GT5’s New Thrustmaster T500 RS Wheel Goes Upmarket

Kazunori Yamauchi has continued to reveal interesting bits of information on Twitter about the new official Gran Turismo 5 steering wheel, the Thrustmaster T500 RS. Unlike the last “official” wheel, the Logitech Driving Force GT, it seems Polyphony Digital will now be endorsing a premium product which commands a considerably higher price tag. According to Yamauchi, the T500 RS will sell in the range $500 (keep reading…), with the separate gated shifter sold separately for a still undisclosed amount of money.

Before you grumble, keep in mind that it’s not clear if the $500 price actually refers to the US, EU, or Japanese regions. As noted by Shirakawa Akira in our forums, the Logitech G27 already sells for around $450 in Japan (it’s $299 in the US), so it may not actually be that much more expensive. Other “premium” wheels, such as the Fanatec Porsche 911 GT3 RS, sell for as much as $349.95, so there is clearly enough demand in the higher end of the market and it is very encouraging to see Polyphony Digital supporting enthusiast hardware with the T500.

Kazunori reinforced this notion with more tweets, stating that the “T500RS […] is a high-quality, premium steering [wheel],” and “you can feel the delicate and rich feel of the steering.” It will feature three pedals, a “high-power motor, belt drive backlash-free, [and] high-speed processing at low latency.”

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Comments (79)

  1. Peterjford

    The only experience I have had with Thrustmaster products is their joysticks from a long, long time ago. They were very accurate, comfortable, and well made. The only problem was programming them but that has been fixed. If this wheel is anything near the quality of their old joysticks it will be well worth the money.

  2. OmniusGT

    After using the Driving Force Pro with GT4 and upgrading to the Driving Force GT for GT5 (which didn’t arrive as we all know) so the wheel was used for Prologue and other driving games, its a shame to see Logitech ‘losing’ the GT licence…

    The question is, if this T500 is the new official wheel, why has the ‘on the fly’ extra buttons been dropped? The Plus and Minus buttons, scroll wheel and menu button? It seems strange that if you go for this wheel, you can’t do that anymore, you can tell this if you go into the options to configure the T500 in GT5, there is no option to configure any of the unused buttons for these Driving Force GT only buttons.

    Also looking at the T500, how would you attach it to a desk (I have my Driving Force GT clamped to my desk using the internal clamps) but I can’t see anything on the photos of this new wheel?

  3. Kyle

    I don’t possibly see how I could enjoy this wheel more than my G27. Especially for what will close on $600 for the shifter and base unit. Wow.

  4. J. Hayden-Kart Racer

    wow thats ridiculous! who would pay $500 for a wheel and then pay another $50-100 for a shifter? just get a g25/g27!

  5. Madman Apex

    I think that the reason PD and Kaz have teamed up with Thrustmaster is because the official wheel must be a better “fit” with GT5. GT5 is one hot horrible mess, alot of hype leading up to a big dissapointment. PD and Kaz figure the Thrustmaster T500-RS is going to be the same way. 500units of money from whatever region for a really dissappointing “standard” wheel with blocky shadows and no option to be racemoded.
    i cant hate on Kaz though because it is not my business who he sleeps with behind closed doors in the privacy of his home. but i hope he wasnt too busy or blinded by this hot new romance to miss seeing all the faults being released in GT5. i wouldnt be surprised all the cars on display at the madrid launch party where actually owned by him. i cant hate i can only be envious.
    i dont understand why people bought the G27/25 for GT5, and are now mad that it isnt working 100% with GT5. not that this is acceptable, but the DFGT was the “official” wheel for GT5.
    i see a lot of faults with this new wheel, a lack of buttons jump out at me first, but its the same for G27/25.
    i love my DF, DFP and DFGT as i still have all three and will continue to use DFGT for GT5, DFP for FIA GTR2 and RACE-07 and my DF is now resting in the hall of fame after clocking in more then 50,000kms on GT3

  6. Dme

    As much as I try to defend Polyphony and GT5 they keep doing things that really grind my gears. From delaying the game, to a really clunky menu system, to something as simple as not having fast foreword or rewind in replays. They continue to fumble.

    I bought a G27 a month before the scheduled Nov 2nd release of GT5, and it seems many followed suit as everystore that was selling them sold out as the date got closer when a few of my friends tried picking one up.

    Now I see they worked to tailor the game to a wheel thats not even available?

  7. Jack

    Sounds like a really stupid marketing move. the Logitech Driving Force GT goes for about $130, and designating it as “the official wheel of GT5” probably encouraged thousands of people to buy one. Nobody but the hardest of the hardcore are going to buy a $500 wheel to play video games with, so the endorsement is a complete waste of time.

  8. tyl0r_r

    And it’ll have the stupidest name for any gaming accessory I’ve ever considered owning. Thrustmaster 500 coming to a porn set near you.

    1. occasionalracer

      Since the gearbox is sold separately I’m sure it will be like the G’s an 911’s where the shifter isn’t fixed to the wheel.

  9. ghostrider135

    I wont be buying it i’ve bought thrustmaster peripherals before and funnily enough they all broke within a few months/weeks/hours and the bulid quality is on par with a shantytown

  10. robert

    Thanks Kaz, ive just wasted £85 on a steering wheel thats not the official 1 for GT5, im over the moon, I DONT THINK

    1. wrighton

      I have currently owned a DFGT for over a year now and its had quite a lot of hammer from playing Prologue, is it worth upgrading to a G25 or G27 because my DFGT is rather noisy now compared to one that’s new. I like the button support on the DFGT but I would like to know how much better the feedback from the wheel is on the G25 or G27.

    2. Paulo

      I have never owned a DFGT, I did have a DFP before getting G25, and I have found the playing experience to be better with the G25, along with quality.

  11. neema_t

    That H.E.A.R.T. logo and acronym really makes me feel like this is going to be a cheap, plasticky feeling affair with an unjustified high price tag. Belt drive? I’m not sure but do the Logitech wheels use belts? That doesn’t exactly fill me with confidence either, but time will tell I suppose. The shifter is separate too? Well, I think I’ll run my DFP into the ground (which will be soon, probably) and see how much G25’s go for…

    Of course, if this turns out to be the very, very best wheel ever made then I’ll eat my words, but my experience of Thrustmaster hasn’t been as positive as it has been with Logitech. I’m not sure how well this will do against the G25/27 seeing as those in the market for a wheel won’t mind sacrificing a little functionality and saving a lot of money.

  12. Benny44

    I had to save just to get my $95 DFGT, so I can’t possibly rationalize getting a wheel for $500. I don’t think my wife would appreciate it either. She was good enough to let me build a cockpit in the living room, I’m not going to push my luck any further.

    1. Paulo

      I hear ya bud… I had to explain to mine how long I’ve been waiting for GT5 so she could understand why I bought the more expensive collectors edition. Still don’t have a permanent setup for cockpit though, need to set it up every time I want to play.

  13. dearlybeloved

    It seems that this t500 wheel will be the most amazing piece of kit to play gt5 with and the demographic it is aiming for is the serious trackday guy who is into GT. Also for those with disposable income I would say it is going to be an amazingly built piece of kit. Looking at it it seems to have carbon fibre bits, anodized aluminium and whatever else a premium wheel has. Still way out of my league but for those who can afford it, you lucky sods.

    Peace out!

  14. Sgtwhitten

    I think I’d rather go on holiday than buy that wheel, a holiday might be cheaper too. I’m happy with my G25 purchased for a reasonable £125

  15. The-Only-Batman

    I find it funny reading the negative responses from people that haven’t even seen the product yet! Why not wait and then offer some constructive comments when you have had a chance to see it in action?

    1. Lischynski

      I find it funny reading the positive responses from people that haven’t even seen the product yet! Why not wait and then offer some de-constructive comments when you have had a chance to see it in action?

  16. riph

    better they use optical sensor for sick with old tech,obsolete G25 started to brake-sticking. :(

  17. SCUD77

    this wheel will be a huge fail. Why ? because the dfgt/g25/27 have gained the respect for being great performing well built wheels, what do thrustmaster have other than a pornstar-name ?

    1. speedthrill

      you’re right there my friend. All i know from thrustmaster is nerds trying to keep me away from it in high school. “Logitech Mate,the best joysticks, keyboards, mouses,…headsets,…”

      And now for me 6 years the best in wheels…
      And not only for gt5, but for Simbins games, i racing…
      God i’m glad i listened t the nerds back then…
      And yeah, name me one product thrustmaster made that went into history…

      Controllers (wich wheels fit into) are still the best in logitech hands and minds, whatever my dear god YK comes up with…

    2. occasionalracer

      I really like Logitech a lot, but it’s not impossible for Thrustmaster to do something good here, this thing is $500, so we better be getting a lot of product for that.

  18. Mr Latte

    Nice to read it will be a more “serious” product.

    Belt drive, contactless pedal sensors,mmmmmm
    I detect Thrustmaster have been following closely what Fanatec have done.

    G27 so missed the chance of a proper upgrade/improvement over the G25. It will be nice to see what Thrustmaster comes up with.

    1. occasionalracer

      You’re right it is a good thing that something new is hitting the market, and I’ve always wondered why there weren’t more wheel products out there. Logitech and Fanatec have enjoyed pretty exclusive market up until now, and this new wheel could breed better wheels in the future. Logitech screwed up big with their almost pointless G27 upgrade (no seq. on the shifter) and I think Fanatec could have done better marketing. For $500 with a GT brand, I’m sure this thing will be better than the G’s and 911’s, but it’s a bit of a fail they didn’t advertise this thing before the launch of GT5, cause I’m sure they’ve missed out on 1000’s of potential sales.

  19. Praggia

    I think Kaz should concentrate on sorting out GT5’s niggly issues…very irritating downright disappointing issues

  20. AengerdX

    If this wheel is as good as i hope in quality, as their HOTAS stick was awsome, then i´m giving away my g25 to a friend. :)

  21. mike3648

    Meh…I’m not well off, so I will stick with my Force GT thanks very much. Price of wheels is getting ridiculous-you could almost buy another PS3 AND a Force GT for the price of this wheel.

  22. Keyz13

    As long as the brake pedal is pressure sensitive, like the fanatec clubsport pedals, then this product will have a chance. Thrustmaster is an old, very reliable joystick company. Logitech made their way with “mice”and trackballs, so I don’t think it will be hard to dethrone their arrogant, non product supporting, reverse gear breaking asses.

    1. Jope

      Lolz @ “reverse gear breaking asses” :D

      Anywho, I’m in if this is true. There’s always room for yet another steering wheel in the market. Especially if it’s one sold in regular high street stores, and has proper customer support from the manufacturer.

    1. Keyz13

      Very Irresponsible to say you G27 was 149.99. I mean, when you got it from that guy who stole it of a truck, did he really give you a penny back when you gave him $150?

    2. Benny44

      you just have to keep your eyes open and be patient. I even saw one on amazon for that price about a year ago. Unfortunately for me I couldn’t afford it and it almost immediately went up in price. I’ve found that in the last year, wheels have gone up in price. (probably because of GT5)

    1. FlareKR

      Same here, my DFGT has been made GT5P so much more enjoyable when I got it last year. And with GT5, and the makes the experience so much better. And for $150, it’s a damn good deal. That $500 thing better come with a Coca-Cola dispenser.

    1. Circuit*star

      exactly my point. +1 and not even real cars Nardi, Momo, Personal, Omp etc racing steering wheel go for that much.

    2. Punknoodle

      yeah but a “real” steering wheel only has…the wheel. This has motors, electronics, mouldings, pedals etc. Can’t see how they are connected..?

    1. ToreDL87

      Agreed, I have huge expenses coming up soon due to rebuilding a race engine for my car, my G25 is already good enough for simulators like rFactor and I fail to see why it shouldnt be good enough for PD to include full support (Change gears while drifting, adjust sensivity, deadzones and buttons) for it in GT5 because of some agenda for a new wheel :S

  23. jodark

    Sorry, if they wanted me to buy their fancy wheel, they should have released it before the game so I didn’t invest in a G27 that I am very happy with.

  24. blue cat

    If this means PD are not gonna devote time towards proper G27 support then i’m gonna be such a hater towards this wheel!

    1. Keyz13

      The G25/27 support is already there, (no triangle needed to enable the clutch), but the extra buttons will be supported with the patches to come , from what I’ve read. Crap! I have a broken, no reverse gear G25, and it drives quite awesome on this game. Lets welcome some wheel competition!!! Better for us right?

    2. Murcie

      ^ Same here, rolling with a G25 and it’s pretty much perfect for my driving style as it is.

      The last steering wheel I bought that wasn’t a Logitech was a Mad Catz Puma GT some 10 years ago. It’s going to take one hell of a wheel to top the G25/7.

    3. Geo_212

      What he probably means is to have the ability to program the buttons to your own specifications. I really hate that I can only use TWO of the six buttons on my wheel, and two of the four buttons on the shifter module. What the heck? They really need to support the G25/G27 better.

  25. organ-donor

    I just bought a G27 a few months ago, hopefully this wheel won’t be much better and we will get full support for the G25/27.

    1. tvman

      When’s it for sale, i’m in. :) I’ve no wheel and can’t get a top of the line Fanatec or Logitech as they’re all sold out.

    2. Eric

      I almost bought a G27 but I hesitated missed getting it for $198. Now that this new wheel is arriving soon I going to look into this one.


      thrustmaster = nice looking but = bad VERY bad quality
      ican just hope for you that thrustmaster will make a wheel with a good quality because of PD/SONY

      i had 2 thrustmaster wheels and both had a very bad quality
      they look good and you think it’s good but they aren’t

      lets see …

    4. MrSkyline

      why am i getting the feeling the introduction of this wheel and not fully supporting other premium wheels is not a coincidence?

      this smells like a big pile of ****

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