Thrustmaster has taken to social media to tease us with a new bit of sim-racing kit it’s bringing to market next year.
Staying true to the concept of teasing, Thrustmaster has provided almost no information on the new wheel. In fact about all we can say is that there’s a wheel involved in there somewhere, and it’s coming in 2021. There’s no further details at this time, and even the image showing the wheel is relatively small and heavily shaded:
— Thrustmaster Official (@TMThrustmaster) December 14, 2020
That all said, there’s a few things we can make out from the image. Firstly, it’s pretty clear that this is a formula-style wheel. We can see that the overall rectangular shape, and open side grips with no clear bottom, is pretty characteristic of these kinds of wheel.
Looking more closely, and messing around with the image levels, we can also see what appear to be thumb switches high up on the wheel sides, separate paddles for shifting gear (commonly two-action, push-pull paddles in F1 cars) and for the clutch. We can’t make out much other detail, though it does look like the wheel isn’t paired to a base, suggesting that it will be compatible with existing wheel bases rather than a new line.
This type of wheel is pretty unusual from Thrustmaster. Its current offerings are almost exclusively full circumference, GT-style wheels, with a notable exception: the Ferrari F1. That was a wheel Thrustmaster made under license from Ferrari, as a replica of the 2011 Ferrari F150 Formula One car’s wheel, though many of the dials on that item were cosmetic only.
Thrustmaster is still a sponsor of the Ferrari Hublot FDA Esports outfit, which races in F1 Esports. That could hint that this wheel will be a successor to the 2011 product, perhaps a replica of the 2020 season SF1000 F1 car’s wheel, or the upgraded version that will compete in 2021.
Either way, it’s something we can’t wait to see, and we’ll bring you more news as we get it.