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Podcast

The best cars in racing games – The Traxion Podcast, episode three

This is going to sting a little. But it’s okay, only for 45 minutes or so.

You see, in the latest episode of the Traxion podcast, we discuss what we think are the best cars in games. We know, it’s contentious and you definitely disagree with us.

This is why we put a little twist on proceeding. So, we each get to pick what we think is the best car in gaming, and then which cars we think are underrated, finally, we pick three that we think are OP.

We’d love to hear your thoughts, and we know you’d love to tell us them, so please, contact us via social media.

The Traxion Podcast is available on all major podcast outlets. Simply search “Traxion Podcast” on your favourite podcast service and subscribe to get instant notifications when the latest episode releases.

Hosted by Justin Sutton, John Munro and Thomas Harrison-Lord.

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The Traxion Podcast episode three, full transcript

Here’s the automated transcript, it’s all its random glory.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Hello and welcome to the latest episode of the Traxion podcast, where we discuss, recent games of all types for all skillsets. Today, we’re going to be talking about the best cars in racing games. So joining us today is someone who once lead and actual motor race, real life and sim races with Jenson button. It’s John Munro.

John Munro:

It’s the best introduction I’ve ever heard. And I’m sure the lead didn’t last long.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

And also joined us today as someone who owns a Volvo, it’s Justin Sutton.

Justin Sutton:

Thank you. Happy to be here and happy to own my Volvo.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, no worries. So what we’re going to do today is talk about what we think are the best cars in racing games. So that’s quite a broad topic. So we’re going to break it down a little bit. So we’re each gonna go across three selections. One is our sort of current favorite car in a video game from recent times. Another one is one that we think is a bit underrated that flies under the radar a little bit. And one is a car that’s overpowered in the game OP. And then maybe at the end, we might talk about our favorite retro racing car as well. So without further ado, I think John it would be really good. If you could tell me which car you really love in a racing game and why, and then me and Justin will probably disagree with you.

John Munro:

Thank you, Tom. That sounds like a perfect afternoon for me.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

No worries.

John Munro:

I’m kind of, I get the feeling that we’re all going to be covering slightly different genres in this, but I mean, we obviously we don’t know each others, right? I’m very intrigued to see what you guys…

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Any genre within a racing game, if it’s a vehicle, it counts.

John Munro:

Exactly. So, so as you can imagine, I’ve kind of gone more down my own route, which is slightly more towards the sim kind of stuff and what cars I really enjoy driving with my wheel. And feel like I’ve really got the most out off. And for me, I’ve gone with the Porsche 911 GT1 on Assetto Corsa. Now I appreciate, that’s a very, very specific maybe sounds a bit like, Oh, car nerds and you know, but I’ll tell you what, it’s just as a car to drive and as an experience, for me, it tops anything because it’s tricky. It’s hard to keep on the road. It’s loud, it’s exciting. It’s got a bunch of power and it’s, as I say, yeah, it’s a very niche kind of thing, but any kind of late nineties GT car for me is just such a good driving experience.

John Munro:

And I’ve got to say that. I’m not sure if you guys will have much experience of driving this car, but for me, every time I jumped at it on Assetto Corsa, I just don’t want to get again. I just want to pound round no matter what track. It doesn’t matter if I’m racing AI, on my own. It’s just such a visceral experience that kind of gives you a little glimpse into the adrenaline you might get from real life. So for me, that’s my current racing game car of the anything.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Interesting. Well, I’ll give you eight out of 10 for you’re justification there, but could I just clarify what, which Porsche is? Did you say GT1? Was it in the strassenversion? the road version? Or the track version?

John Munro:

For me, the late nineties GT racing Le Mans and endurance races, GT1 was the thing. And for me, I think not nothing’s been replicated quite like that since because you had cars that were based on kind of road going cars, they weren’t kind of spaceship like types. And it was kinda like group B of rallying where, you know, you had, these cars were very open to interpretation. You could put any engine in them, you could give them character, they all look different. Some of them looked to prototype piece. Some of them looked like, you know, a box. Um, and I feel like manufacturers could do whatever they wanted with them. And it gave the car so much character. And I feel like for me, that year of motorsport and GT1’sin general, such a good class. So the Porsche is one of the best examples of it. And the version on Assetto Corsa is a fantastic example of a fantastic car.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

That’s also in Automobilista 2 as well. Isn’t it? But yeah, Justin?

Justin Sutton:

Is that rear wheel? Rear engine?

John Munro:

Yeah. The the engine, I think it might be a mid engine, you know?

Tom Harrison-Lord:

We don’t know.

John Munro:

Yeah. Like this is one of my favorite cars of all time. And it’s interesting that I don’t know that, but I think because of the nature of GT1 is the manufacturers could do whatever they want. Right. So you had the front engine Panoz, which is also an awesome car. If you’ve raced on like Project Cars 2, the, the Panoz is amazing to drive. But there was obviously every different manufacturer had a different way of going about it, and that’s what made it so cool. And Porsche, took the Porsche 911, and they made a car that doesn’t really look anything like a Porsche 911, but it just is such an awesomely exciting car. And it’s so lively. It’s so raw. And as an experience to drive, I mean, it’s a pain in the butt. Don’t get me wrong, but it’s, once you get the hang of it a little bit, and you really start nailing it round somewhere random like the Nordschleife, which you obviously couldn’t do in real life. It’s a amazing experience.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

My question, I was going to ask you, what is your favorite track in a set of Assetto Corsa to take that car to, is it the Nordschleife?

John Munro:

Well, I mean, that’s a boring answer, but I do really enjoy it. I mean, I used to when Assetto Corsa first came out. It was, it kind of go through all the different cars in the game and just drive them around Nordschleife and see how much I enjoyed them. And with, with the GT1, I could just lap round there for days. It really, really good to somewhere like Laguna Seca as well. And Oulton Park, I think full Oulton Park is a really good place anywhere. That’s quite a lot of undulation, a lot of character and when, when you drive a GT1 car and it’s the same applies to like the McLaren F1 and stuff, when you’re right on the limit and, you know, you’ve done a good lap, it’s one of the most satisfying sim racing experiences you can have.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah. It’s such a, it’s a golden era of cars, especially cause they had to make some road going variants to make it homologated for the track, which was really weird. So yes, I’ve just looked it up with my mate, Google’s helped me, out and its rear-mid engine. So it’s technically a mid engine Porsche 911 when they’re all rear engine. So that’s, that’s interesting. So yeah, we got away with it- ish, but let’s see what Justin’s chosen and before you do, I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest that is it from Forza Horizon?

Justin Sutton:

It’s not, it’s actually not.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Oh my word! It’s not!

Justin Sutton:

Weirdly. It’s from Assetto Corsa.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Interesting, good.

Justin Sutton:

Somehow, we have picked the same again, just for the listeners. We did not talk about our selections ahead of time.

John Munro:

Before you go on Justin, can just say that, that’s a lot of praise for, Asssetto Corsa right there, because I mean, first of all, same game as an ultimate car, it means that it must be doing something right with the car.

Justin Sutton:

It is. And, uh, the car that I’ve chosen is, it’s not like a mod or anything like that. It actually came from Kronos. And it is actually the Lotus Exige 240R, specifically the 240R because there are several versions of the Exige in, is there one with the big, and I think it’s got a splitter as well, 240R version. So it’s quite, down forcey compared to the traditional Exige;s and stuff like that. But it’s just very pointy without being, too oversteery which is what I absolutely love about that car. The responsiveness of the front end on it is just something that I just absolutely love and weirdly in like Forza Horizon, cause obviously everyone knows at this point that I love Forza Horizon. But I love all wheel drive cars, but for some reason, in, Assetto Corsa, it’s just that there’s something about the grip level and like the, distribution of the Exige 240R in Assetto Corsa, of where it almost has similar qualities to all wheel drive cars, but without some of the downsides and stuff.

Justin Sutton:

And weirdly for me, my favorite thing to do in that car is to drive it on Nordschleife. And I’ve recommended that car and track combination in Assetto Corsa to people that have recently bought Assetto Corsa like multiple times, I’m like, Oh, you just bought Assetto Corsa? Take the Exige 240R on the Nordschleife.

John Munro:

What we need now is for Tom, to pick like a Fiat 500 from Assetto Corsa. And then, we can have our own driver training program.

John Munro:

By the way Justin, I think that’s a super pick. I think that car was one of the standard road cars for me. And because it was such a nice balance in quick and nippy and agile, and you had a lot of control over it, but it felt so much like you were driving the car rather than the car was driving you. Right? It was almost like a Caterham, without some of the rawness, but with just so much more chuck-ability and it was good fun. And I personally obviously love that pick. I should also clarify, if you guys at home want to try the Porsche GT1 it is available as an official DLC pack, so it doesn’t come with the base game, but it is official content. So you guys can get yourselves hold of the Porsche car pack. I’m not sure which number is, but, if you do want to try that, make sure you can do that as well.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

And this is Assetto Corsa, not Assetto Corsa Competizione.

John Munro:

Correct.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

The first one, which has got road cars in it and a lot more variety of the vehicles. Right?

Justin Sutton:

Yeah.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Interesting how that game has a lot of Lotus cars in there. Whereas many other games don’t, I think there’s some licensing thing where they had a load of them in there before Lotus just sort of went exclusive to some games. So there’s like, well, over 10, 15 Lotus cars in the first Assetto Corsa.

John Munro:

Every variation. So you had all the sizes, all the different aerodynamic packages, it was brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

Justin Sutton:

There’s like stages as well. There’s like a stage one 240R and like a stage three 240R and like there’s so many it’s insane, but yeah,

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Do you have a favourite stage?

Justin Sutton:

Just the bog standard 240 R. Yeah, I think I tried like the stage three or whatever it was and it was too much power, too lairy. What I liked about the 240R was you could go quite, you could go full throttle. You know, it was quite easy in that regard, you could go full throttle at quarter exit and not worry too much about the rear spinning up. I think part of that is super sticky tires as well, though. Quite sticky tires that came on that car. So, you know, the grip levels are quite high. The power level is just high enough, again, to be exciting, but not to spin up the rear as a corner exit too easily. So, yeah, it just had that great balance for me personally.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. Yeah. I think a Lotus isn’t about outright power or speed, is it it’s about that balance and finesse where you have a good amount of power to be quick enough fun, but it’s really about also precision and the handling and the balance. So that’s probably why the stage two and three doesn’t do it for you as much.

John Munro:

Yeah. Sorry. They’re actually really, I’ve driven a couple in real life. Race prepared ones.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Oh, la di da!

John Munro:

Slide die in there. I drove a couple of different ones at Silverstone and the wet, which was, the thing that got me was just how raw that car was to drive in real life. You felt like you were on the ground. And it was a lot, there was a lot of shaking, you know, it felt like it was a very, the, the cockpit was very alive. You know, I felt like it was always two inches away from the ground and you could hear everything so loudly, but the thing that gets me, most of driving a Lotus in real life is high pointy is, but also how quickly it can go wrong, the way the weight transfers in the water. It’s so easy to spin a Lotus on a damp track because of the weight distribution. And I think Assetto Corsa does an amazing job of simulating that and giving you that kind of alive feeling and the balance that you would get in real life. I think honestly, it’s a fantastic, it’s a fantastic version of that car.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

When you said easy to go wrong. I thought you meant like the reliability of the car, you know, breaking down doesn’t it stand for Lots Of Trouble Usually Serious?

Justin Sutton:

Yeah.

John Munro:

My race team that I’ve been with in endurance, one of our cars was a Lotus. And as you can imagine, our Mazda, finished every race of the year that the Lotus was going and it just didn’t finish many, put it that way. It caught fire alot.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

But they’re look good cars though. It caught fire.

Justin Sutton:

They are rare over here too, by the way. You don’t see Lotus’ very often in America. And every once in a while I get to see one and it’s like a real treat, you know, like, I remember as a kid I saw an Esprit V8 Turbo or whatever at a Taco Bell one time and I just lost it. I was like, Oh my God!

John Munro:

Gran Turismo 4 car that, they’re brilliant. Brilliant Gran Turismo 4.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

I mean, you don’t really, even though we live in Britain, you know, they’re not on every street corner either, so it’s still an event.

Justin Sutton:

I assumed they were like Corvettes. Cause I see Corvettes everywhere. So I assumed, a Lotus is like our version of Corvettes.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Oh, that’s much more practical. So you can use it as a daily.

Justin Sutton:

True

John Munro:

I think the Lotus is hugely popular as well in, like British club racing because there’s a big David versus Goliath. So you have Lotuses, which are lightweight low power, but faster than in coroners against big, you know, BMW M3’s and stuff like that, that will be quicker on the straight, slower in the corner. So you do, I see them a lot around the country, but less, so much on the road.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. All right. Well that’s two good contenders, both from Assetto Corsa and I’m afraid mine isn’t from that game. So I’ve got an alternative route and mine is new, like new, new, new, new, new, as new as you can get. It’s also a bit weird. So without further ado, it is a Toyota Yaris, but it is the Toyota GR Yaris, which stands for GAZOO Racing, which is a very terrible name. And unfortunately Justin this car is not going to be available in the United States, but it is going to be available in Europe. And I’m very excited about it. So in essence, it’s, a Toyota Yaris hatchback, but it was made like the Porsche 911 GT1 that John discussed for homologation purposes. So in order to get their WRC car more aerodynamic, they decided to make a special three door Yaris with a tapered roof at the rear.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Unfortunately the rules have changed. And so now actually that rally car won’t ever see the light of day, which makes it, even cooler for me. Yeah. So it is a homologation road car that you can actually go out and buy, not in limited numbers and its purpose doesn’t exist anymore. But what you end up with is a four wheel drive turbocharged Yaris with a manual gearbox. It’s got a manual old school hand break that disengages a four wheel drive system. So you can do hand break turns specifically designed for that purpose. You can select the amount of power going between the front and rear wheels. The bias it’s got the most powerful 1.6 litre engine of all time. It’s got a carbon fiber roof and unlike every other Yaris, which is made in a production line in France, this is hand-finished in Japan.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

And so just the fact that that exists in this day and age before electric cars come in, it’s one final flourish. And it reminds me of the Supa Impreza’s and the Mitsubishi EVO’s that no longer exist. it’s a modern day version of those.

Justin Sutton:

Do you work for…

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, I’m on commission. I would actually really like to buy one in my life, but we’ll have to see how that, how would that work? So in the future, but it came, on the day, it was sort of allowed, to the press were allowed to talk about it in terms of reviews. At the end of last year, it came to Gran Turismo Sport on the same day and it’s just really good, fun to play. And then the rally version that will never see the light of day, is in WRC 9, which was a nice little Easter egg update that came in December. So that is my favorite car in real life. And it’s also happens to be in a couple of video games, but I understand it’s a bit niche and a bit weird, but, it’s really good, fun to drive. There you go.

John Munro:

I’ll start off. I absolutely love, I love the idea of the Yaris because, for me, it’s so much better when you take a car that shouldn’t be something crazy, something like a hatchback, it’s something that you don’t expect and then turn it into a… a good example for me was always the Fiat 500 Abarth. I thought that was one of the coolest cars ever when the road version came out because it’s like, it reminds me of like a little angry terrier. That’s just barking, like mad and thinks, thinks it’s an, it thinks it’s a monster things that could take down all these Labradors, but really it’s just a little plucky shouty thing and anyone could pick up. And I feel like that’s what a lot of these kinds of all hatches do. And when you get something like a homologation special, that’s going to be so rare. It’s going to, you know, the performance figures are staggering, the build quality staggering ,Toyota obviously, or possibly I think the are the biggest car manufacturer in the world. So they’ve got a lot of resources. Yeah.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

I can’t see how they’re make any profit on this either. Which makes it even better.

John Munro:

Exactly. And the fact that this is no longer happening because the real change makes it even better. I agree. And this is maybe a bit of a sad reason that, you know, to be, to like something, because it’s exclusive is a little bit pathetic, but yeah, it’s really cool.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah. And.

Justin Sutton:

I just really, really want it in America desperately. Yeah. I would buy one if I could. And in fact, I know for a fact GranTurismo commentator, Tom Brooks has bought one. If I’m not mistaken.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. Yeah.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah, I am ultra jealous about that. I have signed the, oh, what is it called? The thing to the petition to bring the GR Yaris to America. I have signed that I’ve gone to this website where, and they have a website specifically set up that says the Gazoo Racing Yaris, is not coming to North America, but give us your email and we’ll let you know if anything happens in the future.

Justin Sutton:

Right. But I would buy that car in a heartbeat. It is. I think, I think you’re right. I think it’s right at the end of a, of an era of a hundred years. Exactly, exactly. And I think not only is it incredible car, I think it’ll be worth twice. What it costs about 10 years. It will be worried and incredible amount of money. Yeah. Oh, that’s cool. It’s a shame that you’re not going to get it in America, Justin and your import laws are really weird. So you can’t import it until it’s 25 years old, I think.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

But you know, in the future you might be able to…

Justin Sutton:

I will be 60!

Tom Harrison-Lord:

…however America get’s the new Nissan Z and the Subaru GRZ that we don’t get. So, you know,

Justin Sutton:

Wait, you don’t?

Tom Harrison-Lord:

We’re not going to get those anymore. We do get the current one, but the new one, we’re not going to get any more because of emissions regulations and stuff.

Justin Sutton:

Yep. Gotcha.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Right. Well, moving on because I think we’ve talked a lot about our favorite games, favorite cars in games, quite a lot. Let’s talk about ones that are a bit underrated that you might not think are good in the game, but are so over to you, John what’s your pick?

John Munro:

Thank you. So I’m kind of sticking to my guns and going with what I know and kind of my experience. And I think it kind of stems, the car, the reason the car is maybe underrated is kind of stems from the fact that this game is not so popular in a lot of aspects. And that is the it’s from the Project Car series. Now I have a soft spot for Project Cars because I feel like it actually does hit a really nice compromise market of people that want to get into sim racing and want the diversity, that’s sim racing brings, that’s not just Formula 1, but actually is accessible to people that aren’t as experienced because it is a bit easier to get the hang off. Although on the limits, it can be very weird and the curbs feel like sheet ice. So I feel like Project Cars was kind of misread.

John Munro:

And I think mis-marketed is probably more of the better way of describing. I think they, they tried to aim for the wrong target market when actually it works really nice to compromise either way. Within Project Cars 2, this is when I first discovered this, there was a DLC pack that was released and which was celebrating Japanese classics. And in that DLC pack, there was a Nissan Skyline, I believe R32 or R34 group A touring car. So the one from the very early nineties, the…

Tom Harrison-Lord:

R32.

John Munro:

Yeah. So if you’ve seen the video of the Bathurst race with the Skyline, the wall race, all that kind of stuff. Yeah, definitely go watch that.

John Munro:

Go on YouTube, Jim Richards Bathurst you’ll find it all anyway. That car was released as a DLC for Project Cars 2. So it slipped it under the radar and oh my goodness, I played it with the direct drive wheel and VR. And I absolutely fell in love with this. And of course, Project Cars, not necessarily the best physics, but with the direct drive wheel and this car, I honestly felt it was similar to what I said before, but it felt so alive. And I felt like I was driving the car, it had four wheel drive, which made it standout from the other group A touring cars, but you could absolutely drive it on the backend four wheel slide and round all the corners. And I would stick on a race round Sugo or, or even the Nordschleife. And I could just sit there for days and days driving this car. It was so fun on the limit of grip. And it made you feel like a better driver because the car was so easy to drive. It made you feel like you were doing something good, but actually it was just the car being good. So for me, the reason it’s underrated is not necessarily because, many people talk about it. It’s more because I think it’s within a game that’s maybe overlooked. A wee bit interms of enjoying the experiences and this is an incredibly good experience. If you can find it.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

That’s a good way of thinking about actually this in an underrated game and does DLC. So therefore not many people have experienced it, including myself. I wish, I think I have the DLC, but I’ve not tried that car yet.

John Munro:

I wouldn’t describe the game and actually underrated more that kind of misunderstood and mis marketed. I just think that you don’t go in Project Cars expecting the best ultimate driving experience and there is a hidden gem in there. If you have the right DLC, there’s some other cars in the DLC that are absolutely awful. I should also point out that the ones that you would do concept cars and they drive, like, I can’t see the words in the podcast, but the group A Skyline is absolutely sensational.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Oh, nice. And what about your choice Justin, is it another R32 Skyline or is it something different?

Justin Sutton:

No, thankfully, yeah, there’s no similarities between John’s pick and mine this time. In fact, I’m going to be the first person to pick a car from iRacing weirdly. I don’t have a ton of experience in iRacing, but I do have some, I’ve done some league racing in iRacing. I tended to do more league racing rather than just jumping into the sessions. I never cared much about high rating and the safety rating and all that kind of stuff. But the car that I enjoyed the most, which got raced very, very little was the Mustang.And I don’t know, I don’t know if there’s been a new one introduced, but it’s the FR500 S and I was driving this, this was years ago when I would have been driving it like six years ago, something like that.

Justin Sutton:

So yeah, this is not a new car by any means, but I think that means it’s quite cheap on iRacing. It might be one of those ones that you can pick up for five bucks, or maybe it’s, maybe it’s even free at this point. I actually don’t know. Right. Go, go check out iRacing if you guys, have the time and to see if it’s include. It’s one of the few cars that I found and, you know, things change in terms of like the tyre model and stuff like that from iRacing. So I don’t know if this is still consistent today, but when I was driving that Mustang FR500 S, it was one of the few cars in iRacing where you could let the backend step out a little bit and you could actually control it.

Justin Sutton:

You could counter steer and survive, come out the other end. Iracing’s oversteer historically anyway, cause I haven’t played it recently. Historically is quite snappy, the end goes and it’s gone. You’re not catching it. I don’t care how fast your reaction times are. I don’t care if you have a direct drive wheel, you’re not catching anything. It’s over, you’re in a wall, you’re done. The Mustang was one of the few cars that I found that I could actually let the backend, you could enter a corner with a bit of a bit of oversteer. You could correct it. You could come out the other side. And I think it’s a car that a lot of people don’t even think about it. It’s also not super fast. Mustangs, aren’t fast. You guys know that Mustang’s aren’t super fast cars, all ready.

Justin Sutton:

Exactly. I mean, I would be very interested to compare lap times between the FR 500 S and the MX5, for example, I don’t think the lap times would be that massively different. Speaking of David and Goliath, sort of motor racing, there’s another great example. But the Mustang, I think is one of those cars, especially cause Iracing gets so focused on the modern fast stuff. You know, like the F1 cars, the Indy cars, the NASCAR cup series cars, the GT3 cars, the LMP cars, right? These are like the bread and butter of people that play iRacing, that do iRacing. You see a lot fewer people getting into the kind of weird, like they have the Lotus 49, the Lotus 79. They have all sorts of really weird cars in iRacing that just never get used anymore by anyone.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, that’s a shame.

John Munro:

The solstice. Yeah. They have the solstice in there too. There’s just a bunch of really, really weird cars. And I think the Mustang is sort of like the best of those because it’s just easy to drive. And I think people focus too much on a challenge. You know what I mean? They’re like, Oh, I want to have a challenge. I want to be fighting the car and, you know, have that sense of accomplishment when you can string together a lap. I don’t want that. I just want to go out there and drive around, you know, i’m not gonna put in three hours just to make sure that the setup is good enough, that I’m not going to fall off the course. So the Mustang was one of those cars. You could go in with the default setup. You could let the back end out a little bit and you may not be competitive, but you’re going to get around and you’re not going to crash. And I think, I think more people should really experience the Mustang, especially if it is free again, I don’t know if it is.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

I’ll definitely add it to my list.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah. Nice. Oh, that sounds good. You’ve sold it to me. So we’ve got so far then a Mustang in iRacing and we’ve got a classic nineties group A touring car Skyline from Project Cars 2 DLC, which is very obscure choice. Is it available in Project Cars 3 did you say, sorry?

John Munro:

It is, yeah. But play on Project Cars 2.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, that’s a whole other podcast. All right. So my underrated car is a slightly obscure Japanese sports car, not from a company you might be thinking of. So John’s mentioned a Nissan Skyline GTR. This isn’t that, but imagine a Skyline GTR and R34, in particular that was mid engined. And what you actually get is what’s called a Tommykaira ZZ 2 now this is in Gran Turismo 3, 4, 5 and 6. And it was only a concept car from a manufacturer, small Japanese manufacturer called Tommykaira. And they only made one. And unfortunately the project didn’t get enough funding and they never made the production version, as kind of a theme of my car so far, that kind of weird obscure curios, but this is a sports car. It looks really nice, but it’s got the Nissan mechanicals in a mid engine form and tuned to 500 horsepower to start with. And then you can tune it up from there. So you’ve got more headroom from a tuning point of view, but because it’s got the four wheel drive and the mid engine balance, it handled beautifully. So handling is really important for me. And that was just a really enjoyable car, but it’s often overlooked. It doesn’t exist in modern games anymore, unfortunately, but it’s a great one to do many events in Gran Turismo with, and I highly recommend it. The Tommykaira ZZ 2. Anyone heard of it?

John Munro:

Nice.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah. I remember driving it.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Oh, nice.

John Munro:

Like for me, it’s actually really nice too. Cause I, I remember driving the car and I knew it as a Gran Turismo car. You know, the one of those ones where I don’t know of it other than out of GranTurismo, but I didn’t know about the Nissan link and you’ve educated me. So thanks.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

I think the plan was to make their own engine and do their own thing. But the one version that they made had the R34 engine from the Skyline and it never progressed from that. So that’s what it has in the game. And that’s how the project ended. Unfortunately. Nice. I’m glad other people have heard of it though. That’s good. So…

Justin Sutton:

I definitely remember using it.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Good. Yeah. Nice.

John Munro:

I think it’s ugly personally though, that’s the only thing. I don’t think it’s that pretty.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Ah well. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. John and looks appeal is objective. There we go. We’ll just leave that at that. So we’ve had our current sort of favorite cars. We’ve had ones that are sort of underrated, but we still love from if you’ve heard our, picthes for those, and now we’re going to go for something that’s a bit overpowered, something we really like, but sort of dominated the game. So let’s go, John, again, what’s your pick for this category?

John Munro:

I mean, I would want to go down the route of Mercedes W11 in 2020, did the Mercedes W10 in 2019, et cetera, all the way back to 2014, but. So I am going to instead go with the mighty Battle Bus from Wreckfest. The reason it’s overpowered is because we have played enough games of WreckFest with enough people to know that if you see a Battle Bus, you might as well cry and start reversing because there’s just nothing that you can do about it. It’s front bucket alone is the most overpowered object ever been created for video game use and I hate, I have nightmares of that Battle Bus heading towards me into car and yeah, there’s, it’s, it’s ridiculous. And it takes so long to get in the game that anyone who has it has got an unfair advantage. And can you tell this is really hits a personal spot with me. I’m going to stop there.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

But often. It has to be said driven the wrong way around the track as well. For me, I don’t mind when I see someone in it, it adds an extra level of challenge to the race, but I see where your coming from, it’s very frustrating when you’re leading something and then the last second someone’s going the wrong way in a battle bus. And it’s like, Oh no, I can see where this is going.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

That’s what makes Wreckfest so special though. So…

John Munro:

I mean, I love the Battle Bus. I have a love, hate relationship with it. You know, the question was whether it was overpowered. And I mean, to me it feels overpowered because I’ve never had the pleasure of driving one. So maybe I’m just petty, but it feels very strong.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

It’s like the Marmite of vehicles of video games. I like it. Nice.

John Munro:

It’s like the Marmite but I love Marmite and I don’t like Battle Buses crashing into me.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

A lot of people don’t like it. So a lot of people.

John Munro:

I’m actually also allergic, I’ve become allergic to Marmite. So I love it, but I’m allergic to it. So it’s like a Marmite example within Marmite. We’re getting really deep here.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Prehaps moving away from Marmite, Justin do you even know what that is?

Justin Sutton:

Yes. I’ve heard of Marmite. I have not tasted I’m a very picky eater. I don’t like many things.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

We’ll have to post it to you.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah. Maybe we’ll see. My op car and I actually had a hard time thinking about this one, especially cause I was trying to think of something in a more recent game and I think games more recently have done a better job of balancing their cars, for example, I nearly put this, this isn’t my selection, but this is a close second. In F1 2012, the Sauber was better online than the rest of the cars, even if you had equal cars. Yeah. Even if you had equal cars on, there was just something about the Sauber online that was just made it a little bit quicker. And I remember I was racing in a league at the time and depending on your like seed, you’re qualifying to get into the league would determine your choice of car.

Justin Sutton:

And I just missed out on having first choice of car. So I got second choice of car and I ended up picking the Lotus, I wanted the Sauber desperately of course, as a Sergio Perez fan. So I really, really, really, really wanted that car. But I ended up with the Lotus, which was a beautiful car in F1 2012. Yeah, exactly gorgeous livery. I love the black and red and gold. I think it’s absolutely iconic. So moving on from that, I actually ended up choosing in Forza Horizon 4, the first and only car that I’m choosing Horizon 4, there is one car that I found myself picking for a lot of events because I was thinking, you know, what car do I pick? And some people might think that I’m going to say the Jaguar D type because that car can go 280 miles an hour or whatever it is if you tune it right. But no, cause that’s only good for a top speed run, which is very rare. You don’t do a lot of top speed runs in Forza Horizon. The car that I ended up picking a lot was the 1958 Austin Healey Sprite, Mark 1.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Wow. That is weird

Justin Sutton:

Yeah. I tuned that thing into an S1 rally car, all wheel drive S1 class. So we’re talking like 600 horsepower in that tiny, tiny little body and with the all wheel drive, there’s just something about that car. Like it’s sorta similar to the Exige actually. It’s very pointy because it’s so light and the wheelbase is so short…

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, a light british sports car.

John Munro:

You can change direction really quickly in it. But then because it has no weight over the back wheels that it’s just extremely, full of power. As soon as you get on the throttle, it just, yeah, the backend steps out and you’re just sideways at a 45 degree angle for the rest of the corner. And there was just something about it where, I could take it to the drift zones, for those that are unfamiliar in the open world of Forza Horizon, you have these, these zones where you, you drift in it and depending on the speed and the angle of your drift, you accumulate more points then you have like leader leaderboards and stuff. So you can compare yourself to your friends, see who got a higher score. Almost all of my top drift runs were in that Austin Healey, almost every single one of them is that Austin Healey.

John Munro:

Did you know, Austin Healey’s as well. And even nowadays, it is obviously it’s such an old car now, but even in current motorsport, they still use Austin Healey’s and like hill climbing and sprints, I’ve competed against them on multiple occasions. They are awesom little cars, like really overlooked. Kind of like the original mini where you still see them going, they’re still competitive. And they just look like so much fun. I guess it’s like the 50’s-60’s version of a MX5.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah and I don’t know what it is about the version that’s in Forza Horizon 4, but it just, and again, especially as all wheel drive, because your tune does matter a lot in Forza, the way you, not just the way you tune the car, but the way you upgrade the car as well, whether that’s with wider tires or more horsepower, because both will increase the PI of the car. So you have to, it’s a trade-off, do you want more horsepower? Do you want more grip? That kind of stuff. So, my tune in particular may just, I may have just struck a perfect balance, which would have been completely by luck, by the way, I am not like a scientist when it comes to tuning on Horizon games or anything like that. So I would’ve lucked into this tune, but there’s just something about it.

Justin Sutton:

That’s, it’s just really easy. And you know what I mean? In fact, I’ve just realized that all three of my choices are easy to drive cars. I’ve picked three extremely easy to drive cars, the Exige, like I said, you could go full throttle at corner exit, you don’t have to worry about the back end. The Mustang, I mentioned is very forgiving when the backend goes out compared to other iRacing cars and same thing here that Austin Healey, you could just go full throttle sideways through a corner. And it’ll it just kind of magically grips. And I don’t know, it’s, it’s one of those cars with that. You’re steering it with the throttle as well too, which I love, I love that about that car.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah, I love that as well.

Justin Sutton:

Yeah. When you can just control it with your foot, it’s really, really nice and yeah. Super responsive. So for anyone that has Forza Horizon 4, Austin Healey Sprite, Mark 1, S1 class, all wheel drive, rally tires, take it onto some dirt. It’s incredible. Or on asphalt actually, even with the rally tires on asphalt, it’s great for drifting. It’s not competitive, but still great for drifting.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. I would never, ever guessed. You would say the words Austin Healey on this podcast.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

There we go, that happened. All right. Well, that’s two very different choices. Isn’t it? A bus and an Austin Healey. I thought, what would be what everyone else would say. I’d actually thought everyone’s going to say this. And, before we recorded, I’ll let you into a little secret, our producer did actually say this car and I’ve gone for it. It’s very straight down the middle and very predictable. I’m going to go for. Oh, it’s a second Gran Turismo car.Apologies. Oh third even. Oh wow. Okay. It is the Suzuki V6 eScudo Pike’s Peak special, 1998. And I had to read that out because it’s a very long name, but in essence, this is a Pike’s Peak hill climb car driven by Japanese driver, “Monster” Tajima. And it’s kind of a Suzuki, I mean, it’s called eScudo or but other markets might know it as Vitara, but really it’s not.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

And you could tune this to well over a thousand horsepower and it would go so quick on the long, oval in Gran Turismo 3 that the front wheels would actually take off, you’d break the physics engine of the game on the test track. Yeah. You could almost get it to fly. That’s without like modern a game or anything. And you could use that for so many events. And actually, I think there was different variations. I think it might have been first in GranTurismo 2 or an eScudo Pike’s Peak was in that game. Certainly because Pike’s Peak hill climb was in Gran Turismo 2 in the first PlayStation, but certainly for me, it was on the PlayStation two era ofGran Turismo where games, where that car was OP. And you could use it in a lot of events, especially four wheel drive events because it counted and the wing was bigger than the Battle Bus in Wreckfest alone. So I absolutely adored that car. And also just if you watch videos of it in real life, it is just as crazy, which is even better, but it was a cheap car in many ways.

John Munro:

I would say it’s possibly one of the most iconic racing game cars because of it, because it was quite understated. There is like, you know, Formula cars and Grand Turismo. There’s high end Le Mans cars. And why does this one random dirt car…

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Suzuki.

John Munro:

…Do something that breaks the physics. I just, I love that. And they didn’t get rid of it. They kept the same issue in Gran Turismo 2 and I’m pretty sure it did the same thing in Gran Turismo 2 and then through 3 and 4. And for me it’s yeah. I mean, obviously, overpowered is one word, one way of putting it, but for me it’s just super iconic because of how unique it is.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah. Nice. So I think we’ve had a smorgasbord of weird and wonderful cars there and I think you’ve all heard our impassioned rants about why we love them so much, but just to finish off, I think we should quickly go through something that’s a bit older, some sort of favorite retro car. So again, John, have you got a car from an older game perhaps that you have?

John Munro:

I do and when I say older game, it’s, it’s the same franchise as you just discussed. Tom with your over powered car and, it’s a car I know from my childhood favorite game, my favorite game of all time, quite possibly, which has Gran Turismo 4 and this car, was a car that you when you first see it, you don’t know what the heck’s going on, especially when you’re a young kid and not aware of, old-fashioned motor sport. And then you jump in the fridge and you start driving this fridge or a washing machine. And suddenly you start overtaking everyone around you and doing 200 miles an hour down the straight at Le Mans, passing prototypes. So the car I’m going to go with, and I’m sure if you’ve played this game, you’ll possibly have gone through the same experience is the Chaparral 2J which was on the of Gran Turismo 4.

Justin Sutton:

It took you awhile. Tumble past your opposition.

Justin Sutton:

I haven’t thought about that car in like 20 years or so. That is such a throwback. I have not, it wasn’t it like a two speed. Wasn’t it a two speed? I think it had gears.

John Munro:

It could out pace, like Mazda 787 on straight. And you’re just sitting there and in you’re washing machine on super fast. The clothes are as dry as they’ve ever been before.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. That’s a good one. Can you beat that Justin?

Justin Sutton:

I went really old school Need for Speed 2, I think the special edition in particular, this is a really weird card. And I’m picking this car not because it was good. Cause it wasn’t a good car in the game. I don’t think, it wasn’t even a good car in real life, but it was just super duper interesting. And I’ve always fallen in love with it and secretly admired it and wished they would bring it back. It is the Ford GT90, there’s just something about the Ford GT90 with its quad exhaust and its quad turbos and it’s ceramic parts. Yeah, it was so bizarre. It was so space, age, it looked like something out of a scifi movie, like 2001 A Space Odyssey would have a Ford GT90 in it or something like, it was just such a weird car. And again, it wasn’t good in the Need for Speed game and it wasn’t good in real life. They never made it. It was crap, but there’s just something about that car, that I just, I wished they had fixed it and, or modernized something. I love the GT90.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

There’s a video somewhere of Clarkson driving it, I think on YouTube, from the mid eighties. Yeah. It’s from an old episode of something, but it was a weird car. It was kind of like, Oh, this is what a GT of the future could look like.

John Munro:

Well, I would say it’s almost like it’s almost like a car that was built in the late nineties, I believe, but it’s like, it’s almost as if it’s if you were to say now, design a 2020 supercar, as it were you had actually never seen a 2020 supercar, that’s kind of where you would go. Right. Because it’s like new and sharp edges, but with old materials.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

It’s got the number of turbos and the orgy of numbers that it represents it’s very Bugatti ish.

John Munro:

Yeah.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yeah. Which sorry, which Need for Speed was it in again?

Justin Sutton:

Need for Speed 2. And I think maybe Need for Speed 2 special edition, I don’t know what console, but I had it on PC.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Nice. Oh, well my retro one is a bit newer than that, but it’s a bit older than John’s. It’s in a couple of games, both of which came out in 1998. And just as I was sort of joking about, you mentioned in Forza Horizon Justin, I’m going to mention a rally game. So I suppose in both Sega Rally 2 in the arcade and also Colin McRae Rally at home on PC and PlayStation came out in the same year.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

So of course, yeah, no good shout. Actually the Subaru Impreza that specifically the two door one, with the dark livery and the gold wheels, which came from tobacco advertising actually.

John Munro:

The 22B was it?

Tom Harrison-Lord:

And the 22B was the road car version.

Justin Sutton:

Was it 555, was the tobacco sponsor?

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Yup, absolutely. We shouldn’t be talking about that so much. I don’t think, we don’t condone it, but that’s what the livery color came from. And it’s the colors that I think that this is a great retro car because a modern, Subaru’s, actually in America this year, they came back with a similar sort of livery. But for many years, just in the nineties, that was the car. It also made a really unique noise because it had a boxer engine and nothing else really has a boxer engine. So it sounded different and it looks spectacular with delivery. So I’ve gone for a livery more than anything, but that is my retro car of choice.

Justin Sutton:

You specified the two door.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

There was a four door, but the two door, with the wide arches, the 22B one.

Justin Sutton:

I’m flustered.

John Munro:

That car for me, more time, it’s one of those rare cars where the more often I see it, the more I fall in love with it. And I think that the two door specific version has gone for me from being one of my like favourite rally cars to literally one of my all-time favorite cars, full stop. I don’t think it’s ever going to get worse because it gets prettier and prettier every single year. Or there was something about being slightly square, blocky in the older games as well. That how a certain appeal, even though it just look as realistic as it does now in like a modern game.

Justin Sutton:

So even though it was kind of blocky, you know, the angles were a little bit sharp, you’ll have that like aggressive race car, racey look. There was a little bit, if I remember correctly, a little bit of a rake to the body as well, where the hood was just ever so slightly lower than the backend of the car, which again, just gives it like, it looks like it’s going fast still.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

It had a big wheel on back and the air scoop on the bonnet, you know, and the massive shotgun of the exhaust. So that was the car for me.

Tom Harrison-Lord:

Well, that’s certainly been a lively debate, although we didn’t really disagree with each other, but that’s all part of the fun, we all clearly love the cars that we chose. So that’s it for this week’s Traxion podcast. Thank you very much for listening as always, if you’re listening to the audio version, please subscribe via your favorite podcast app. And if you’re on YouTube, be sure to like, and subscribe. You can also leave a comment with your favorite racing game car, tell us how wrong we were on the YouTube comments. Or on Traxion.GG the website in the comment, section there too. As ever, go faster.

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