Best PC Racing Games of All Time

Is there anything more satisfying than swinging the backend of a Lamborghini around a sweeping bend, putting your foot to the floor and racing past the rest of the pack with driving music pumping through the radio? Probably not. But which PC racing games do it best?

While it may have given way to the console scene in recent years, PC has still always been a hot bed for some of the top racing games across all of the different genres. Before your Gran Turismos and your Forza Motorsports started leading the way on console, there were a ton of old racing games for the PC that made it the go-to device for many budding petrolheads, with Geoff Crammond's F1 sims fondly remembered by some as the leaders of the pack. But with the arrive of Project Cars, we're now in a renaissance for the platform and it's where some of the best PC car games can be found.

The great thing, is they're also so varied. Whether it's rally games, simulation driving experiences, arcade or multiplayer racing games, or games that are connected with Formula 1, there's so much to choose from. And with power-house franchises like DiRT and Need for Speed still innovating and iterating, things will only improve in the future. So with that, here's the top 30 PC racing games of all-time.

  • 30.

    Race Driver: GRID Review

    Race Driver: GRID

    Race Driver GRID on DS can't really compete with the ultra slick game of the same name released on 360, PS3 and PC, but it does still offer some fun arcade racing on a platform short on good racers. Codemasters' Race Driver GRID turned out to be one of the best Arcade racers... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC,PC

  • 29.

    GTR Evolution Review

    GTR Evolution

    GTR Evolution is definitely an evolution of the series, as opposed to a revolution, and while the game is in need of a graphical overhaul, the rest of the game is all you could ask from a racing sim. Some would consider the idea that people can derive enjoyment out of... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 28.

    Need for Speed Shift Review

    Need for Speed Shift

    Need For Speed: Shift is a brilliant new start for the franchise and has clearly been built by a team that loves racing. Shift comes highly recommended to all racing game fans. When EA announced that it would be giving its Need for Speed games more... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 27.

    Hydro Thunder Hurricane Review

    Hydro Thunder Hurricane

    1200 Microsoft Points might be seen as a lot by some people, but there's really a lot of content here, all wrapped up in some of the slickest presentation seen in an arcade-style XBLA release. If you owned a Dreamcast and didn't love Hydro Thunder you are probably dead... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

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  • 26.

    Need for Speed Hot Pursuit Review

    Need for Speed Hot Pursuit

    Despite feeling like a fusion of Need for Speed and Burnout, Hot Pursuit is still the most exciting title the franchise has seen in a long time. It was always going to be hard for Criterion's Need for Speed to break free... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 25.

    Driver: San Francisco Review

    Driver: San Francisco

    Driver San Francisco could have been a one-trick pony but it has managed to use that trick in a variety of clever and interesting ways, ensuring the driving gameplay never becomes tiresome or generic. There's a lot to be said for offering something new. While Driver San... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC,PC

  • 24.

    F1 2012 Review

    F1 2012

    The subtle improvements are almost invisible to an untrained eye, but F1 nuts will find immeasurable satisfaction in taming and tuning this year’s cars to performance perfection. Motorsport can deliver incredible drama. So far the 2012 season has been... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 23.

    Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Review

    Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

    Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing Transformed mixes some wonderfully loving nostalgia and ambitious design to create a credible Mario Kart alternative. A worrying and terrifying fact I realised the other day is that those of us... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 22.

    GRID 2 Review

    GRID 2

    Another quality racing game from Codemasters. When it comes to racing games, there are two camps. There are the... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

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  • 21.

    F1 2013 Review

    F1 2013

    An accomplished racer, but one that needs some competition to really move forward. Much like Sebastian Vettel's unchallenged run of victories, Codemasters' F1... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 20.

    Project CARS Review

    Project CARS

    It's been a long road to release, but Project Cars delivers. Update: With Project Cars having now having been out for two weeks, we've... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 19.

    Trackmania Turbo Review

    Trackmania Turbo

    Competing against friends to fastest times is going to be a bit of an addiction, again like Trials, and for only £25 I can't see many reasons not to give Trackmania Turbo a whirl. Trackmania Turbo is the thrilling arcade racer this generation has been... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 18.

    DiRT Rally Review

    DiRT Rally

    DiRT Rally, then, isn't a true successor to the DiRT series you might know and love, but it's a better rally experience if you're willing to put in the work. DiRT Rally is not DiRT 4. You might already know that, and the fact that it... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 17.

    ToCA Race Driver 3

    If you're a racing fan ToCA Race Driver 3 is a no brainer. It's got game modes and racing disciplines bursting from every polygonal seam and it's smart enough to cater for beginners and novices alike. Codemasters certainly isn't afraid to go head-to-head with the big boys. The... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 16.

    OutRun 2006: Coast 2 Coast

    If the idea of powersliding brings about even the slightest tingle of excitement in you, OutRun 2006 needs to be in your collection - the version you choose is up to you. It's strange how certain games are tied to a system so tightly that you... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 15.

    GTR 2

    With fabulous visuals, solid sound, and physics that would make Stephen Hawking jealous, GTR 2 is easily the finest racing simulation available for the PC. Until the release of this game's predecessor, GTR, back in early 2005, the... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 14.

    Burnout Paradise Review

    Burnout Paradise

    For true next-gen arcade racing thrills Burnout Paradise is most definitely your best option. Don't want to read the review? Head over to the video player... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC,PC

  • 13.

    Need for Speed: Undercover Review

    Need for Speed: Undercover

    A unique control set up combined with a well-executed, well-established franchise makes this a definite must have for fans of the series and newcomers alike. Need for Speed Undercover has been released on practically every format you... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC,PC,PC

  • 12.

    Colin McRae: DiRT 2 Review

    Colin McRae: DiRT 2

    Wrap up an enjoyable rally experience with the best racing game visuals we've ever seen and DIRT 2 becomes a must-buy game. If review scores were handed out for slickness alone Codemasters' Colin... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 11.

    Blur Review


    Blur is a modern take on the Mario Kart formula, done in a way that feels incredibly cool and refreshing. I didn't like the idea of Blur. Ever since I was told about Bizarre... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 10.

    F1 2010 Review

    F1 2010

    F1 2010 is one of the most comprehensive and complete Formula 1 offerings to date, and has everything we’ve come to expect from the genre over the years. The roar of an engine and the smell of petrol will forever remind me of one... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 9.

    Shift 2: Unleashed Review

    Shift 2: Unleashed

    If you're a serious fan of the genre, know that Shift 2 does several things better than anything else on the market right now, which makes it an essential purchase. My advice? Don't bother with any of the exterior cameras when playing Shift... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 8.

    DiRT 3 Review

    DiRT 3

    DiRT 3 is hard to pick fault with. It's got the looks, the style, the superb sense of speed, and spot-on handling model that blurs the line between sim and arcade. Codemasters undoubtedly has one of the best racing game development studios... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 7.

    Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Review

    Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing

    Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing has all the best qualities that Mario Kart initiated years ago and features controls tailored to the portable iOS devices. Sonic and SEGA All-Stars Racing was released across multiple platforms last... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC,PC

  • 6.

    F1 2011 Review

    F1 2011

    While casual players might question whether much is different a year down the road after 2010, those in the know will agree that F1 2011 is the most complete representation of the sport to date. You're screaming towards a rather terrifying-looking chicane at 180mph. The... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 5.

    Joe Danger 2: The Movie Review

    Joe Danger 2: The Movie

    Joe Danger 2 can be an incredibly tricky game, but it’s one that always puts a smile on my face. You can go a long way with a smile. When determined stuntman Joe Danger... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 4.

    Need For Speed: Most Wanted (2012) Review

    Need For Speed: Most Wanted (2012)

    Need for Speed: Most Wanted's greatest achievement is how it sets such a firm focus on racing. Criterion set out to make an open-world arcade racer where competition is king, and succeeded. Like the cold metal girders and sun-glinted glass panels that make up... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 3.

    Trials Fusion Review

    Trials Fusion

    A melding of the established template and something just new enough, RedLynx’s creation is a wonderful thing. The Trials series increasingly faces a common creative challenge. Just how... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 2.

    Forza Horizon 3 Review

    Forza Horizon 3

    Forza Horizon 3 is a beautiful, immensely entertaining, joyous arcade racer that successfully builds on Playground Games' already tremendous formula. Racing games have gotten very serious. With arcade games like Blur, Split... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC

  • 1.

    Forza Horizon 4 review

    Forza Horizon 4

    A beautiful Britain, an exuberant driving engine, and generosity of spirit make Forza Horizon 4 a masterclass. If Georges Bizet had gotten inside a Subaru Impreza WRX STI and thundered... more

    Reviewed on:   Platforms: PC