Is the Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels DLC expansion worth it?

Is the Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels DLC expansion worth it?

Best answer: Until the official release of Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels, it’s unclear if it will deliver on all of its ambitious promises. From what we’ve seen, however, it looks like FH5’s first DLC expansion will be a great addition to the open-world racing game, with hours of new content delivered to players alongside a diverse new map, an autonomous campaign and more cars.

The return of a legend

Official screenshot from Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels.

(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

Forza Horizon, the long-running open-world arcade racing franchise from Playground Games and Xbox Game Studios, and Hot Wheels, the legendary toy franchise that has been creating miniature cars for decades, have partnered with DLC in the past. Hot Wheels from Forza Horizon 3. The dynamic duo return once again with the first DLC expansion for Forza Horizon 5, a Mexico-inspired map expansion that allows players to race among the clouds along tracks and exciting Hot Wheels tracks.

Although the idea is not original, Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels is certainly a departure from its predecessor and offers a whole new world with four incredibly diverse and unique biomes to explore, a new range of cars to collect and a wide variety of Hot Wheels tracks that players can even use to create their own custom races with EventLab.

Forza Horizon 5 has long proven itself as one of the best racing games you can play, but many gamers have been waiting months for its first expansion to deliver new content and cars to the game.

Some of the highlight features of Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels include:

  • Four new biomes to explore in the Horizon Hot Wheels Park, all of which are available to explore immediately after completing the initial experience. Free Fast Travel will also be available to all players throughout the park from the start. The four biomes include:
    • Forest Falls, a beautiful and vibrant green forest filled with stunning waterfalls and water features
    • Giant’s Canyon, a rugged and towering rocky valley that dwarfs the base game’s Copper Canyon with its depth and variety
    • Ice Cauldron, a daunting juxtaposition between freezing, frozen tundra and boiling lakes and rivers of molten lava
    • Horizon Nexus, a festival site suspended in the clouds, which serves as the hub for the Horizon Hot Wheels Park
  • Over 100 miles of trails inspired by Hot Wheels playsets. To be exact, Playground Games promises over 200 kilometers of Hot Wheels tracks, with multiple varieties that aim to make every race and experience completely unique. Different track variations include:
    • Standard tracks, which will be the most common throughout the Hot Wheels fleet
    • Magnetic tracks, which help players defy gravity with stomach-churning loops, flips, and turns
    • Ice tracks, which test the traction of even the most capable off-road vehicles with smooth, frozen surfaces
    • Water flume tracks, which combine water park fun with high-speed racing by flowing water along the track
    • Rough tracks, which will threaten to disrupt the control of even the most experienced riders with uneven and bumpy surfaces
    • Power boosters, which will propel your cars to higher and higher speeds, allowing you to pull off even riskier stunts and jumps
  • An independent campaign known simply as Hot Wheels Academy, in which players will start out limited to Class B cars, and slowly work their way up to Class X and the coveted Hot Wheels Legend championship title. Players can progress through Horizon Academy by completing bespoke events and activities.
  • New worlds and gameplay features to discover as they explore the Hot Wheels Park, including:
    • New Honors for Various Hot Wheels Parks Actions, Events and Achievements
    • New bonus tables to break for various perks and bonuses
    • New floating Piñata collectibles to find and smash
    • New PR Stunts to test your abilities
    • A new five-part Horizon story exploring the origin of Hot Wheels
    • Special Hot Wheels Heats events that can be unlocked by completing specific missions
    • Seasonal Hot Wheels Events Courtesy of Forza Horizon 5 Festival Playlist
  • A more connected experience which aims to bring players together, including:
    • Open online co-op from the start and throughout Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels, including Horizon Academy
    • Horizon Open and Horizon Tour Events and Races
    • A new Hot Wheels Creation Kit with over 80 parts and accessories for EventLab, allowing players to design and build their own races and events that can be shared with the community
  • 10 new cars to collect which range from brand new Hot Wheels additions to the Forza Horizon franchise, as well as other additions to the rapidly growing Forza Horizon 5 car roster. New cars we know of include:
    • 2000 Hot Wheels Deora II
    • 2006 Mosler MT900 GT3
    • 2012 Hot Wheels bad at the blade
    • Hot Wheels Baja Bone Shaker 2013
    • Hot Wheels 2018 Chevrolet Camaro COPO
    • Subaru WRX STI ARX Supercar 2018
    • Brabham BT62 2019
    • 2020 SIERRA Cars ALPHA #23 Yokohama
    • 2021 Hennessey Venom F5

Still to prove itself

Official screenshot from Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels.

(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

This all sounds great on paper, but the fact remains that Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels hasn’t been released yet and therefore hasn’t had a chance to prove itself. What we’ve seen looks incredible, but we’ll have to wait for the final release to really dive in and see if Playground Games has managed to create another masterpiece with FH5’s first DLC expansion.

Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels officially releases on July 19, 2022 and is coming to Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC platforms. It will also be available through Xbox Cloud Gaming for DLC owners, and Xbox Game Pass, PC Game Pass, and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers will be eligible for discounts on purchasing the new DLC or any bundle it’s included in.

There are many ways to acquire Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels, including:

  • A standalone purchase, which only includes this DLC expansion and nothing else. Retail price is $20 and is now available for pre-order
  • The Forza Horizon 5 Expansions Bundle DLC, which includes Forza Horizon 5: Hot Wheels and another currently unannounced DLC expansion. Retail price is $35 and is available for purchase
  • The Forza Horizon 5 Premium Add-ons Bundle DLC, which includes the aforementioned Add-ons Bundle, as well as various other DLCs like the VIP Membership, Welcome Pack, and Car Pass DLCs. Retail price is $50 and is available for purchase