In amongst the many announcements made at last week’s Copper Box blow-out of Gran Turismo Sport, Thrustmaster made a quiet reveal of their own on the show floor, showing off a new wheel coming in the future that will presumably be the official steering wheel of GT Sport.
The wheel itself looks to be a very high-entry accessory, boasting a slick and smooth matte look on the rim. Chrome knobs at the corners of the wheel interior appear to act as redundant PS4 face buttons – indicated by the outline of colour on each knob. The base is naturally curved with the design completed with a small vent on either side. Whether this serves a purpose or not can’t be determined at this point, but given how expensive the whole package looks, it may not be surprising to suggest there may be some sort of cooling mechanism in the wheel.
The aesthetics of the accessory look to be loosely based on GT5’s official wheel – The Driving Force GT – complete with the GT logo emblazoned (larger than ever…) in the centre of the rim. The paddle-shifters on the rear look very unique, not following the form of any Thrustmaster wheel to date with a floating effect, while the shifters themselves coming across rigid and edgy in design.
Kazunori Yamauchi talked to GTPlanet about the wheel giving some interesting insights. Firstly, Yamauchi makes note that this wheel will be ‘Direct Drive’ – meaning that the motor shaft is directly linked to the wheel itself without the use of belts and gears. A main positive in Kazunori’s eyes for this is that “It generates high torque from the motor, and the torque is stable.”. The stability of the torque is something Polyphony found important, pointing out that there are no wheels currently on the market that have a linear torque pattern, which is something the new GT Sport wheel will look to include.
“I always felt with other wheels that something was wrong – that something was off. When we actually used the torque meter to measure the torque on those other steering wheels, there were some that had a high peak but would then drop off – they would only give the torque in spikes. So we went and redesigned it so that the torque delivery is linear.
Even when you play with the wheel for hours at a time, the torque delivery will remain stable.”
“Balance and Precision” is what to expect from this wheel when it hits stores. Currently, there is no release window but one could assume we will see this wheel launch within the same window as GT Sport itself.