Forza Horizon 5's retro update drops with over 20 new songs, 5 more cars, and Minecraft tributes

Image of Forza Horizon 5 'Horizon Retrowave.'
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

What you need to know

  • Forza Horizon 5 is getting hit with a neon-soaked blast from the past, grabbing new futuristic cars, and rocking you with nearly two dozen new songs.
  • Horizon Retrowave is the latest content update for Xbox's flagship open-world racing game.
  • A new radio station, Horizon Wave, boasts 21 new tracks to blast while cruising the Neon Highway.
  • Five new cars are also included in this update, as well as some Minecraft cosmetics to celebrate that game's 15-year anniversary.

Recent updates

May 22, 2024 — Updated with the news that Forza Horizon 5's "Horizon Retrowave" update is available, and the corresponding Festival Playlist kicks off tomorrow.

Right on schedule, the "Horizon Retrowave" Festival Playlist is kicking off tomorrow in Forza Horizon 5, and the update is already available to download. That means a brand-new radio station with lots of music, some sweet neon decorations in the world, and the chance to score the new Lamborghini Countach this week if you complete enough challenges or events. It also means you should check your Message Center, as you may find some Minecraft-themed gifts waiting for you there.

Our original article continues below.

Forza Horizon 5 simply refuses to stop racing forward, and Playground Games has now revealed everything we need to know about the epic racing game's next major content update. Horizon Retrowave is kicking off next week, and it'll take you straight to the 1980s with endless neon, pulsing new songs, and awesome car additions. This update is dripping with style, giving Forza Horizon 5 players more ways to party in Mexico.

Playground Games showed off the update in a new Let's Go! livestream you can check out below, but I'll go through everything coming in the Horizon Retrowave update so you don't have to sit through it all.

Without further ado, here are all the details you could possibly need on Forza Horizon 5's 'Horizon Retrowave' update, including the new cars, songs, props, and more. There's even a surprise appearance from Minecraft!

  • Five new cars. As part of the new Festival Playlist, the Forza Horizon 5 car list is once again expanding with five new vehicles for players to collect. These cars are either 80s classics or inspired by them, fitting the Retrowave theme.
    • 1980 Lotus Esprit Turbo
    • 1986 BMW M635CSi
    • 1986 Citroen BX 4TC
    • 2021 Lamborghini Countach LPI 800-4
    • 2022 Hyundai N Vision 74
  • Horizon Wave radio station. FH5 players are in for a treat, as a brand-new radio station to fill your head with tunes while you drive is coming with Horizon Retrowave. This radio station features a new DJ, Isabel Moss, and is themed around pulsing synthwave music. There are 21 tracks on the radio station, including some new streaming friendly songs.
  • Neon decorations. The Evolving World strikes again, as Forza Horizon 5 gets a little bit of a neon makeover. Most of it is centered around the legendary Highway, which is getting decked out in gorgeous and bright neon lights, complete with a neon drone show in the distance. Oh, but there's a lot more than that.
    • Neon decorations on the Highway actually sync to the music you're currently listening to
    • Nights are going to be longer for the duration of the update, too, giving players more time to enjoy the neon lights
    • Races that featured neon decorations during the Midnight at Horizon series are making a comeback
  • New EventLab props. The EventLab is getting a sizeable injection of new props, and I can already see the potential for creators. There are 20 new neon props, and all but two of those props will sync to the music currently being played for a dynamic light show. Players can also choose between three light pattern variations.
  • More cosmetics, including from Minecraft. Players are getting more ways to show off their style in Horizon Retrowave. There's a brand-new full-body suit complete with neon pants and a leather jacket, for one, but there's more beyond that.
    • Forza Horizon 5 is celebrating Minecraft's 15-year anniversary with two new hats modeled after the Creeper and Enderman from the iconic survival-crafting series. Players can redeem the hats for free from the Message Center
    • There will also be six new retro-themed car horns for players to earn in various ways

You can check above for a few images from the Horizon Retrowave update, including a list of all the new songs on the Horizon Wave radio station. Overall, I love FH5 updates that firmly stand behind their theme, and this update definitely qualifies. The neon decorations look great, and the possibilities for the new EventLab props are exciting. I'm also a huge fan of the new cars, especially the 2022 Hyundai N Vision 74 (I think it looks incredible).

If you're already impatient for what's next for the best Xbox racing game, though, Playground Games did offer a tease. 'Modern Horizons' is the next Forza Horizon 5 content update, and it'll apparently add a car that the FH5 community has been requesting for a long time. I'm not sure what car that could be, but I'm excited to find out.

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.