iRacing's Big Update is Here: Highlights of Season 3 2023

iRacing Season 3 2023 Porsche 911 GT3 R 992.jpg
Image credit: iRacing

As iRacing enters Season 3 of 2023, sim racers can look forward to a substantial update to the service: New content, countless under-the-hood changes and a few small adjustments to improve quality of life are inbound - here are the highlights of the new season's build.

Leading up to the update, the spotlight has been on the new content: Not only does iRacing get two new tracks in Willow Springs and Motorland Aragón, but three new cars are set to expand the service's roster even further: Prototype fans can now get behind the wheel of the Cadillac V-Series.R LMDh car and the smaller Ligier JS P320 LMP3 car, and GT3 drivers will likely look forward to the new Porsche 911 GT3 R (992) being added.


The arrival of the latter means that its older 991 version is moving over to the legacy roster of content. Should you recently have bought the previous Porsche, there is no need to be disappointed, though: As of June 5th, anyone who has bought the car within the previous 180 days will receive a full refund. If your purchase was made between 180 and 360 days before that date, you will be reimbursed 50% of the price, and should you have bought the vehicle more than 360 days ago, 25% of its price will be refunded to you. The refunds will be made in iRacing Credits.


Dirt Refresh Project​

iRacing's dirt racing scene should be delighted that loose surfaces have received special attention for the new update: All dirt tracks have been updated regarding their progression of dynamic track data, and all dirt racing tires have seen substantial improvements as well.

As the evolution of a track is a key part of racing on dirt, numerous factors that influence these changes have been taken into account and improved as well to create a more realisitic experience, such as dirt height variance, the displacement of dirt by the tires, and the wetness of the racing surface. To achieve this, iRacing has worked with vehicle dynamicists, developers and testers.

iRacing Season 3 2023 Willow Springs 3D Foliage System.jpg

Trackside vegetation is set too look much more authentic in the future, thanks to the 3D Foliage System. Image credit: iRacing

3D Foliage System​

While not a groundbreaking addition connected to the driving itself, the new 3D Foliage System helps immersion by automatically creating location-appropriate trackside vegetation. The system has been showcased using screenshots of Willow Springs, which will be the only circuit to use the system for the time being - but more are to come.

The system comes with several levels of detail so performance does not necessarily have to take a hit - it can also be disabled entirely to keep lower-spec PCs from losing performance to the point of the system impacting the driving.

Less Cockpit Obstructions​

One of the smaller features to be added, the option to hide cockpit obstructions could potentially make the lives of many sim racers easier. Should the graphics option be enabled, car elements like the central halo pillar, a-pillars or rock screens will no longer be blocking your view.

Especially for racers without a triple-screen or ultrawide setup, this option could make a big difference regarding their visibility from the cockpit. Modern prototypes like the newly-added Cadillac or Ligier often have their a-pillars obstruct the view from the driver's seat considerably if a sim racer's screen setup does not allow them to see out the side windows.

iRacing Season 3 2023 Ligier JS P320.jpg

The brand-new Ligier JS P320 should be just one of the cars that profit from the option to hide cockpit obstructions. Image credit: iRacing

Adieu, Windows 8.1​

A potentially overlooked but important point in the patch notes is the abandonement of Windows 8.1. As Microsoft has ceased to support the operating system, iRacing will no longer be compatible with it. As a result, the sim will not launch anymore on PCs that run Windows 8.1 - should you still be using the OS, you will have to upgrade your PC to at least Windows 10 to continue running iRacing.

Continue Reading​

Season 3 2023 Release Notes
Full Article

Your Thoughts​

With a changelog this long, there are many points that should make sim racers happy - others may not meet as much approval. What is your favorite addition, change or adjustment for iRacing's 2023 Season 3? Which piece of new content are you going to try first? Let us know your personal highlight of the update in the comments below!
About author
Yannik Haustein
Lifelong motorsport enthusiast and sim racing aficionado, walking racing history encyclopedia.

Sim racing editor, streamer and one half of the SimRacing Buddies podcast (warning, German!).

Heel & Toe Gang 4 life :D

Comments

This was already available as part of a car's setup but is now moved to the graphics option tab. Only really impacts those vehicles that already had it - dirt cars with rock screens, cars with halos, short track modifieds where it's a real life option to use clear plastic A-pillars, etc.
 
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damnit.. 2 months I quit when ACC added 992. Then iRacing is like heyyy guess what.. Willow Springs and 992 GT3.. you rats... you knew what you were doing when you added those. I guess I'll be signing back up again. Rats..
 
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I keep trying iRacing cars from time to time to see if the tyre model has been made more informative. You can acclimatize to it but the actual driving is such a disappointment after the feeling of rF2, AMS2, AC, ACC, even GTR2 and Race 07.
 
Premium
I keep trying iRacing cars from time to time to see if the tyre model has been made more informative. You can acclimatize to it but the actual driving is such a disappointment after the feeling of rF2, AMS2, AC, ACC, even GTR2 and Race 07.
Yes, agree. I'll go back to it once they make some substantial improvements to the actual driving. Although I will check out the dirt changes, I do enjoy the dirt series occasionally. But not enough to pay a monthly sub.
 
Looking forward to giving the update a good go.

I'm hoping the dirt physics update will come to the RallyX and pro trucks soon.
 
I much prefer the old Time Attack method, there's too little choice in this new format. Completely spoiled SP mode for me tbh, a bit gutted...

:(
 
Hey, I made the front page!!

For anyone interested, this season's #PlaidPorsche is live and will be updated throughout the rest of this season at this link:

 
I keep trying iRacing cars from time to time to see if the tyre model has been made more informative. You can acclimatize to it but the actual driving is such a disappointment after the feeling of rF2, AMS2, AC, ACC, even GTR2 and Race 07.
I'm really not sure you can say AC there when it has an atrocious tire model
 
in terms of foliage, the biggest vegetation issue i have is with the trees if anything, i could not care less about gras or small bushes, but trees are way more visible while driving so i think they need to be addressed at some point.
 
Premium
in terms of foliage, the biggest vegetation issue i have is with the trees if anything, i could not care less about gras or small bushes, but trees are way more visible while driving so i think they need to be addressed at some point.
yeah I took a look at Willow Springs, and was not that impressed. It's ok, but not much better than the free AC mod.
 
I really liked the new graphics at Willow. The small shrubs make it much more enjoyable and realistic to me. The highlight is definitely the cadillac though. Love that car.

Loading times are improved quite a bit for me as well, which is nice.
 

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