Forza Horizon 5 has over 500 cars in its huge car list, and covers a variety of different driving disciplines, from road racing to cross country, drifting to dirt racing.
Confronted with this huge amount of choice it can be hard to know what the Forza Horizon 5's best car is - and indeed there is no one answer.
In some ways, it doesn't matter. The game allows for a tremendous amount of customisation and upgrading, and part of the fun can be modding a vintage micro-car into a drag race rocket, or a delivery van into an S2-class race car.
However, it's useful to narrow it down if you want to get the most out of each class. This page covers our picks for the best cars in a variety of categories - from the best S1 and A classes to drift and off road cars - as well as, of course, our fastest car in Forza Horizon 5 pick.
Our best car recommendations in Forza Horizon 5 explained
It's worth reiterating there's no single best choice for a best car in Forza Horizon 5 - overall or in any individual category.
Trying to work this out yourself is part of the fun. We encourage you to explore the huge range of cars available, to find cars that suit your driving style - or that you just like the look of - and adapt them to your needs.
That said, some situations require something more specific, while for the Horizon Open multiplayer mode, you'll need to have a good all-rounder car in each of the game's performance classes. So we've come up with some recommendations for you below.
For each one, we've chosen a car that is relatively easy to get in the game, and in many cases we've also suggested a tuning set-up to download from the community which will optimise the car for the task at hand. We've also mentioned a few alternatives in each case.
On this page:
The fastest car in Forza Horizon 5
"Fastest" can mean different things - the fastest accelerating car, the quickest through bends, or the car with the highest top speed.
For the purposes of this guide we'll take it to mean mostly the latter, but keeping in mind that good handling and acceleration are essential too for the car to perform well in most situations.
This would be an excellent choice if you're looking for the best car for speed traps and speed zones (on tarmac as opposed to dirt). Typically you will want to apply an X class tune to your car to get the absolute highest speeds, but note that this means it will be ineligible for even S2 class events.
For absolute top speed the clear choice is the Koenigsegg Jesko, which can be tuned to reach speeds of over 300mph on long straights. Also deserving a shout-out just for its novelty factor is the Porsche Taycan Turbo S "Welcome Pack" - an electric car that can reach almost 270mph out of the box!
However, we've selected more of an all-rounder for our pick: the Lamborghini Sesto Forza Edition. Topping out at about 270-280mph, this absurdly fast car is all over the early leaderboards for the majority of speed traps and speed zones and will three-star them all with ridiculous ease. Try LostTobi6773's "WIP" tune.
The only downside of the Sesto is it's expensive - it's a reward car that is commanding high prices (over 4 million credits) on the auction house. A good cheaper alternative would be the Mosler MT900S, our fastest car pick for Forza Horizon 4, which can be had from the Autoshow for 320,000 credits.
The best S2 class car in Forza Horizon 5
Our S1, S1 and A class car picks are all made with road racing and street racing in mind - these cars are the best for driving on tarmac surfaces. For dirt and off road picks, check out the selections below.
Our fastest car pick, the Lamborghini Sesto FE, would also be a great choice for an S2 class car. You don't even need to download a tune - its stock tune will work well for most S2 class events.
On more technical, low-speed layouts, you have to give the BMW X5 M Forza Edition a try. It has insane grip, is blisteringly fast, and has the novelty value of being a giant SUV covered in racing aero.
Our pick for the widest range of road racing layouts, though, is the Apollo Intensa Emozione. It looks very dramatic but, with the right tune, it boasts incredible grip and drama-free cornering even at speeds over 150mph. Use the "Welcome Pack" version in its stock tune, or pick up the regular car from the auction house (where it can be found cheaper than the Autoshow) and download a good S2 998 tune from the community.
The best S1 class car in Forza Horizon 5
As we move down the classes, things open up a lot more and a wider selection of cars will be competitive. To a large extent, you can pick almost anything from your garage and find a decent tune for it.
Some cars do pop up more regularly than others in the Rivals leaderboards, however. On shorter, more technical layouts, the BAC Mono or Lotus Elise GT1 would be a good choice for S1 class.
For more of an all-rounder, the Honda NSX-R GT is an excellent choice, but it's a reward car and not cheap to pick up on the auction house.
Our pick is a car you can acquire easily for free as a barn find - even though, in the real world, it's extremely pricey and rare. The Jaguar XJR-15 is a Le Mans-based V12 monster that looks and sounds incredible and will be competitive on most layouts. The marketplace has a variety of tunes for it focusing on different characteristics, but we like the all-round balance of Quasmin's "Handling" tune. Check out our Forza Horizon 5 Barn Finds guide for where to find it.
The best A class car in Forza Horion 5
You'll find a huge variety of cars performing well in A class racing and Rivals, so there's a lot of opportunity to express yourself in what, for us, is the most fun racing class in the game.
Fancy driving a classic muscle car? The 1968 Dodge Dart Hemi Super Stock - a Forza mainstay, available as a barn find in this game - will do nicely. Want to drive something outlandish? How about the Hot Wheels Bone Shaker. The Sierra RX3 off road buggy is surprisingly competitive on tight, technical road layouts.
For a great all-round driver that delivers a blast of Gran Turismo nostalgia to boot, our pick is the Nissan Skyline GT-R V-SPEC 1997, which is cheap to pick up at the Autoshow. Try Ash46Desync's "Very Strong Road" tune.
The best rally car in Forza Horizon 5
By rally car, we mean the best Forza Horizon 5 dirt car - the best car for taking on rough or loose track surfaces. We're going to focus on S1 class for our pick, as it's the most popular class for dirt races in the Horizon Open.
The Ford Racing Puma Forza Edition is hard to beat - we've noticed it completely dominating Horizon Open races in this class. But it's a DLC car, included with the Expansion Pack, so it might be inaccessible to you.
Failing that, you can't go wrong with the Hoonigan Ford RS200 Evolution, which is best picked up from the Autoshow for 500,000 credits. This car is a fantastic all-rounder for all sorts of challenges, including drifts and PR stunts, and it's great for dirt racing too. It actually starts in S2 class, but you can detune it to S1 900 with Don Joewon Song's "S1 Rally Beast" tune. (DJS is a Forza community legend - check out his top 10 Forza Horizon 5 cars video below for some more great picks and tunes.)
The best off road car in Forza Horizon 5
In this section we'll identify the best Forza Horizon 5 cross country car - the best car to use in the cross country series that take you completely off the beaten track. This time, we're going to focus on A class for our pick, since it's more common in cross country events.
Your choices for true off road performance are limited. Even rally cars won't handle the bigger jumps and obstacles that well. You need big wheels, lots of suspension travel and lots of ground clearance. That means SUVs, off roaders and buggies are the way to go. Buggies are good on technical circuits but for longer runs you'll need something with a higher top speed.
Fortunately, you don't need to shell out at all for a couple of great off road performers. The GMC Jimmy barn find is great on the shorter cross country circuits. And for an all-rounder you could do a lot worse than our pick, the Ford Bronco 2021 which was gifted to you at the very start of the game. Bang Don Joweon Song's "#1 Cross Country" tune on it and you're good to go.
Welcome to the festival! Check out our Hot Wheels car list, Hammer Mountain location, and how to complete the Park Tour challenge pages if you're enjoying the Hot Wheels DLC. If you're after new vehicles, we have barn find locations and a list of the best cars in Forza Horizon 5. If you're just starting, we can help with the early Apex, Wilds or Baja choice, with covers the Jungle, Volcano and Tulum, as well as how to change seasons.
The best drift car in Forza Horizon 5
Drifting is one of the more technical and demanding driving disciplines in Forza Horizon, but it's also one of those where the game is most easily broken by clever tunes, which is why you'll find such unlikely vehicles as the Willys Jeep, Caterham R500 and even the minuscule BMW Isetta riding high in the Drift Zone leaderboards.
We prefer to do it properly in one of the game's bespoke drift cars - and the good news is that the most desirable drift cars in Forza Horizon 4, which were either very rare rewards or DLC cars in that game, are now available for all to buy from the autoshow. Yes the #88 / #25 Ford Mustang RTR 2018 or the Hoonigan Ford "Hoonicorn" Mustang 1965 are finally within your grasp!
Our pick, however, and the most common sight on the leaderboards, is the Formula Drift #43 Dodge Viper SRT10. This car loves drifting so much it's actually hard to drive in a straight line. We particularly like how it breaks traction at lower revs than some other drift cars, making it a little easier on the gear changes.