While Grand Theft Auto fans have waited a decade for a new entry in the best-selling franchise, we have been waiting nearly as long for the next Mario Kart. Nintendo gave Mario Kart 8 a new lease on life when it released Mario Kart 8 Deluxe in 2017, which is now the best-selling Switch game of all time. But even with dozens of additional courses and characters, it’s still the same game, which is why a new Mario Kart X leak is now making waves.
According to Nintendo insider Zippo (via ComicBook.com), who has a pretty spotty track record, the next Mario Kart is coming in 2025 for the Switch 2. This will be the tenth Mario Kart — Mario Kart Tour on mobile was the ninth. As such, it will be called Mario Kart X.
Zippo claims Mario Kart X is being developed by Nintendo EPD Production Group No. 9, which also led the development of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. Bandai Namco Studios is reportedly on board for this one as well. Interestingly, Bandai Namco revealed Studio 2 and Studio S — an internal studio established to co-develop Nintendo games — just days after Zippo’s report.
Bandai Namco has previously worked on a wide variety of Nintendo first-party games, including Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Mario Kart Tour, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and ARMS. It really sounds like the developer is in this partnership for the long haul.
“Additionally, Nintendo are sparring absolutely no expense with this game,” Zippo added in the new blog post. “This is apparently one of the most expensive games Nintendo has ever put into production. The next 3D Mario title is said to be “absolutely [jaw?] dropping” and this apparently looks even better. The game’s visual fidelity is said to be a very high priority for them, meaning the game is gonna look good, damn good.”
The tipster also claims that Nintendo will be going all out for the 40th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. in 2025. While Mario Kart X might be the highlight of 2025, Zippo says we should “expect a lot of plumber goodness not just next year, but even more the year after.”
It’s certainly worth taking this with a grain of salt, but it’s hard to imagine that Nintendo hasn’t at least started work on the next mainline Mario Kart. Personally, I’m a Mario Kart Tour apologist, but even I can admit that it doesn’t compare to the console titles.