The Cult of Cars, Racing and Everything That Moves You.
We may earn a commission from links on this page

Ten Old Car Video Games That Are Still Great Today

We may earn a commission from links on this page.

Break out your old consoles, fire up your emulators, and head to your local arcade! These games are still classics.

10.) OutRun

If you’re looking for the most 1986 car video game out there, it’s OutRun. You and your blonde companion race through Miami in a Testarossa Convertible with a complete disregard for the laws, as well as phyisics.


If an arcade has OutRun, you’re legally obligated to play it.

Suggested By: POD

9.) Need For Speed: Porsche Unleashed

Bemoaning the lack of Porsches in modern games like Gran Turismo? Dig Need For Speed: Porsche Unleashed, it has almost all of them from 356 to 996 Turbo.


There’s a fun career mode where you start out with Pre-A 356s and work your way through the Porsche range, and a Test Driver mode where you learn how to do J-turns and cool stuff.

Suggested By: J John

8.) Ivan “Ironman” Stewart’s Super Off Road

The NES version of this one is great, but the one to seek out is the 3-player console version with its infinitely spinning steering wheels. Also, that music. My ears have never heard such sensuous, soulful sounds.

From Vintage1982Benz:

“I played this a few weeks ago at a barcade in Chicago and had forgotten about the wheel. Once you get the feel it becomes a perfect game to play with one hand while using your other to hold a can of beer. All about the fluidity of motion.”


Suggested By: tromoly

7.) Colin McRae Rally 2.0

It’s like Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater series, except replace Hawk with Colin McRae, and replace Birdhouse skateboards with a Lancia Delta Group A.


Perhaps that’s an oversimplification, just watch the video above and you’ll get it.

Suggested By: Full of the sound of the Gran Fury, signifying nothing.

6.) Spy Hunter

Spy Hunter is a classic for a good reason. You play an edgy spy who shoots at bad guys from your car while a hilarious electronic version of the Peter Gunn theme plays in the background.


Suggested By: Stig-a-saw-us-wrecks

5.) Twisted Metal

Who doesn’t love a good demolition derby game set in the dystopian near future? No one.


Everything about this absurd, but that’s what makes it such fun!

Suggested By: I don’t think so Tim

4.) Mario Kart 64

Mario Kart 64 is the car game that all of your friends have played, not just the geeks who played Gran Turismo.


Even with many new and ostensibly “better” versions of the Mario Kart franchise, 64 will never ever get old.

Suggested By: DennyCraneDennyCraneDennyCrane

3.) Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2

The original Hot Pursuit is a classic but Need For Speed really nailed it with the second version. Epic cars, epic tracks, epic shortcuts, and epic police chases. This game has everything.


Also, on the PC version it was hilariously easy to go into the games files and modify the car’s .txt specs files. I may or may not have made a taxi with 2,000 hp in that game.

Suggested By: Alex B ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

2.) Gran Turismo 2

All the Gran Turismo games are great, but there was just something about GT2. Maybe it’s my nostolgia at work, since it was the first racing game I ever played, but it seems that the commenters feel the same way.


This wasn’t a game like Mario Kart or even Need For Speed that you could play with all your friends, but for car geeks, it was heaven.

Suggested By: Le Monstre

1.) Pole Position

Pole Position was not the first racing game, but somehow it feels that way. There’s just something about it that makes it feel completely timeless, even if it’s totally dated.


Suggested By: JohnnyWasASchoolBoy

Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day’s Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It’s by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!


Top Photo Credit: Polyphony via YouTube

Contact the author at