To sim racing novices, the name Fanatec is in the upper echelons of the sim racing brands with the likes of Logitech and Thrustmaster. Unless you are one of those racers that play competitively, one may look into brands such as Simagic and Simucube as these are priced more than RM5,000, just for the motor and without the wheel. However, Fanatec is one of those brands that offer direct-drive wheels that cost less than RM5,000 as a complete unit.
They are also the same brand used for F1’s ESports Series as Fanatec has been producing gorgeous wheels such as their own Clubsport Formula (which resembles a Formula One-style wheel) to even wheels such as the NASCAR, WRC, Porsche 911 GT3 R and the McLaren GT3 for the CSL Elite. Despite Fanatec making wheels that are basically usable replicas of the real steering found in race cars, never have they made a wheel that can actually be used on an actual race car until this one.
This is what Fanatec came up with when the boys at Bentley called them up for a wheel for their Continental GT3 Pikes Peak race car which will be competing this weekend. If you look closely, the wheel is rather similar to Fanatec’s own Formula wheel except with the additional touch of a LCD display right in the center. The display will provide the driver with relevant information such as telemetry and adjustment of force feedback.
Did We Mention You Can Put This Wheel On A Rig?
Surrounding the screen are several switches and rotary dials which racers will be able to configure in any way they want. The two 7-way FunkySwitch directional sticks with encoder functionality, aluminum thumb wheels with optical encoders, and four magnetic paddles. The wheel is made together by a combination of forged carbon, aluminium and magnesium. Though it may be overkill as this will be mostly be bought by people who have extreme rigs, it’s still an actual Bentley product at the end of the day.
Thomas Jackermeier, CEO of Fanatec parent company Endor AG said: “This is the most advanced wheel we’ve ever made, and it will be used in a car which is simply stunning and the definition of cool. We had the honor of making an iconic wheel for an iconic car to race at the legendary Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, and our customers can be part of it and drive the exact same wheel in a simulator.”
For now, nothing about the price or the availability of units is shared by Fanatec. Though we suspect it won’t be cheap nor will it be flooding the market. The wheel seems more appropriate as a unique display piece on a wall rather than on a rig in my opinion. However, if you are a millionaire with money to spend and interested in this piece of motorsports, you can technically buy a Bentley Continental GT3 race car and get the Fanatec wheel for free.
Written by | Danial Malek
Images by | Fanatec