GT Academy Starts Today, Plus Expanded Gran Turismo 5 Features

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Round 1 of GT Academy, the ground-breaking competition that will turn one Gran Turismo 5 player into a professional race car driver, is now open!


If you haven’t heard about GT Academy, it’s an online competition within GT5 that takes the top 32 players in the United States, based on time trial events, to a national finals event where they will compete for one of 16 spots in the GT Academy boot camp. At the boot camp, the finalists’ strength, stamina, mental agility, and driving skills will be pushed to the limits and beyond. Only one champion will ultimately go on to train to become a professional race driver and compete in a real endurance race. This unique competition will be documented in a GT Academy reality show that will air on the SPEED channel and PlayStation Network.

Round 1 is now open and runs through January 23, 2011. To enter, register at the GT website, then compete in the three online GT Academy time trial events. Your best lap time for each track will be posted to the rankings. Keep practicing, and if you beat your previous best lap time, your new best lap time will be posted and possibly move you up in the rankings.


All players who enter and race will earn rewards just for participating. A piece of free exclusive digital content will be awarded each week for the five weeks of Round 1 to everyone who logs in and races GT Academy events. Content includes exclusive PS3 themes and an exclusive GT Academy racing suit for PlayStation HOME. Round 1 prizes will be awarded after the close of Round 1.

Prizes will also be awarded for the top 20 national leaders (combined lap time) as of the end of each of the five weeks during Round 1, ending on January 23, 2011. The top 20 will each receive a Gran Turismo poster, the top five will each receive a Logitech Driving Force GT steering controller (plus a poster for being in the top 20), and the number one player will receive a Playseat Revolution (Gran Turismo 5 Edition) racing seat (plus a Logitech Driving Force GT steering controller for being in the top 5 and a GT5 poster for being in the top 20). However, if you win one of the prizes, you will be ineligible to receive the same thing in later weeks. So even if the same person maintains that top spot through all five weeks, four other players will have a chance to win one of the weekly 1st place prizes.

At the end of Round 1, the top 128 players per region will each get a voucher for Gran Turismo (PSP) and move on to round 2. The top 16 winners per region at the end of Round 2 will each receive a Gran Turismo 5 Collector’s Edition. And the top eight winners per region in Round 3 win seats at the GT Academy National Finals event for a chance at joining the GT Academy boot camp, where the grand prize winner will be determined. For more information about how the tournament works, visit the official GT Academy FAQ.

And with the arrival of GT Academy, Gran Turismo 5 has received a sizable update to add more content and improve the overall gameplay experience. Here are some highlights to look forward to:

  • Seasonal Events
    The Seasonal Events area has been added to the main GT Life screen. From here you can participate in official online events that will be open for a limited time only. Each event has specific entry and race conditions, and completing events earns you rewards and experience points. Compete here to see how you stack up to the rest of the world on the global leaderboards in the time trials and drift trial events.
  • Online Race Rewards and Experience
    When you complete a race in the [Open Lobby] or [My Lounge], you will now gain rewards and experience.

    Even if you are focused more on playing online, you’ll still be able to gain rewards and levels that you need to progress in [GT Life].
  • Hot Car Dealer
    A new specialized dealership has also been added to the main GT Life screen, making it much easier to find popular and rare used cars compared to the standard Used Car Dealer.
  • Distance Driven and Number of Wins in Online Races
    Your total distance driven online, and the number of wins you achieve in Open Lobby and My Lounge will now add to your Profile and Garage stats.
  • Improved Rewards for Playing
    Earn increased rewards for winning races in both A-Spec and B-Spec mode through the end of January only. Now’s the perfect chance to rack up points, build up your garage, and get ahead in the game.

See you online in Gran Turismo 5!

Comments are closed.


3 Author Replies

  • Keeps getting better…Thank you

  • good luck to all!

  • Getting Gran Turismo 5 this month! can’t wait!

  • Awesome stuff….the seasonal events sound awesome. now can you give me more hours in a day so I can play longer?

  • OH! I totally forgot to sign up >.<

    Is there still time to do it today? :/ The site wont load!

    • Stephanie Yoshimoto

      Yes, GT Academy registration continues through January 23, 2011 at 12:00 EST, but suggest you register sooner than later to get those practice laps in (and get that free DLC!)

  • Whats the track/car combo for round one?

  • @6 Since its a Nissan GT5 academy i would assume you will get a 350Z.

  • @Santos21 I am going to assume the 370Z over a 350Z. But I agree that it will probably be a Z for round 1 and the GT-R for round 2. IIRC that is how the last GT Academy was set up.

  • I AM EXCITED ABOUT THIS. i just gotta do my practicing and events when my girl is not home. cause i really want this. she will kll me if she finds out im trying to enter these events.

  • my house was robbed sunday and this was taken too but rest assure im on my way out the door to get me some games again now and this is number 1, i had the collectors edition but still have those items so i will get a standard version this time, i believe in my region i will rock GT Accademy! Good Luck and Happy Holidays!

  • darn, some get all day to log fast times, ill only get a few hours…. Fiddle sticks

  • Of course they do a rewards increase while my PS3 is hundreds of miles away for the Holiday break. Oh well, all I really need is the Formula Gran Turismo which hopefully will make an appearance in this Hot Car Dealership.

    Happy to see rewards and experience online now though.

  • Good luck everyone. Win or loose, we all get free stuff :-). As if 1000 cars wasn’t enough, they are adding more. There is no better gaming value than GT5 right now. I’m glad I bought this game.

  • nice updates, can’t wait to get home :D

  • This is so awesome!!! Thank you so much Kazunori Yamauchi and GT5 Team at polyphony!! You guys make this game so awesome! you guys are genius!

  • Nice 1. Excellent update.
    I really wanted to back-up my GT5 save & now i can :P
    + 3 things that would make it even better would be –
    1. Get rid of random cars in the ‘Used Car Dealership’ shop & have a ‘FULL’ list of the Cars that GT5 has to offer.
    2. Get rid of ‘Auto save’ when you buy a car.
    + erm. . .
    3. Make ‘ALL’ cars Premium cars :D

  • Nice one.

    Is there going to be an update that makes me good enough to beat those Red Bull X-1 races. No need to update the game… just update me.

    Looking forward to the extra content though.

    I’d love to see Formula 1 and Nascar races launched in time with each race in the season. That would be amazing, to actually compete against real racers’ times.

  • Hello PlayStation and Polyphony people

    Can you make a way so that I can backup the save file or store it online…

    …I really want to upgrade my PS3 to a bigger hard disk, but people tell me that I’ll lose my data for GT5

  • Can you unlock the GT5 save system so I can play the game on either of my PS3’s. They are both installed in Media cabinets and are a pain to switch them.
    I’m happy your fixing some of these issues with the used car lots but it should not have been set up this way in the first place. One play test by a regular person would have pointed out these frustrating “features” and had this game fixed before release.

  • Hey… I’m reading through the updated feature list on GT5 and it says that we can now backup saves. Does that mean that if I buy a new PS3 I can back up all my data and use it on the new system?

    I just noticed the X1 is now called the X2010… hmmm

    Quick feature request. Would it be possible for all your friends race times for offline events to be shown when we browse tracks. I think it would really encourage competition if we could see exactly how many seconds our friends are beating us by.

  • I haven’t bought GT5 yet, but with the new software update, Does that mean I can chamge the misuc and race to my own MP3 music files? That happens to be an option I was hoping for in racing games, especially on GT5.

  • @chemerie

    Yes, you can play your own music in GT5, ModNation Racers, and Burnout Paradise… my three favourite racing games

  • HI,
    Am I Being Blind But Ive Registered But Cant Seem To Find The, GT Academy Track To Start Competing, Can Anyone Help?

  • Dear Sally

    I’ve looked at the update and it’s great.

    GT5 really is the gift that keeps on giving :)

    I’m sure it will keep on getting better as I know Polyphony strive for perfection.

    I was just wondering, how is the online dealership populated? Is it just a random selection? I wonder if it will ever be possible for us to buy and sell cars in a community dealership… set up a kind of GT economy, as it were.

  • Either the event got taken off or I can only race once while in the event. I was doing the first time trial, got out of the event after I finished. Then I tried to go back in. And it’s not there.

  • It’s U.S. only….

  • Hmmm… my last post seems to have disappeared.

    Hello Sally

    I just wanted to tell you guys that I’m really impressed with the updates that we’ve been getting on GT5.

    Polyphony, and their desire for perfection, are really taking care of their fans. GT5 is truly the gift that keeps on giving :)

    I know that PD will continue to add great features and that GT5 will evolve into something great.

    Also, I was wondering how the online dealership is populated. Is it a random selection? I hope that one day we can have a community dealership for buying and selling cars with other players. That would be interesting, and create a kind of GT5 economy. PD could even charge 50c (real money) per transaction… make a little money on the side… second thoughts, forget that last part

  • Woohoo! That’s wonderful news. Thanks. :)

  • You can now back up your GT5 save. I see you now get an option to start a race right after finishing it. No more exiting and going back in. That feature alone saves a lot of time if you want to do the same race over and over. Great update so far.

  • WooHoo! Time to put on my racing face. Look forward to it. Thanks!

  • Greatest Driving Game Ever.

    Graphics beyond anything ever seen before in a driving game
    Unbelievably perfect driving model
    Mind boggling huge set of features
    And constant support and upgrades from Polyphony

    No wonder this franchise has sold over 50 million copies.

    Thank you PD and Kazunori Yamauchi, you were subjected to the biggest smear campaign ever waged against a video game by the pathetic Xbox fans in the media and came out victorious and with class and self respect.

  • That was a huge suprising update, thank all, it is truly a gift.

  • The GT website link doesn’t work… is that just me?

  • after u race your trials, if u try to race he next and if it dont work just out to main menu then go back into GT so it puts you back online, must be a thing were the servers take u off to reduce unneeded load!

  • Sweet! I cant wait to get my laps in… Ive been practicing from day one!

  • Great update, thankfully the copy protection is now removed, the team seems to have streamlined the menus to avoid unnecesary load times and the introduction of money and XP finally gives us all an incentive to race online. Great work PD, keep this great support coming! :D

  • wooooooooo I am ready my bro got me the driving force gt wheel yesterday and I got that thing mastered Will be on today can’t wait KEEP IT UP GOOD WORK YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!

  • Absolutely loving the support for this game. Every time I log in it get better. It was already a great game. Keep up the work guys! Online rewards, exp, and leader boards were a must! Love the idea of special events!

  • Can PD patch auto-save during endurance event in next update, pretty please?? I’m too tired about 9 hours and 24 hours endurance events in A-spec and B-spec.

  • Has the full-customize transmission bug been fixed (the one that prevents you from changing the gear ratios manually)?

  • Great game update, and I am crazy excited about the academy.

  • Much appreciated update – good job!

  • what i can say?

    ps3: it does everything.

    gt5: again! it does everything in races.

    congrats sony playstation and polyphony digital.

  • Typical, so focused on their own country (USA) that they forget the rest of the world exists. Even if people from other countries can’t claim the prizes, they could at least maybe have some PSN prices for people like us. And we get screwed out of the exclusive DLC. I guess it is a good thing I have a US account for crap like this.

  • @45.. that does stink, this contest looks awesome.. but if the rest of the world wants to be involved everybody could create their own US account to gain access to the exclusive stuff! Maybe there will be a separate challenge for everyone else to compete in. I bet something will come soon :0 but there are a ton of gt5 fans here, also!

  • This Canadian was heartbroken today when he tried to register. Too bad for me, can’t even play the courses and get the dlc prizes or not.
    frowns all around

  • @47 Create a US PSN account, then u can at least get to race the courses and get the DLC. Hopefully a lvl0 player can enter, lol.

  • So we get more XP and Credits in GT5 now? I noticed the credits instantly but it’s harder to see XP gains since I generally just look at the progress bar and not the hard numbers.

  • This idea should have been delayed so that all of north America can join !!! I’m pretty sure some
    Canadiens can kick a$# too !!!

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