Since 1997, the Gran Turismo franchise has been synonymous with glossy, detailed and realistic racing simulators. And while its luster has come and gone over the years, it remains an iconic racing brand that has sold over 80.4 million units.
That’s the number that Sony Computer Entertainment gave us in a press statement proudly declaring it as the series’ latest milestone. This number includes the series' seven mainline releases, as well as various "Prologue" and "Online" titles, the 2006 HD remake and the 2009 Sony PSP release.
Beginning with 1997's Gran Turismo, the franchise has grown to become the second most successful video game racing franchise, trailing right behind Nintendo’s Mario Kart series. We wouldn’t dare suggest that Mario Kart ain’t a “real” racing franchise, but in my opinion, that kind of makes Gran Turismo first when it comes to hardcore realistic racing.
"It’s hard to imagine that 80.4 million copies of Gran Turismo have been played during the 20-year history of the franchise," said series creator Kazunori Yamauchi. "It makes me really happy to think of the immense amount of time that has been poured into playing our games! We would like to continue our efforts in achieving the best possible expression and creation of cars and scenery, as well as bringing the highest level of excitement and fun through racing in the years to come."
The series’ last installment was 2017’s Gran Turismo Sport, which featured a smaller lineup of cars than Gran Turismo 6 but dug into the guts of the franchise’s design to focus on better competitive gameplay and improved driver training.