :indiff:

But on its own merits, it’s always an Icon, a car that can back up its huge asking price.

Verdict: Sleeper 😉👍

Oh and one last thing, that new most expensive car?

While technically not in the game, the race version of it is in the game and it gets the road cars value of a 143 million credits. :odd:

That car is the Mercedes 300 SLR. :cheers:
Another day, another door. This one is a little dusty, but it's a much more welcoming door than the one at HQ.

"Welcome back, superstar! How did it go with your bosses?" Rami calls out, bounding over with a turbo in hand. I recognize it as one of the new turbos for my rally MX5 project.

"Hey Rami!" I say back, holding my hands out to take the turbo off him. He hands it over. "Things went well. We were given the Prius, and it was actually nicer than I thought."

"Awesome... Listen, amigo. The Ferrari guys, they're getting nervous. They want you and Vic to be done with these 250s or they're pulling their agreement with us."

"Don't worry. That's what I'm here to do. ...And what we have Esther over at HQ for."

Alrighty, so we've got one of the most expensive cars in the world this week, the 250 GTO. Or rather, it would be, were it not for the car being a free-to-all Barn Find in this game.

Since the car is free to everyone, it would stand to reason that the experience it offers is either necessary or particularly beneficial. Let's a little look under the hood, then.

The 250 GTO starts off at 612 PI, near the bottom of B class, and that comes with a statline of 6.4/3.6/3.5/2.5/2.8/5.4.

A lot of those stats are kind of pitiful for B class, but that Speed stat of 6.4 is very impressive.

The 250 is powered by a 2.95 liter V12 producing 300 HP and 216 ft-lbs, all of which is pushing around a mere 2,299 lbs. The axle distribution for the car is 52:48, so just short of a perfect split over both ends.

The old-school manual gearbox is set up with race spacing, ultimately this gets it to a top speed of 175 mph. This, paired with the big V12 and the relatively low curb weight, means that the 250 will run 0-60 in 6.0 seconds and 0-100 in 13.0 seconds. Fairly modest by current standards but pretty quick by early 1960s standards.

The car's differential appears to be defaulted to very low numbers, with the Accel roughly 3x as high as the decel. I don't think either one is above a setting of 30.

The default suspension is fairly soft and floaty which struck me as odd given that this is supposed to be a masterpiece of Italian engineering... then again, this was the early 60s. The upside is that it does allow for the car to handle the dirt quite well. Maybe don't disclose that to Ferrari, though...

Some interesting things I've noticed:
  • The large engine and high power makes the car pretty good in higher speed sections across Mexico
  • The engine ALSO makes it much easier for the car to climb uphill, making it a good choice for places with a net positive elevation change like Volcan Sprint (or any other pertinent hillclimb)
  • The car seems to keep producing power past its redline, up to about 9200 RPM. Rev it out to 9,000 and shift there.
  • It's unclear whether the car has aero or not, but it does actually lose a little lateral G load at 120 MPH despite feeling a lot more stable at those speeds
  • Takes a lot to get the brakes to lock up, but the brakes are terrible so... Make of that what you will.
  • Don't get loose in this car. Seriously. It's a little unpredictable on the other side of grip.

I took it around Arch of Mulege and... wasn't terribly impressed by it. Just a hair too finicky for my liking.

1:14.017 is my best effort there and I just can't be bothered to try to learn the car more.

It gets a  Neutral in my book.
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It's 2 to 1 in favor of Sleeper, so Sleeper it is.

Our nomination this week goes to a driver who's now joining us in the misadventure we collectively call "Seven Haven", or Gran Turismo 7 as we all know it.

@SomePlayaDude has nominated the Ford Lotus Cortina.

To test this classic, we're taking it to Las Laderas to see if it's worth the time or if it's just another rustbox.
It's 2 to 1 in favor of Sleeper, so Sleeper it is.

Our nomination this week goes to a driver who's now joining us in the misadventure we collectively call "Seven Haven", or Gran Turismo 7 as we all know it.

@SomePlayaDude has nominated the Ford Lotus Cortina.

To test this classic, we're taking it to Las Laderas to see if it's worth the time or if it's just another rustbox.

Just shown the wife this and it's made her day thank you. Her Dad had a Lotus Cortina straight from the factory in Cheshunt where they lived at the time. She fondly remembers loads of journeys in that car.

Cheers 👍
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SPD Writes Car Of The Week: Week 79 - Ford Lotus Cortina


Alright, baby.
It's COTW time.
Do me and the other drivers proud on seeing the greatest example of a frequently winning racing saloon car still being raced today.

So, I intentionally withheld this writeup from completion until quite far in. I actually got all the writing, analyzing and opinionating done on Friday, with the pictures on Saturday. The proof's in my Media album for my Forza Horizon 5. Why? Well, I'm horrendously biased with this entry. And since it's Sunday not Wednesday this is coming up, that whole plan's a bust.

When I said all my nominees turned personal after HOW DARE YOU, here's the very car I put on top of all those others in both Horizons I've played, even slowly rising through that list for cars I want to see personally, perhaps own. And you might be seeing this statement repeat over and over again.

Once upon a time.. actually it was a few years ago, I subscribed to the Goodwood Road and Racing on YouTube. Now, there are 3 things that came from this: one: why haven't I done this before? Two: some amazing clean classic car racing with quite a great selection of names in each classic. And three: the cars themselves. And hooh, I thought I knew what was raced in this era. Aside from the Ford Galaxies and the Studebaker Lark Daytona, another car stood out: the Lotus tuned Mk1 Ford Cortina.

This Cortina was born under the watchful eyes of Ford and Lotus collaborating to make the ultimate homologation special. As the British car industry was changing in the early 60s, Ford needed some smaller company to get started working in these new times, and Lotus wanted a client to get them going in the racing world. The relationship formed as soon as news came about Lotus having a former Ford designer penning down their super lightweight Elan, and how it was going to use a Cosworth tuned, derivative twin cam engine from Ford's own Anglia.

A message was sent to Colin Chapman, saying we, Ford, want these little monocoque shelled saloons for motorsport and you're the right kind of bloke to do it for us, signed Henry Ford II. With a 7 year production run from 63 to 70, the Cortina was melded together from a special twin cam Ford Kent, which was a 1.4 liter inline 4 engine, mated that to the Lotus Elan's 4 speed, producing about 115 horsepower while carrying just under a ton's worth of weight.

While Ford had provided the body to work, Lotus had the work of making the build, including its famed suspension work, and providing the little things inside the car that give the car its race winning credentials. By January of 1963, after some issues regarding the engine, the Ford Lotus Cortina was born for the track.

And when it got into racing, it was winning or just getting results in anything it touches. From rallying, saloon car racing, to touring cars, it was light, turns real well, and revs really high. To the public, it went with the Consul Cortina Sports Special, but it went through history as the Ford Lotus Cortina. If not me, the car's represented well from various known British names such as Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart and Sir John Whitmore.

If you thought this car's history, I would like to prove you sort of wrong with the car raced prominently on Goodwood today. The two Cortinas I drive now and then are painted under BTCC racer Andrew Jordan when he races them. Aside from self interest, this Cortina has one game to play in this writeup, and it's to see that D class cannot be considered a complete joke as it houses these Sleepers from left to right. We've saw that with the likes of the MB, the NA2 MX-5.. perhaps others to come.

With 389 PI, the Cortina rides its way into the middling area of D class. Unsure if intentional or not with its car class choice, it finds itself at the bottom of the Classic Racers, with the car ahead of it: the Jaguar MK II that it's gone along with on the track is 59 PI ahead. The Cortina and said Jag would also be the only cars in this class that sell on the Autoshow for a 5 figure sum, on which the Cortina carrying a 50,000 credits price tag. Over the days I find myself doing whatever I please in Mini Mexico, I would collect 5 of these. One's already tuned for B, and I will be taking out one of the stock ones for the analysis today.


As per my intentions, the Cortina gets to zip and slide around Las Laderas.


The MINI might come every week, but this week's nominee is the very car that's incredibly endearing to me, and dare I say the closest to my heart in the franchise. I would be stoked to see it in some other form of media.. said sentence is both applicable to this and this MINI.

"This street race is held in the rolling hills west of Guanajuato, darting along narrow country roads. It's a good place to learn the ropes of Street Scene racing."

About ropes.. there isn't any ropes on Street Scene. By the way, I didn't expect a noob friendly Street Scene event in any form. But if this is what they say it is, I'll just have a quick look. Just by the Stadium, the track offers a whole menagerie of not challenging portions travelling north, then follows to a hook going south. It's a quick little race, and there's really not much to it other than driver skills if one is to master it.


So, with the Anglia nominated a big while back having an unreasonable opinion, it's safe to say the Cortina has some avenging to do...

MCU Avengers theme plays, put away that radio! That theme song's epic intentions are after all ruined by the memes.

- Where do you think I'm cross when it comes to the interior? Come on, if you clicked the link I offer in these more recent reviews, you'd see it immediately. That's right: for a purely British made Ford, they instead got us an American spec car with its left hand drive. But I say there's nothing really of note to ruin the experience, so this is pretty much a pass. Before you say it's missing a rollcage, well, this isn't the Goodwood spec racer we got.

- To start off the festivities, the given launch with launch control on is rather tame. But if you put your Goodwood goggles on, you can turn off the launch control for the kind of mild but unf wheelspinning launch that is incredibly addicting, satisfying, just completely left field.. for a D class car! Your pace won't differ much with either it on or off. Push the car to the top of the gear to find it redlines at the 7800 RPM zone, and I do shift quite high in, at around the 7600 area, gradually lowering but still in the 7000 RPM zone with every passed gear.

- Taking into account the braking, the car does it.. quite exceptional. Not only does the brakes stop the car quite firmly and quickly, but for a rear biased setup, it won't go so far to try and get you to crash into a tree backwards, and you die. A lot of the lightweight cars in the game usually has the braking feel far too dangerous to make use, maybe if it unsettles it too greatly or is way too biased to the rear. Uhh, I nominated this car so I shouldn't try to get a significant bias toward it so soon, but it's THE BRAKES!!

- Handling wise, you're going to get a Lotus tuned car, and of course that means it can turn. It's in the region we notice with cars like pretty much all the MX-5s we've reviewed in the past: you don't want to go all the way in or you're going to lose speed. For this case, it's just the mildest variant of this issue, with the car able to take turns, not have much issue in grip of handling. I've also noticed you can do some mini drifts when you put the throttle down during turning: a term I use when I play NFS Unbound due to its nitro gathering mechanics. On the whole this all feels like a race car.. This is D class! You don't need this much stability!

- Okay, at long last we can take on its first flaw: the gear setup. Looking at the whole setup, you can see that the width of each gear is the opposite of what you want in a race car. Aside from 1st, the final 4th is longest, followed by 3rd and then 2nd. Strange, but at least their RPM positions are in the right place. Phew. It's flawed, meaning.. wait.. if you're into the transmission related handling techniques such as short shifting, engine braking.. even trail braking, this car is just plain excellent at taking those. Aww man! Not to mention if your shifting's at the right places, the Cortina will stay above 5000 RPM: where all the juicy power is at. Moving on..

- Only having low amounts of power of 112 means you don't want to take the Cortina where there are big upward inclines, being before the first turn and by the 65% area. Taking the Cortina to the ones provided on this track will render its acceleration to null. However, just like this feeling with the MB, the car just wants you to keep pushing it. There sure is a kind of magic with these low powered featherweight speedsters.

- As we head into traction, I figure with a car like this you shouldn't have any issue with the traction. Of course this is true; you're welcome to have a complete 100 input in any moment until you get to improving the power. Let's move straight to off-roading. Since the track's a Barry R free haven, I try to repeatedly push the car's limits in the cornering department, because it's so good at it. But of course it's not THAT good, so there are cases where it would go off-road. Now, I'm not sure what compound of tire this is, but it feels like it's a car that's born to go off-road. I know I mentioned it's a rally racer too at the beginning writeup, but before the analysis I couldn't convince myself of that talent.

- So, the notes this week are quite extensive, eh? Well, it hints something, does it? Getting the car to turn properly in the corners comes down to braking then turning. Normal advice. The Cortina has a special little quirk that gets it to turn mid corner by just putting down the throttle during then. And while it skids a bit, it's not that big should you need a little bit extra angle getting out.

- Looking at the track.. okay, I guess the in game blurb about being a good stomping grounds for Street Scene newcomers is kind of right. It's not gimmicky, the hardest turns have easy answers, and well.. again with my Rivals run.. I make use of the game's most prominent way to get low times. I rather not say what it is, but it's really just worth mention.

- As old as it is, the best thing I can part about having this Cortina on full power is that you have to treat it like a baby. It's got a good fraction of race car traits in it, while carrying even less of its downsides. And if you're taking it on Street Scene events like this one.. don't be afraid to bring it to the dirt. The thing is with babies is that while you must take care of them, you must also ensure your time as a parent to them is the best they got. So, how did I raise my baby Cortina? Well, if you look at my best time here, you'll see.. kind loving, but also willing to surpass the limits.

You know, I've been wondering none of my runs look like the sort of action this car goes through when it races on Goodwood. In game, it feels more like.. we found the closest thing to a race car on D class. I'm trying to see from every conceivable angle on how this car has flaws, see if I can balance out my bias. And I can't find it. In all honesty, the Cortina is by all means such a pleasure to drive and learn to make the best of it.

The combo's made by me, but it's not stoppping the incredibly disciplined and race tuned Cortina as yet another easy Mark of Zen awardee from me, holding the 20th case of this award.

Ford Lotus Cortina.jpg

With or without training wheels, my extended time with the Cortina has it slip through and around these training roads with a best of 3:03.542.

No, I don't feel amazing or spectacular with this run, even though it took me 2 hours to attain it. Why? Well, because.. it's better explained if you can find the Rivals ghost.. But the journey to that was just me going around saying things like 'WOW it's a race car and can house 4 adults no problem'.


Even though it's the creme de la creme of cars in this game for me, I can't seem to find a proper place for some after analysis action. I was going to get a Test started, but it might get my imaginary shouting doctor worried. So let's end.


What is the Ford Lotus Cortina? It is..

The all around king of classic British racing.

Very easy Sleeper, but do I dare say.. another top sleeper?

It feels that way, but this is me. The bias towards one of my all time favorites is strong. However you feel and I feel are of course different, but when I want to classify something, I try to stray away from personal leaning towards interest. And after this analysis is done, I say it's not opinion anymore, but a justification. No wonder certain people were saddened when the Mondeo was discontinued.

Should it be a top or not, it still doesn't escape the fact it's a Sleeper. I can't think of another car that handles THIS well in this low a class. Not to mention how under the radar it lies in the game, since the Elan it shares a lot of parts with is more frequently seen. Also I had my angry shoes ready when they revealed the car wasn't going to make the cut when they initially revealed the official Horizon 5 car list. Thank goodness I never had to wear them.


Even though I found this car late in Horizon 4, the first minutes; yes, you heard it: minutes, of me getting into opening up Horizon 5 was just me getting this car back to form.

The green Cortina joined my just as iconic personal favorite: Week 16's 'THE BEAST' in that as well.. that car was my first ever wheelspin reward.. dum ba dum ba dummm bad dum ba dum...

So the Ford Cortina, specifically the Lotus tuned Cortina.

1.6 litres of competition ready, road legal and practicality.

Instantly recognisable from its white body with green side stripes, the Lotus tuned Cortina was given an overhauled rear suspension, lightweight alloy panels, lighter casings for the gearbox and differential which helped keep weight down to just over 2000lbs. :cool:

Power was sent to the rear via a 4 speed manual gearbox, with a close ratio version available from the factory.

Capable of sub 10 second 0-60 sprints and topping out at 112 mph, it was THE car in the 1600cc class and in the hands of the legendary Jim Clark, it ran roughshod over its rivals in the 1964 British Saloon Car Championship and was also successful in other Saloon Car Championships across the world, even notching up a few endurance races wins too. ;)

Even in 1966, it was still racking up class wins, heck it’s still a force to be reckoned even today in Historic Touring Car events, Goodwood being a prime example of that.

It’s handling in game is well behaved, but you can feel it’s limits as it’s open diff does spin the inside wheel in low speed turns, but overall not too impeding.

The price at the Autoshow drops in at 50k, but you can swipe one at Auction for as low as 13k.

Overall, The OG Fast Ford(with Lotus’s help) is worthy of the praise it’s gathered throughout its lifespan. :cheers:

Verdict: Sleeper 😉👍
From one Lotus to another, we're taking a swing at the 2016 Lotus 3-Eleven. The track this week will be the Wetland Charge Street Scene.
SPD Writes Car Of The Week: Week 80 - Lotus 3-Eleven


It was back in Week 14 I brought the car out to a run up the volcano. Now it's time for it to head down and get onto the limelight.

There has been quite a collection of Lotus based cars we've nominated in the game. Either Lotus tuned or collaborated. But not one badged a Lotus. That changes today with one of their famed race bred track stars coming on.

With a limited 3 year run from 2015, the limited to 311 models produced Lotus 3-Eleven was made for two things: succeed the 2-Eleven, and prove more expensive top end performance cars don't always have the biggest say in lap time.

What you pay for isn't so difficult to figure out. You got an open top, based on their experience developing Exige and Evora body types. Six speed manual, either traditional or sequential. And in it is the same Toyota sourced 3.5 liter V6, backed by a roots supercharger used in most performant Lotuses, from the Evora to the Emira. This is the same V6 in the top performing trim of one Alphard, by the way.

But this V6 produces 410 horsepower with 308 foot pounds of torque bringing a 950 kilogram body. And of course there's downforce. Lots of it for a road car. This does mean it's going to be quick. How quick? We're at the same PI range as a base Aventador and Huracan, so that's quite quick.

Short? Yeah. New cars usually do that when their history is just riddled with facts.

Something made light and simple translates to 839 PI: just out of early S1. Against other nearby Track Toys, the Lotus just shies behind the likes of the ZBII Viper ACR, and the 2020 NISMO GT-R. It's an in class lightweight, but this is a class full of them, notably more suitably named ones that include past COTW nominees in the Supervan 3, the Forza Edition Vocho and the VUHL 05RR. With a price tag of 150,000 credits off the Autoshow, feel free to grab one there or see if the Auction House can get you a better deal.


Not having a roof does mean we're going to be exposed to this week's forces of nature, specifically the humid stenches of Wetland Charge.


But of course, bringing the MINI around tracks like these makes me feel wet too. Okay, enough innuendo.

"A high-speed chase along the best roads in Mexico's jungle and swamp regions, you'll want to tune your aerodynamics to take these sweeping turns flat out."

High speed with a track car? Yup, it's another one of those weeks. A jungle sprint filled with fast sweeping turns, only carrying a small handful of tight corners. It's speedy, and since I did bring this car one time on to the in game volcano climb, I have a good feeling about this.


Good feeling? Oh yeah! I have very high hopes for this car, because it did contend with a Mark of Zen worthy car and had a very similar outcome.

- Again with last week's interior nag, the British based Lotus we got is yet another left hand drive model. I thought to myself that this is real? Anyways, it's a car that has nothing but a display to tell us what's what. Akin to most high performance vehicles in game, it also has shift lights, but the more I drive it in first person, the more I realize it wants you to shift just as it hits the redzone. And speaking of lights, the other road car elements on the side are quite dark. I'd appreciate if there's a lightbulb somewhere down here.

- The 3-Eleven thrives in the game's new launch control feature, giving it quite a super car worthy boost from nil, so that's definitely staying on here. Redlining at 8000 RPM, I find myself shifting as late as possible, at around the 7800 RPM range, mainly because I looked at the fairly straight forward powerband. Though, on later gears, the acceleration tends to get heavier the higher it gets, so I shift earlier.

- The car comes in stock with a handful of adjustable parts, such as the suspension and the downforce. One of those parts that isn't so fortunate are the brakes, but lucky for you, the car's brakes are excellent. I shouldn't be surprised, actually. It's rear biased, but you'll have to force that to tell it is.

- This is the first nominated Lotus, and you shouldn't be surprised handling is what this brand's known for. Of course this is excellent, and also quite responsive. Do be wary that this responsiveness is going to get some people taken to the shadow realm. Also like most of these great handling cars, the Lotus will lose pace if you put the angle at the end. This is a powerful car, so that's more of a minor setback.

- By the way, in the middle of a turn, don't accelerate. It'll net you some nasty understeer, in thanks part to its stiffer deceleration on the diff. What you would be doing is get the angle right, then put in the power. Also this car has a small issue in engine braking, but the drive's too stable for you to find out unless like the brakes you force it.

- I can't find faults in the car's gearing, until you look in the tuning sheets and see 5th is longer than 4th. Unusual. But on the whole, while it does feel a little tall for a car focused with on track action, there's very little I find issue with the gears. I also can't find a similar issue on power unless you're putting it down from a low rev or from the grass. Traction is strong, but not for those whose inputs lie purely at either 0 or 100.

- You're going to want to be careful going on the grass with the 3-Eleven as its grip there is noticably poor. And if you're the kind of weirdo that turns these things into cross country runners, its current stock setup is just way too stiff to manage any sort of elevation bumps, as I've noticed taking the turns at the 66% mark.

- Track advice? They weren't lying when they said you better have a tuned aero. Most parts of the track have the car get around with little to no braking required, making for a very fun and fast experience.

- Around the 25% mark is 2 things: a tree that'll catch anyone taking an outside line, and the track's first slow corner. Taking this corner requires a special touch that involves not being too wide, obviously. And also that first slow corner isn't that slow a corner, with my attempts usually taking the Lotus around at the 100 MPH area.

- Later in the 75%, you'll find a roundabout. Now, usually, there are 2 ways these are taken: smash on, or taking the first exit the right way. You'd want to do the latter as it's not a tight roundabout, and the light weight means you're getting punished for smashing the barricades.

- Here's a note to end with: confidence. With the 3-Eleven, you'd want to be confident in what you're going to execute with the car. In depth knowledge of the car and track will do you wonders. With the racing line on, the car can surprise you by being able to take the turns just as the line yells red. There's probably one part of the track's speed zones that got me braking, but aside that, it's a breeze to your hair.. someone in that other universe probably is having a fit of rage about now..

If anything else I should note, this car has one of the biggest sound improvements in between Horizons 4 and 5. And I knew it since I made that Showcase in Week 14, but the Lotus 3-Eleven and this... umm, charge, gets a very easy Mark of Zen, holding the 21st award. Handling cars can do wonders on speed tracks, because what good is a speed car if opposing handling car does 10 MPH more on the corners.. something I found out with an hour in sheer satisfaction.


A few simple runs and my best with the 3-Eleven goes to something like a 2:34.308.

I'm not feeling too well this past weekend, so I'm unsure if I can set a base to achieve. And after my session's done, I look back a bit and say.. I can definitely cut a second off this one, but I don't think cutting away my recovery time is going to be worth it.


Nothing this week. I'm still reeling in from sickness. Memories flow back of me getting such an amazing drive with the Corrado when I had COVID that time, or even sort of prime me with the Cortina last week. If I was a complete SomePlayaDick, I'd say you're lucky you get one from me this week.


What is the Lotus 3-Eleven? It is..

We're on a roll with nominating street legal track cars, are we?

No nonsense Lotus offers another Sleeper. It's a fast car that reveals character. Like that car on the other universe. Umm..

And after all that time driving it in first person, I think I need some rest. And some scapegoats to blame. Umm.. Cathedral Circuit, Nirvana Kellen, and of course Week 34..


There's going to be a new Photo Mode update for next week, but my excitement sort of fades, mainly due to how I don't see a hint if it's for more cars from your garage. Because this is not how I treat my man killer Porsches.

So the Lotus 3-Eleven, the follow up act to the 2-Eleven, but turned up a few notches.

As mentioned by SPD, COTW as a whole in the last week has taken a shine to lightweight, street legal track toys from my neck of the woods.

The 3-Eleven was limited to 311 cars (see what they did there? :sly:) which compared to the 2-Eleven appears to be slightly less exclusive as approximately 300 or so 2-Eleven’s were built, nothing concrete though.

The 3-Eleven uses the same 3.5 Supercharged Toyota V6 as the Evora S, but this one’s tweaked to make 410hp and 308ft-lbs of torque and making quite the sound in the process. :drool:

Drop that engine into a car weighing just over 950kgs, hooked up to a 6 speed paddle shift sequential gearbox which drives the rear tyres, throw on a decent aero package and boom, you have a 3-Eleven ready to raise hell on the track. :cool:

There is a limit to the grip at high speed, but you’ll need to be actively trying too hard to reach it, like trying to stay flat through the 1st part of the track. :P

But otherwise, aside from a straight line deficit compared to similar PI machines, it does everything a track toy needs to do, acceleration, high grip levels, strong brakes and still be approachable and easy to drive quickly.

It costs 150K in the Autoshow, but you CAN swipe one off Auction for under 20k, making it a serious performance bargain. 🤑

Sure in reality, having no roof and something vaguely resembling a windscreen will limit your ability to daily drive such a car(unless you’re a masochist. :lol:), but in Horizon Mexico, such problems aren’t an issue.:D

Verdict: Sleeper 😉👍
Hey folks. Two things:

1) I will be bringing this thread to an end on Week 104. As of this post, it's Week 81. It's been a long run, and an amazing one at that, but I don't think I have it in me to go past two years.

Today's Car of the Week is the 2001 Acura Integra Type R! This is our first look at an Acura, if I remember right. We'll be taking it around Estadio Circuit. Does the classic Teg still hold up like our local favorite the Corrado, or has it fallen by the wayside?


That time for that track in C Class would’ve been good for 156th place out of 128,435 posted times. :eek:

The only reason it’s not on the board is because of a faster time I’d set in the past of a 1:11.438 in a C600 CRX. :P

The Acura version of the Honda Integra Type R packs a 1.8 B18C Inline 4 VTEC which makes 195hp at around 8000rpm and revs out to the fuel cut off just past 9000rpm.

That power is sent to the front tyres via 5 speed close ratio manual gearbox, which helps pull the 2639lbs of Integra along with in game stats quoting a 0-60 of 6.2 seconds and a top speed of 155.5 mph.

Now that 5 speed might not be as close ratioed in game as in IRL, but it’s close enough to help keep the engine in the high rpms where it’s most effective.

The handling is the make or break part for the Integra as Honda’s version is considered to be one of, if not the best handling FF performance cars ever built.

While it’s likely a tad softer than Honda’s version, it’s still very responsive and agile, I mean that lap time kinda tells the tale on that one. :lol:

For 25k or less, you can be assured it’s quite the bargain for a capable, factory fresh front wheel drive machine.

Verdict: Sleeper 😉👍

The Aston Martin Valhalla, specifically the Concept version.

Originally nicknamed the “Son Of Valkyrie” as it would serve as the less expensive, but still mad version of the V12 Valkyrie in Aston’s line up.

Well when I say ‘would’ serve, I actually mean will/maybe serve as the production version isn’t out yet at the time of writing this piece, but is expected to be so in the latter part of 2023.

Couple things will be different on the production version compared this Concept version we have, quite a few styling/ aerodynamic tweaks( The Valhalla’s aerodynamics were influenced by RBR’s Adrian Newey, just like with the Valkyrie.), but the biggest change is to the engine.

It’ll still be a turbo hybrid combo, but with a 4.0 TT V8 by Mercedes AMG instead of the in-house built, 3.0 Turbo V6 we have in game.

It won’t be as potent as the V6, but you won’t be complaining about a quoted 937hp now will ya? :P

The Concept version is quoted at 986hp, but ours is sliding in at 1042hp and 995ft-lbs of torque with a redline north of 10,000rpm, sending power to all 4 wheels via a 7 speed gearbox(an 8 speed gearbox is reportedly what the production car will get.).

Handling is about on par with what you expect from a car with Newey’s take on aerodynamics, a lot of downforce made from underneath the car via the huge rear diffuser means it’s quite planted at high speeds, with an active wing on the back to keep things stable topside. :sly:

At 1.15 million, it’s only beaten in its class on value by 2 cars(5 if you consider the CC8S and the 2 Aventador’s in S1, but they are so far behind on PI it’s to be expected.:D) and they are the McLaren Senna and the 918 Spyder at 1 mill and 850k respectively.

You could snipe one at auction for less, but good luck trying to get a real cheap one. ;)

All in all, a solid car that’ll eventually get phased out for the production version in future Forza games, just like the Urus Concept. :irked:

Verdict: Sleeper 😉👍
We go from cutting edge speed to the beginnings this week as we take the Bugatti Type 35 C around the Bola Ocho Circuit.

I wanted to capture the essence of older GPs without resorting to cathedral circuit, haha...