The high specific strength of the magnesium alloy makes it a valuable choice for automotive, aerospace and sporting industries, where the weight reduction is a critical consideration in design. However, wrought magnesium alloys offer a poor formability at room temperature and a hot working condition is required for the forming process. This paper studies the application of finite element methods for the simulation of the forging of magnesium alloys. Numerical analysis of the forging process of an automotive magnesium wheel is conducted based on the tested flow curve of AZ80. The effect of friction on the final deformation of the upsetting of magnesium billets is also discussed.