We've known the Thunder from Down Under was making its way to the U.S. for some time now, but today dates for the V8 Supercars series race at Austin's Circuit of the Americas have been officially announced. It's getting real, folks.

Clear your calendars for May 17-19, 2013, as that's when the V8-powered, door-bashing, a-whole-lot-like-NASCAR-turned-road-racing Aussie series will be making its way to the U.S.

"The series features great competition from a wonderfully colorful collection of teams and drivers, who enhance their on-track action with great personalities and storylines," said COTA president Steve Sexton.

Indeed. Personalities as big as and drivers as fast as well-known NASCAR driver Marcos Ambrose, who once raced in the V8 Supercars series, taking the series championship in 2003 and 2004.

Tickets for the race start at $69 for general admission, with three-day reserved seating from $83-275--everyman prices for an everyman series.

For an unforgettable take on what V8 Supercars are really like, translated through the eyes of a meat-and-potatoes American NASCAR man (Darrell Waltrip), check out the video above, featuring a ridealong with Jason Bright in a V8 Supercar at Mount Panorama in 2011.