It's Christmas time, and Sony is delivering a very nice gift, brightly wrapped and packaged with a sweet Gran Turismo bow attached.

Beginning December 24, a free demo of Gran Turismo 5 will hit the PlayStation Store, and good ol' Famitsu already has some details on what we can expect from Gran Turismo HD Concept . This demo will feature one course – the brand new Eiger Nordwand, which you can race normal or reverse – and ten cars:

You're forced to start off with Cappuccino, but if you can manage to clear the Time Attack mode, you can unlock the next car, and so on and so forth. Eventually, you'll unlock a drift trial mode, which is a new addition to the franchise. And speaking of new additions, you probably noticed the inclusion of a Ferrari up there…yes indeed, another great super-car license for Gran Turismo .

Famitsu also featured an interview with game creator Kazunori Yamauchi, and he talked about how the demo came to exist, and what Polyphony's plans are for 2007. One of the questions posed during the interview involved the removal of Gran Turismo HD from the retail release charts. The question, of course, was "why?" Well, Yamauchi re-emphasized a team focus on Gran Turismo 5 and said that, after the Tokyo Game Show, it was clear fans were mostly interested in a new full game.

As for how GT5 and GTHD relate, Yamauchi says they plan to implement both the Premium and Classic versions of the now-defunct GTHD into GT 5. And as far as downloadable content is concerned, Yamauchi says they haven't reached any decisions on the matter.

As for the demo itself, he did make one very exciting announcement- it will include Polyphony's vaunted new driving simulation engine. From what we've heard, this engine really enhances certain areas of the driving experience, such as drift control and drift angle. There won't be any online functionality in this demo, but it should offer network rankings. That way, you can log on and see how well you stack up against the world competition.

Of course, there will be downloadable content available for GT 5 when it's released. Yamauchi did guarantee a cool photo mode of some sort as one of those downloads, but he didn't say when it might be ready. He didn't volunteer a cemented release date for GT 5, either, but he did say he'd have all that news before the Tokyo Motor Show, which is on October 27, 2007.

That's a long ways off, but hey, we get an awesome demo to check out for this year, and that can't possibly be a bad thing…right?

Related Game(s): Gran Turismo 5

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