11 Best Racing games for Mac in 2020

We pick our favorites, including free alternatives

By Steven Marx & Ric Molina| Updated Apr 16, 2020

The last time we tried to list the best racing games for Mac, we couldn’t even find ten different games, let alone ten good ones. But things sure have changed.

In just a few years, Feral Interactive delivered some of the finest racing games from Codemasters while indie developers have continued their steady supply of quality titles.

After testing and evaluating over 20 games, we came up with our top picks. But don’t worry, as we all have slightly different tastes in games, we made sure most styles and sub-genres were covered, ranging from crazy arcade racers to hardcore simulations.

In spite of their differences, they all have one thing in common: glowing reviews from professionals and gamers alike.

And if you feel like playing something entirely different, this resource has the 100 Best Mac games available today.

Game★ Best OverallBest GraphicsBest Value
GenreSimulationSimulationArcade
Release date201720172016
Metascore

86

89

76

Our rating★★★★★
Full Review
★★★★☆
Full Review
★★★★☆
Requirements

Low

High

Low

Check Price

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Last updated: April 16, 2020

Last updated close to 2 years ago, this guide was in need of love. This time around we:

  1. Added Horizon Chase Turbo
  2. Added Blaze Rush
  3. Added Grid Autosport
  4. Added Gravel

We also removed Grid 2, Asphalt 6 and Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, as most of them don’t even support the latest macOS version. We originally planned to add Descenders to our Top 3 but the lack of macOS Catalina support forced us to keep it in the Competition section.

A Focus on Mac Performance

Sometimes a great game on Windows can suffer from extremely poor MacOS performance, or even worse, a broken Mac version.

That’s why testing these games on Mac hardware is critical for us.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 2

In this list, you’ll only find games that are both great and have proper MacOS support. You can read all about how we test MacOS performance below.

 Our favorite Mac Racing games

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 3

DiRT Rally

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Feral Interactive

Metascore: 86

DiRT Rally is the successor to the fan-favourite DiRT 3, a game that we all loved but which suddenly became unavailable to purchase a few months ago. But as much as I loved DiRT 3, DiRT Rally is a better game in every way.

With sophisticated handling, risky gameplay, and great graphics, some call it the greatest rally game ever released and Codemasters’ finest game to date. Dirt Rally is nowhere near as serious as our runner-up, F1 2017, but is still damned entertaining. What makes Dirt Rally our top pick? It can be a challenging and precise simulation or a fun and casual racer; all you need to do is adjust the settings and assists to match your preferences.

Dirt Rally also sports gorgeous graphics with realistic cars competing at top speed in beautifully rendered snowy forests, deserts or plains. Some might argue F1 2017 can look slightly better, but it’s debatable. Both games look great.

DiRT Rally does have a noticeable advantage over F1 2017: this is a brilliant port that runs smoothly on a wide range of machines, including older Macs with integrated graphics. It even performed great on our 2013 13-inch MBP, which ran the game at a respectable 29.34 FPS.

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game on Medium Preset, Multisampling turned off, V-Sync turned off and 1280×800 resolution: DiRT_Rally_export

System Requirements: OS 10.13, 1.8 GHz Intel Core i3 Processor, 8 GB RAM, 1 GB Nvidia 650M / 2 GB AMD Radeon M290 / Intel HD 4000 graphics card or better, 48 GB hard drive space.

Dirt Rally Mac art
86 Metascore
The best-reviewed DiRT game in years, you can't go wrong with DiRT Rally. It both looks great and runs great on most Macs, including MacBooks!
$39.99

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 4

F1 2017

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Epic Games

Genre: Online Shooter

Metascore: 81

Hardcore racing fans, stop your search right here. F1 2017 is Codemasters’ latest Formula 1 game, and thanks to Feral Interactive’s efforts, it was released on Mac and Windows on the same day.

With its screaming V8 engines, chess-like strategy, and extreme handling, this is one of the most realistic Mac race games on this list. That realism makes it a challenging game indeed but put in the effort and the game pays you back with interest. The game also features every car and circuit from the official Formula 1 2017 season, a huge career mode, a new gameplay mode, invitational events, and basically everything a Formula 1 fan could ask for.

Choosing between F1 2017 and Dirt Rally was a tough call. F1 2017 is a superb game and the only reason Dirt Rally earned our first pick is because it appeals to a larger audience. While Dirt Rally can run on most Macs released since 2012, F1 2017 is a more demanding game. The game couldn’t even launch on our 2013 13-inch MBP and our 2016 13-inch MBP only managed 25 FPS. But you can’t really blame the game there. The only reason F1 2017 is so demanding is because it’s probably the best-looking game on this list.

PS: The fact F1 2017 runs better than the older F1 2013 is proof that Feral Interactive used dark magic on this game (or probably the excellent use of Metal 2).

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game using the Medium Detail Preset, V-Sync Interval set to 1, Anti-Aliasing set to TAA and 1280×800 resolution:The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 5

System Requirements: OS 10.12.5, 2 GHz Intel Core i5 Processor, 8 GB RAM, 2GB AMD R9 M290, 1.5 GB Intel Iris Pro 6200 graphics card or better, 36 GB hard drive space.

F1 2017 Mac art
81 Metascore
"F1 2017 is probably the best-looking racing game available on Mac. It's graphics are sophisticated and gorgeous, making it a very demanding game.
$49.99

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 6

Absolute Drift

Mac Release date: 2016

MacOS developer: FlippFly

Metascore: 76

If the main thing you like about racing is the drifting, Absolute Drift has you covered. A unique game in that drifting is all you do, Absolute Drift nonetheless gives you a variety of cars and challenges to keep things interesting. 

There are large open worlds where completing achievements opens up more of the world, as well as three challenge modes, Driftkhana, Drifting, & Mountain Drifting. With 34 levels in each challenge, six cars that drift in very different ways, and five of the aforementioned free-roaming areas with different themes such as an airport and a dockyard, you won’t run out of areas to explore and drift in any time soon.

With minimal system requirements and a beta build for macOS Catalina that seems to be working, Absolute Drift should run fine on most Macs out there, though a controller is essential. Most standard controllers seem to work, but as with other games, there are rare reports of certain controllers not working.

Expand to see if your Mac run it

System Requirements: 64-bit Systems only, OS 10.10, 2.2 GHz Dual Core Processor, 2 GB RAM, 512 MB graphics card or better, 350 MB hard drive space.

Also great

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 7

GRID: Autosport

Mac Release date: 2015

MacOS developer: Feral Interactive

Metascore: 81

Occupying a space somewhere between a racing sim and an arcade game, GRID Autosport excels at offering something for everyone, including everything if you so choose. From open-wheel to endurance, street racing and more, GRID Autosport allows you to live out your motorsport championship dreams.

 Featuring a huge career mode allowing you to mix and match your series and styles, GRID Autosport allows you to focus on your favorite type of races or attempt to conquer them all. Move from team to team and from teammates to opponents with other players as you attempt to win races and sponsors in order to upgrade your cars.

 GRID Autosport still looks and runs great, features single and online multiplayer, and has relatively modest system requirements. If you’re looking for one racing game to satisfy all your urges, GRID Autosport has what you’re looking for.

Expand to see if your Mac run it

System Requirements: OS 10.10, 1.8 GHz Intel Processor, 4 GB RAM, 512 MB AMD 5000 , Intel HD 4000 and NVIDIA 600 or better, 18 GB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 8

Road Redemption

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Epic Games

Genre: Online Shooter

Metascore: 81

Back in the good old days of pixelated gaming, there was one game to rule them all: Road Rash. It was violent and intense. It was glorious. But that was back in 1991 and we had to wait a long time until someone finally delivered a worthy successor: Road Redemption.

This action racing game is about leading your motorcycle gang on an epic journey across the country. By completing races, assassinations, and robberies, you’ll earn money and loot that you can use to upgrade your character, bike, and weapons. Road Redemption rounds things up with a fun multiplayer mode where you can either work with your friends or against them. Up to you.

For an old-school remaster, Road Redemption isn’t too shabby on the graphics department. The game looks good, even on medium settings, but that comes at a price. This is a relatively demanding game that can be taxing on older machines, especially models with integrated graphics.

During our tests, our 2013 13-inch MBP barely managed 27.1 FPS on Medium settings. If you have anything older than that, you may have to lower the settings a lot more.

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game using the “Good” Quality Preset, V-Sync turned off and 1280×800 resolution: Road_Redemption_export

System Requirements: 64-bit processorOS, 10.7, Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 4 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT or ATI Radeon HD 2600 Pro graphics card or better, 1 GB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 9

Horizon Chase Turbo

Mac Release date: 2018

MacOS developer: Aquiris Game Studio

Metascore: 76

Inspired by the racing games of the 1990s, Horizon Chase Turbo has won overwhelming praise for succeeding in recreating that thrill nearly perfectly. From the bright colors to the basic controls, to crashes that merely slow you down, Horizon Chase Turbo leaves behind the realism of modern games like F1 for old fashioned, arcade fun. 

 Horizon Chase Turbo supports up to 4 players in split-screen multiplayer, which is available across all game modes. The game also features an extensive single-player campaign. Overall you can unlock up to 31 cars and 109 tracks in 48 cities around the world, so you shouldn’t run out of content any time soon. 

 Horizon Chase Turbo features a soundtrack by Barry Leitch of Top Gear and Lotus Turbo Challenge fame, and modest system requirements. A controller is recommended, and while there are a few reports of problems, most standard controllers seem to work. There is currently a beta 64-bit build that is working on macOS Catalina.

Expand to see if your Mac run it

System Requirements: OS 10.11, 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 4 GB RAM, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or better, 500 MB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 10

Race The Sun

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Epic Games

Genre: Online Shooter

Metascore: 81

Race The Sun is a special kind of racer. Instead of facing opponents in head-to-head competitions, you’ll race your solar-powered craft against the sun.

The sun is your death timer because as it sets, power turns off and you’re done. The sun will eventually set, but you can delay the inevitable by furiously avoiding obstacles and catching speed boosts to reverse the setting sun – at least for a moment. The game features simple controls that allow you to focus on the basics: flying at insane speeds for as long as possible.

The game features a procedural world that changes every day, challenges to gain XP, customization options for your ship, and an ultra-hard world called Apocalypse. Also of note are the sleek yet simple graphics.

Everything is geometrical with few if any textures, resulting in a game with very low system requirements. In fact, all three of our test machines hit 60 FPS (the game is locked to a maximum of 60 FPS). If you have an aging MacBook that can’t seem to run anything anymore, Race The Sun could be the game for you.

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game using the Good Quality Preset and 1280×800 resolution: Race_The_Sun_export

System Requirements: OS 10.7, Dual Core Processor, 2 GB RAM, SM2.0 graphics card or better, 150 MB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 11

Distance

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Epic Games

Genre: Online Shooter

Metascore: 81

Distance is an arcade racer filled with insane tracks and flying cars. The drool-worthy futuristic graphics alone would make the game worth it, but the gameplay is even better.

Cars can use parkour-style stunts to get through laser fields, spike attacks and more. You can also drive upside down, on buildings, walls and even fly to discover shortcuts. With online multiplayer for up to 12 players and split-screen, Distance promises hours of fun. And there’s also a short Adventure mode to help you learn the basics and round things up for solo players. Although it’s still in development, you can buy the Steam Early Access version. S

ometimes Early Access games are rough around the ages and have performance issues, especially on Mac and Linux, which are clearly not the developers’ priority. This is not the case with Distance. The game runs great on MacOS and playing the game on Medium settings was nice and smooth. Even our 2013 13-inch MBP did a reasonably smooth 27.8 FPS.

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game using the Medium Texture Quality, Draw Distance and Shadow Quality, Partial Anisotropic Filtering, Depth of Field off, Particles On and 1280×800 resolution: Distance_export

System Requirements: OS 10.7, 2.3 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, 4 GB RAM, NVIDIA Geforce 640M or ATI Radeon HD 3870 graphics card or better, 5 GB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 12

BlazeRush

Mac Release date: 2014

MacOS developer: Targem Games

Metascore: 66

Looking for a combat racing game? Look no further than BlazeRush. An arcade racer with, as they say, “no health, no leveling, and no brakes!” Blaze Rush, like many games on this list, specializes in local, split-screen multiplayer, so gather your friends, choose your car, and let the mayhem begin.

BlazeRush also includes online multiplayer with up to eight people, sixteen cars to choose from, and dozens of tracks across three different arenas. Pick up weapons along the track, and be the first to race or shoot your way across the finish line. Another game with light system requirements, BlazeRush is not MacOS Catalina compatible.

Expand to see if your Mac run it

System Requirements: OS 10.7, 512 MB Video Card, Intel HD 3000, Intel HD 4000 or better.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 13

Gravel

Mac Release date: 2018

MacOS developer: Milestone 

Metascore: 62

If off-road racing is your thing, Gravel, as the name implies, is the game for you. An arcade racing sim purely for off-road racers, Gravel provides a large variety of races and tracks, although there are some complaints that the base game is limited for the price, with an emphasis on paid DLC. Furthermore, the DLC is Windows only, leaving Mac users with only the base game.

That said, Gravel still provides a variety of races across four different disciplines: Cross Country, Wild Rush, Stadium and Speed cross, and includes single and multiplayer. And while the style is more arcade than sim, you can tweak your cars’ settings to make for a more realistic, sim-like experience. 

Gravel looks great, but the good looks come at a price, as Gravel requires a Metal 2 capable Mac. For fans of offroad racing sims, Gravel is the best way to get down and dirty.

Expand to see if your Mac run it

System Requirements: Requires a 64-bit operating system, OS 10.13, Intel Core i5 Processor, 8 GB RAM, Metal 2 compatible graphics card with 4 GB Video RAM or better, 15 GB hard drive space.

The 11 Best Racing Games for Mac in 2020 14

AudioSurf 2

Mac Release date: 2017

MacOS developer: Epic Games

Genre: Online Shooter

Metascore: 81

Audiosurf 2 is unlike any other racing game you’ve played before. The sequel to Audiosurf, Audiosurf 2 is a rhythm game that focuses on music.

In fact, it uses your very own music library to create a unique experience. You will have to navigate it using your levitating vehicle while collecting blocks that appear in sync with the music. And as you get closer to a song’s biggest moments, the game adapts and throws new layers of strategy to challenge you. The game has over 500 player-created mods and skins on Steam Workshop, in-game leaderboards, enhanced graphics and the ability to search for music.

Audiosurf 2 also introduced a wakeboarding mode that lets you distort the songs, jump, and pull off tricks. If you’re into music or rhythm games, this one is just for you. Audiosurf 2 is a game that goes for stylish graphics instead of realism.

Because of this, AudioSurf 2 can look good while having low system requirements. Our 2013 13-inch MBP did 52.6 FPS on Medium settings, which means even older machines should be able to run this game without an issue.

Expand to see if your Mac run it
We tested the game using the Medium Graphics Level, Anti-Aliasing turned off, VSync turned off and 1280×800 resolution: AudioSurf_2_export

System Requirements: OS 10.10, Intel Dual Core Processor, 2 GB RAM, Intel HD3000 graphics card or better, 400 MB hard drive space.

The Competition + Free Racing games for Mac

We had a hard time limiting the greatest racing games to a Top 10 list. With so many fine games released each year, some had to be left out.

The games below are the ones that almost made it to our Top 10 but didn’t quite make the cut. These games are high-quality and fun and I would recommend them in a heartbeat which is why they deserve to be mentioned.

We have also included some decent free Mac racing games out. If you’re exclusively looking for free alternatives, these are worth checking out:

GamesGamesOur takeDemand LevelFree games only?
Descenders Mac art

Descenders

⚠️ Fairly Demanding
DescendersIf you’re looking for a downhill racing sim with shades of the Skate & Tony Hawk franchises, Descenders is for you. Beloved by actual downhill riders, Descenders features procedurally generated worlds and Multiplayer.

As you complete levels or objectives during levels you will unlock additional levels, tricks, and bike upgrades. Also included are a team system and leaderboards.

78

Metascore
Fairly DemandingNo
F1 2016 Mac art

F1 2016

⛔ Very Demanding
F1 2016F1 2016 is a fantastic formula 1 game that introduced the drama and vehicle development that goes on behind the scenes. Work with your agent, engineer, and team to develop your car in the deepest ever career experience.

For those looking for a slightly cheaper and/or less demanding experience than F1 2017.

82

Metascore
Very Demanding No
SpeedRunners Mac art

SpeedRunners

✅ Not demanding
SpeedRunnersCars may not be involved here, but this cut-throat multiplayer running game from tinyBuild Games is one of the best party games you'll ever play.

SpeedRunners pits 4 players against each other, locally and online.You can run, jump, swing around, and use weapons to knock opponents off-screen!

84

Metascore
Not demandingNo
Neon Drive Mac art

Neon Drive

✅ Not demanding
Neon DriveNeon Drive is a slick '80s inspired arcade racer set in beautiful retro-futuristic settings.

You'll race in cityscapes, ocean roads and even in exploding enemy spaceships. Neon Drive has it all.

NA

Metascore
Not demandingNo
CSR RACING Mac art

CSR RACING

✅ Not demanding
CSR RACINGCSR Racing is a simple drag racing game about winning races so you can upgrade your car or buy new ones. The controls are simple, as you only have to control the acceleration at the start of the race and then shift gears at the right time.

With limited controls, it can get boring quickly, but for a free game, CSR has unbelievably high production levels.

NA

Metascore
Not demandingYes
Guts And Glory Mac art

Guts And Glory

⚠️ Fairly Demanding
Guts And Gloryide your bicycle to the finish line while dodging spinning saw blades, deadly spikes, explosives, and more!

NA

Metascore
Fairly DemandingNo
Gods of Drifting Mac art

Gods of Drifting

✅ Not demanding
Gods of DriftingGods of Drifting is a nice break from the other games in this section. In Gods of Drifting, you have to master the art of drifting through curves to achieve the top times and earn points.

Again, this game doesn’t feature full-fledged racing, but gamers still agree this is a fun game to play (in spite of funky physics and OS crashes).

NA

Metascore
Not demandingYes
Garfield Kart Mac art

Garfield Kart

✅ Not demanding
Garfield KartJoin Garfield and friends in this kart racing game that isn't afraid of borrowing from Mario Kart, but does it well.

NA

Metascore
Not demandingNo
Little Racers STREET Mac art

Little Racers STREET

✅ Not demanding
Little Racers STREETLittle Racers STREET is a fun game that successfully combines top-down racing with street racing.

62

Metascore
Not demandingNo
Top Speed Mac art

Top Speed: Drag & Fast Racing

✅ Not demanding
Top Speed: Drag & Fast RacingSimilar to CSR, Top Speed is another drag racing game that limits gameplay to hitting the accelerator and shifting gears at the right time while you speed through a straight racetrack.

The gameplay is limited but the graphics are great and you can let your creativity flow through a ton of tuning and customization options.

NA

Metascore
Not demandingYes

Our Criteria

Games have a largely subjective aspect to them. You may love some games while I might prefer completely different ones. This is why we identified a set of criteria that every single one of our picks has to meet:

Native support: This should go without saying, but each and every one of the games mentioned here has to be officially supported on MacOS and does not require Bootcamp or Wine. We’ve seen too many Top Games for MacOS lists that feature Windows-only games…

MacOS performance: There’s a plethora of reliable Windows-PC reviews, guides, and videos on the internet. However, they never acknowledge MacOS gaming. This is why our focus is always on the Mac performance of the games listed here. We test every one of our picks on the following machines:

iMac (5K, 27-inch, Late 2014)

3.5 GHz Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, AMD Radeon R9 M290X (2GB)

MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2013)

2.4 GHz Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, Intel Iris 5100 (1.5GB)

MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016):

2.0 GHz Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, Intel Iris Graphics 540 (1.5GB)

All games are tested on Medium settings because we know Mac users hang onto their computers for a long time and aren’t always upgrading to the latest and greatest hardware. These are all the results from our tests in Frames per Second (FPS):

Game 2014 27-inch iMac 2016 13-inch MBP 2013 13-inch MBP
DiRT Rally 115.4 FPS 53.9 FPS 29.3 FPS
GRID 2 79.84 FPS 30.88 FPS 27.46 FPS
F1 2017 59 FPS 25 FPS 0 FPS
Sonic All-Star Racing 60 FPS 51.6 FPS 39.3 FPS
Distance 148.9 FPS 54.2 FPS 27.9 FPS
AudioSurf 2 214.3 FPS 114.6 FPS 52.6 FPS
Asphalt 6 60 FPS 60 FPS 60 FPS
Road Redemption 103 FPS 52.3 FPS 27.1 FPS
Race The Sun 60 FPS 60 FPS 60 FPS
FlatOut 2 60 FPS 60 FPS 53.5 FPS

Best racing games for Mac results And for reference, this is how we interpret the results:

Below 20 FPS Unplayable Laggy gameplay, full of stutters and slowdowns.
20-30 FPS Borderline Can be Ok in slow paced games. Still, not optimal.
30-45 FPS Playable Acceptable for most (most gaming consoles do this).
45-60 FPS Smooth Fluid gameplay, with no perceivable stutters.
60+ FPS Very Smooth For hardcore and professional players, a luxury for most.

We usually aim for 30 FPS, because 30 FPS is enough to guarantee a smooth and fluid experience. FPS comparator

 

A word about controllers: Some genres are meant to be played with a mouse and controller (like any good first-person shooter), but racing games are not. For these tests, we used either a PS4 controller or a wired Xbox 360 controller. If you’re more serious than that, you can check Feral Interactive’s support page for detailed lists of supported steering wheels (for their games).

Critical acclaim: Video games can be subjective, but to keep this guide as relevant as possible, we only consider proven games with positive reviews from both professional reviewers and average gamers.

Pricing: We all want quality, but pricing also plays an important role. We always keep in mind price tags and production value to give indies and AAA games equal chances. After all, we’re after games that are fun to play. Looks are important but fun gameplay is even more so.

Wrapping Up

If you’re into racing games, you’re in luck. There is no other genre with as many great games that support macOS. Whether you’re a hardcore fan with a pedal and steering wheel setup or a casual gamer who likes the occasional arcade racer, this list provides quality games to meet your needs.

So next time someone tells you there are no good racing games, just point them to this list and get back to the starting line. Which one is your favorite? Did we miss any you think belong on this list? Let us know in the comments section.

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission (this is how we pay the bills).