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Thrustmaster is a household brand for sim racers for a very good reason. If you don’t want to enter the perilous and expensive world of direct drive wheels, which is currently ruled by Fanatec, then Thrustmaster offers the best quality steering wheels on the market. It’s for this reason that we’ve decided to rank their best five wheels you can purchase in 2020.
The Top-Rated Thrustmaster Wheels for Racing Sims
|Top Pick||Thrustmaster T300RS||90%|
|Runner Up||Thrustmaster TX-RW||87%|
|Luxury Pick||Thrustmaster T-GT||94%|
|Budget Pick||Thrustmaster T150||85%|
|Best Value||Thrustmaster TMX Pro||89%|
|Honorable Mention||Thrustmaster TS-XW||90%|
Top Pick: Thrustmaster T300RS
The fact that this is an older wheel shouldn’t turn you off, instead, it speaks of just how much thought and prescience Thrustmaster had when creating this jewel.
The Thrustmaster T300RS might not be the newest wheel on the market, but it’s still one of the best ones available overall. Yes, not just Thrustmaster, but overall. We can’t but start by mentioning how stylish this wheel is. Being a licensed Ferrari product, Thrustmaster decided to take the wheel you’d find in a Ferrari 599xx EVO and make an 8:10 replica. It’s stunning, sturdy and it feels oh so nice to be able to drive while looking at the brand when thinking of motorsports. But style isn’t where the T300RS stops. This jewel is worthy of the Ferrari name till the very end. A brushless motor outputs incredible and silent force feedback. You’ll feel the game through your wheel, and you’ll hear the engine roar from the television screen. The rotation range is an almost excessive 1080°, and they will feel smooth from the slightest turn, to the most violent and last-minute aggressive overtake.
As an added bonus the cost, though certainly not cheap, is fair for a wheel of this calibre, so you know you have a pretty good bang for your buck. The wheel also comes with a set of included pedals, but this fantastic wheel deserves much better! Unfortunately, this wheel is Playstation and PC exclusive (though it works with the PS3!)
Runner-Up: Thrustmaster TX-RW
It’s more expensive than the T300RS, and maybe it doesn’t reach the same heights, but as a bundle, you really can’t beat the TX-RW
You could perhaps say that the Thrustmaster TX-RW is akin to the Xbox version of the T300RS, but that wouldn’t be entirely correct. The TX-RW has a rotation range of 900°, which is still good, but not quite as much as the 1080° of the T300RS. It also lacks the Ferrari aesthetic and brand. Nevertheless, this leather wheel holds its own. It’s both comfortable and durable, and the genuine leather adds a lot to the immersion factor.
What’s positive about this wheel is that it has nigh indistinguishable force feedback when compared to the T300RS. You’ll get the same smooth, quiet, yet powerful drive that is the mecca of all racing sim pilots. It also does something slightly better than the T300RS, namely the pedals. They are a superior model in almost every way, being hardier, heftier and more precise.
What’s less positive about this wheel is the price, as it’s a relatively significant increase compared to the T300RS. All in all, you need to consider whether the pedals are enough to justify this increase in price for you.
Luxury Pick: Thrustmaster T-GT
The T-GT, though optimized for the Grand Turismo series, is some of the best engineering we’ve seen in a wheel full-stop.
The Thrustmaster T-GT promises only one thing when you first pick it up: once you’ve had a drive with it, you’ll have a hard time going back to any other wheel. We can tell you that this is (unfortunately for those who have tried this wheel but don’t own it) true. The T-GT makes use of T-DFB technology that reads Grand Turismo’s tracks and creates a three-dimensional perception of the environment. This means that the wheel is capable of reading every singular blade of grass, or irregularity in the asphalt, allowing you to feel exactly what your car would be in the moment. Not only is the T-DFB technology great, but the T-GT offers a 1:1 force feedback replica with what the simulator thinks ought to apply to you. This means that, if cranked up to the most precise settings, the T-GT will accurately model real lift racing conditions.
A handful of other notes: it has a great 1080° rotation range, the embedded motor cooling system can push the T-GT to new heights, the wheel looks and feels wonderful (real leather always adds that extra bit of realism needed) and it’s built to last.
The only negatives are the fact that (as you might have guessed from this being in the luxury pick option), it’s expensive. Moreover, the included pedal set doesn’t feel as though it’s quite as excellent as the rest of the wheel bundle.
A last word of caution: This wheel is not Xbox compatible.
Budget Pick: Thrustmaster T150
Whoever said that you need to spend a fortune for a quality product? The T150 exemplifies the heights that an entry-level wheel can promise.
Obviously, it’s not entirely fair to compare the Thrustmaster T150 to wheels which cost more than double its price but hear us out. Most entry-level wheels make use of a gear system to deliver force feedback, leading to it being notchy when turning. The T150 makes use of both that, as well as a belt system. This means that you’ll feel substantially fewer notches when turning compared to other entry-level wheels, but it supplements this smoothness with the power of the gear system. For the price the T150 goes for, this alone feels like it’s an immediate sell. When you also consider that it has a fantastic 1080° rotation range you can’t but be both impressed and satisfied! This is exactly why it beats out the Logitech G29, another popular entry-level wheel.
The T150 comes with a two pedalboard which doesn’t quite do racing sims justice but is a very welcome addition if this is your first ever pedal set and you plan on racing in F1 games exclusively (on account of the missing clutch pedal).
Best Value: Thrustmaster TMX Pro
The TMX Pro is not the highest end wheel available on the market, but it’s a great middle of the way wheel that is often discounted and comes with fantastic pedals.
If you’re looking for the best wheel which will, straight out of the box, have a very basic setup for you to enjoy a vast variety of racing games, then the Thrustmaster TMX Pro is your pick. Not to mention, it’s also our number one wheel for trucking.
The wheel makes use of a similar mix of belt and gear system as the T150, in order to make a fair compromise between power and smoothness. It has a slightly smaller rotation range (900°, still very good) but feels considerably more resistant and is a bit nicer than the T150. But the real reason why we think this is the best bang for your buck deal is the following:
The Thrustmaster TMX Pro comes bundled with the T3PA pedals. These are some of the best pedals in all of sim racing. They are precise, resistant, beautiful, long-lasting, accurate, immersive, comfortable, basically, all you could ever want from pedals! Not only this, but the TMX Pro bundle is often cheaper than the base TMX package, making it an absolute steal for those looking to have a basic but quality set-up ready to go in the blink of an eye with a single purchase!
Do be careful to look for the TMX Pro and not the base TMX though, as the latter has considerable worse pedals bundled in (and can often come at higher prices!)
Honorable Mention: Thrustmaster TS-XW
Though this could have made a great luxury pick, the TS-XW falls just short of the T-GT
The Thrustmaster TS-XW is undoubtedly a luxury pick. It can cost as much as a basic direct drive system (slightly less than Fanatec’s DD1 as an example). Having said that, it makes use of SPARCO’s fabulous materials and knowledge to create a 1:1 replica of the P310 competition wheel from the Italian manufacturer’s catalogue. It uses a dual pulley system and delivers powerful, precise and oh so smooth force feedback to the pilot thanks to a powerful servomotor that makes use of Thrustmaster’s proprietary Motor Cooling Embedded cooling system.
The Ts-XW Sparco P310 Competition Mod also has the T3PA pedal set included, which we extensively lauded both before, as well in our review of it. All in all, this is a great PC and Xbox product (no Playstation system compatibility) but it was simply too expensive for us to include it as our Luxury Pick when the T-GT offers such an incredible experience at slightly less than four-fifths of the price.
Last Updated on November 24, 2020