Midnight Club Los Angeles tries to do something similar. The game is made by Rockstar (GTA's developer) so it uses the same graphics engine as GTA IV. Midnight Club takes the realistic open-world setting and the driving physics of GTA IV and makes it strictly a driving game. That's pretty much the best analogy GameZone can think of. If Burnout is an arcade racer and Gran Turismo is a realistic simulation, Midnight Club Los Angeles is stuck somewhere between the two.
MCLA's plot starts like many race themed movies have recently. You're a tough, east coast kid moving to the west coast try become the best underground racer. Every kid's dream, right? He meets a gang of underground racers and is invited to test his skills on the streets. Laughter ensues…