The title was unveiled on June 13, 2016, with a demo was released on September 12th, 2016. It was released on September 27, 2016 in North America and Europe for Xbox One and Windows 10, making it the second title after Forza Motorsport 6: Apex to launch on the PC platform. It was released in Japan on September 29, 2016.
Players with digital copies automatically purchase the title for both, Xbox One and Windows 10, and may transfer progress between both platforms through the Xbox Play Anywhere feature.
Forza Horizon 3 is set in a fictional setting of Southern Australia known as Horizon Australia and brings along several new features to the franchise including Drivatar lineups and custom Horizon Blueprint player events.
The Deluxe Edition release contains a VIP membership and the Motorsports All-Stars Car Pack. The Ultimate Edition release comes with all benefits from the Deluxe Edition along with the Car Pass and early access play starting on September 23, 2016.
The Australian Tour Edition was only available through Australian video game retailer EB Games and included a steelbook, t-shirt with the locations names of the title, and four pre-order bonus cars.
- Drivatars may be recruited in a Drivatar Lineup that grants players additional credits and fans for completing racing events. It is also possible to create Convoys made up of Drivatars encountered in freeroam mode.
- Players may drive onto rivers and beaches but will be respawned onto soil when reaching out-of-bounds areas, that is driving into deep water.
- Players can create custom racing and Bucket List events by accessing the Horizon Blueprint.
- Players can purchase gameplay perks and career bonuses by spending points earned from skill chains in the Skill Shop.
- The Drone Mode perk unlocks an additional viewing mode that gives players control of a drone.
- Every radio station will occasionally play a Skill Song that increases the player's skill chain multiplier for the length of the song.
- Horizon Edition cars contain permanent perks that grant players skill point multipliers and additional rewards for racing events
- Upgrade Heroes category cars may be fitted with wide bodykits and are available with upgrade presets that will immediately apply a set of upgrades to the player's car upon purchase.
- Players can customize their horn sounds and license plates.
- Players can purchase cars from other players through the Auction House which was previously available for Xbox 360 titles of the series.
- Forza Horizon 3 is the first Horizon title to feature ForzaVista, a vehicle exploration mode from Forza Motorsport 5 and Forza Motorsport 6.
- The title's campaign can be completed in a four-player co-op session.
- The Groove Music Radio Station allows players to import custom soundtracks from Groove Music and OneDrive.
- Main article: Forza Horizon 3/Forzathon
- Main article: Forza Horizon 3/Cars
- Main article: Forza Horizon 3/Downloadable Content
- Main article: Forza Horizon 3/Update history
- Horizon Australia
- Horizon Online
- Horizon Wheelspin
- Photo Mode
- Rivals Mode
- Forza Horizon 3 features the song The Trials from the first-person shooter game Halo 5: Guardians, making it the first title in the series to license a song from another title.
- Forza Horizon 3 is the only title in the series to lack Volkswagen vehicles due to licensing issues.