Forza Horizon 5 'Explore the Horizon' brings six new cars, new Photo Mode features

Image of Forza Horizon 5 Series 21 "Explore the Horizon."
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

What you need to know

  • Forza Horizon 5 Series 21 "Explore the Horizon" is the next content update for Playground Games' flagship racing title.
  • The update brings a ton of new features to Photo Mode, six new-to-Forza vehicles, new Accolades and activities, and more.
  • It also includes a decent number of additional bug fixes and improvements for Forza Horizon 5.
  • Forza Horizon 5's Explore the Horizon update releases on Tuesday, May 23, while its accompanying Festival Playlist begins on Thursday, May 25.

Forza Horizon 5 may not be the newest video game on the block anymore, but it's still enjoying regular updates with new content and improvements. On Monday, Playground Games revealed the next big update for Forza Horizon 5, and it's right around the corner.

The next update heading to Forza Horizon 5 players sits under the "Explore the Horizon" title, and is the 21st Festival Playlist Series for the game. In a blog post and Forza Monthly livestream, Playground Games detailed what players can expect from the update, which is all about exploring the beauty of FH5's Mexico.

Here's what you need to know.

  • Massive Photo Mode improvements. Forza Horizon 5 already boasts a full-featured Photo Mode (and the community has captured some truly impressive shots), but it's about to get a whole lot better with new features, including:
    • The ability to change the time of day
    • The ability to change the weather
    • The ability to change the tilt of your vehicle's wheels
    • The ability to position your character outside of the vehicle
    • The ability to use your character's emotes for poses
    • A way to enable different visual guidelines, including one to preview how a photo will look in portrait orientation
    • The ability to create and save Photo Presets to quickly access your favorite settings
  • New cars. Like always, the latest Forza Horizon 5 update includes brand-new vehicles. This time around, there are six new-to-Forza cars coming to the Forza Horizon 5 car list — including two EVs!
    • 1972 Chevrolet K-10 Custom
    • 1986 Ford F-150 XLT Lariat
    • 2019 DeBerti Ford Super Duty F-250 Lariat "Transformer"
    • 2021 CUPRA Formentor VZ5
    • 2022 CUPRA Tavascan Concept
    • 2022 GMC HUMMER EV Pickup
  • New Pathfinder Challenges. A new kind of challenge is joining the Forza Horizon 5 Festival Playlist with Pathfinder. Travel to a designated starting point and then follow the route by finding trail marker balloons, which will take you on a trip across Mexico.
    • There are a total of 12 Pathfinder Challenges in Forza Horizon 5 Series 21, with three each Season
    • Completing all three Pathfinder routes in a Season will reveal a nearby Treasure Chest to locate and smash
    • Completing all 12 Pathfinder routes will unlock a new Player Badge.
  • New Accolades. Leaderboard climbers can complete new Accolade challenges, with well over two dozen Accolades surrounding the new Photo Mode features and Pathfinder Challenges.
  • New vehicle modifications. The new "Overlanding" vehicle modification introduced in Forza Horizon 5: Rally Adventure exclusively for the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum is now coming to 16 additional trucks in Forza Horizon 5 "Explore the Horizon."
  • More EventLab props. Once again, the growing EventLab catalog of props and items is expanding. This time, pieces of the Horizon Oval Circuit are being added to the "Racing" category.
  • Lots of bug fixes. Playground Games has baked in a sizeable number of general bug fixes and improvements in this update, including improvements for crashes when editing saved projects in EventLab, various fixes for incorrect car models or customization options, missing mouse cursors on PC, and more.

Following a high-performance, asphalt-racing focused update, it makes sense that Playground Games would follow it with the "Explore the Horizon" update. Players will have new reasons to explore the gorgeous map of Mexico while adding a variety of brand-new cars to their garage. The 2022 HUMMER EV is likely to be particularly exciting for many players, as it combines overwhelming size with overwhelming speed and power.

Forza Horizon 5 is still going strong as one of the best Xbox racing games you can play, and it shows no signs of slowing down. With Forza Motorsport (2023) coming later this year, it's never been a better time to be an Xbox racing fan.

Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer for Windows Central, primarily focused on covering the latest news in tech and gaming, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting Windows and Xbox hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life starting with the original Xbox, and started out as a freelancer for Windows Central and its sister sites in 2019. Now a full-fledged Staff Writer, Zachary has expanded from only writing about all things Minecraft to covering practically everything on which Windows Central is an expert, especially when it comes to Microsoft. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.