Gran Turismo 6 is now official as the hit franchise will be racing onto the PlayStation 3 later this year. Versions for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita have not been announced although we fully expect Polyphony Digital to bring the game to both platforms in time for the lucrative holiday buying season. Or perhaps they want to push DriveClub for the PS4 instead.

The latest iteration of the popular driving simulator will ship with all of the cars found in Gran Turismo 5 in addition to a bevy of newcomers. In total, there will be some 1,200 cars available when the game launches with more coming in regular intervals through DLC.

In addition to the auto selections, there will be 33 tracks available (with 71 layouts) when the game ships including Silverstone. Gran Turismo 6 marks the first time England's popular track will be playable in-game. Naturally, additional tracks will be added over time as well.

We are told there will be a heavy social aspect to Gran Turismo 6 - specifically, a second screen experience that smartphone and tablet users can enjoy while playing. As for graphics, there's a completely renewed rendering engine on board that will allow for vehicles that look much more life-like. Indeed, the title is expected to push the limits of the PlayStation 3.

Sony hasn't pegged an exact release date for the title outside of "this winter" but there is a bit of good news as PlayStation 3 owners will be able to download a demo in July.