Thrustmaster’s New GT Sport Wheel to Include Direct-Drive Motor

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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.

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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.

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Comments (48)

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  1. biftizmo

    Nice one Kaz…we are worried about grafics and Deadlines….torque delivery? What is this a simulator? Good job someone’s thinking about that kind of important stuff… Or we would of never got this far…

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  2. gigio79

    Very nice wheel, it will be the replacement of the T500RS, so I believe that the cost be high.
    I am waiting for the pedal set, maybe is T3PA pro.

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  3. shoemaker

    It looks nice but if you get ffb fade like the T300 then dont bother, it is not worth the hefty price tag. Liquid cooling and this could be winner !

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    1. highlifeGT

      Did either of you actually read the article all the way through? the no fade part? And liquid cooled? What? I have a DD wheel capable of 20+Nm. You don’t need liquid to cool the servo even at open wheeler strength.

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    2. Johnnypenso

      Apparently you don’t need to read the article itself, just the title then straight to the comments…lol.

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  4. Jump_Ace

    Boo-yah! DD baby!

    Future Christmas present. Praise the Gods of Westeros, the old and the new!

    Jerome

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  5. highlifeGT

    AH! This is HUGE NEWS! I’ve got an OSW, but I’m STILL stoked for this, and you bet I’ll be using it for GT Sport.

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  6. WyldAnimal

    I bet the Price will be US 999.00 or Higher.
    With Direct Drive, you Don’t get any Torque Multiplication from Dual Belt or Gear Multipliers.
    So at a minimum, They will need to use a Motor with a Torque Output equivalent to the T500’s Torque multiplied Belt driven Wheel.
    That Means a Pricey $500 to $750 Servo Motor.
    Then add the Controller Board, and USB Interface, the Wheel…
    I can’t see how it could be sold for under $1K

    Compare it to the current PC based Direct drive wheels.
    They start in the $1500 range and go up from there…

    Not sure if that puts them out of the Gamer / Hobbyist price range which is about $500
    I would not spend $1000 on a Wheel for the PS4 or Xbox1

    Console based Racing has gone from moderately expensive to
    Overly expensive.

    $400 to $450 for the console
    $120 for the Game(s)
    $500 for the TV
    $600 for the VR headset
    $1K for the Wheel
    $200 for the Rig
    $200 for good sound bar / system

    Pushing $3,000

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    1. occasionalracer

      Yes, and conversely to have the same setup in the PC World you will replace the cost of your console with $1500 PC, increasing the cost by $1000. Also whatever $200 “good sound system” you are referring to would greatly interest me.

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    2. highlifeGT

      Thats alot of effort to speculate. Did you know the motor inside the Accuforce wheel is about 90$? just thought that’d put some needed counter perspective on your little rant.

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    3. tony noyola

      like anything vr, there will be very few people getting it, it will be for people with good paying jobs and no family. certainly not gamers/hobbyist, this will be for those of us willing to shell out a little extra money to have the latest offering in total immersion. if you think you can pick up a pc and do vr for less unfortunately i don’t see it. with a nice 40″+ monitor, headset, wheel, plus another $1200 for a computer that can run it without maxing out its capabilities… we’re entering a time where you pay to play the latest developments in gaming.

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  7. R1600Turbo

    Nice and all, but at the rumored $1k USD price point, I would rather put that kind of money into a real track car.

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    1. highlifeGT

      and where will the extra 5,000 – 30,000 per year in running costs for your “track car” come from? :/ There’s always one of your kind for every new piece of hardware unveiled.

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    2. Johnnypenso

      $1k gets you almost nowhere with a track car. $1k for sim racing peripherals gets you potentially thousands of hours of practice. Apples and kumquats.

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    3. Punknoodle

      Lol 1k gets you nowhere, trust me. That covers your brake pads and rotors, and maybe an oil change when required…

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    4. R1600Turbo

      I didn’t say you could go professional racing with $1k, but it’s a good start for someone that wants to get started with autocrossing or the like. Always gotta be people that blow things out of proportion which is not surprising.

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    5. R1600Turbo

      Not only that, but that’s just for the wheel. Add up all the other associated costs of sim racing and you could have a lot of fun in a real car. Just sayin’.

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    6. Johnnypenso

      Of course. Equating the fun and life expectancy of a high end sim racing peripheral to the enjoyment you’ll get by doing your brake pads, rotors and an oil change isn’t blowing things out of proportion at all.

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    1. Johnnypenso

      I’ll help you out and take it off your hands for $200. Will you ship to Canada?…lol.

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  8. celtiscorpion73

    After being treated like crap by Thrustmaster’s “customer Service” department after my last wheel broke, I couldn’t buy another product of theirs. I just hope none of you experience the same thing if you go with their products.

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  9. fowlkore

    I hope they sell the steering wheel by itself and would be compatible with the t500rs base.

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    1. Johnnypenso

      I don’t see why not. You can already buy the T300 base and they are really moving into this “ecosystem” style of marketing.

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    1. SavageEvil

      Ouch $1000 that is not mass market price for a console aimed peripheral, that costs more than PS VR which would have much more uses than a wheel on the same device. I think the breakthrough would allow a much lower asking price. Yeesh, I’d have to rethink priorities if I was going to plunk down that much on a console peripheral, that’s more expensive that 3 PS4’s simultaneously. Let’s hope you are wrong Johnny, it’s a bit beefy looking but at that price it just got ugly. Lol!

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    2. Master Weasel

      @Johnny: A console compatible wheel more expensive than the Fanatec CSW V2? That would be interesting.

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  10. Griffith500

    Looks tacky. Sounds interesting.

    I’ll still wait to see if PD support a wider range of older wheels on the sly, as they always have. There is nothing to stop them in the hardware, only their status as first party developers under SONY.

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    1. SavageEvil

      Knowing PD, they’ll want folks playing with whatever they have, just like GT5 supported some pretty ancient Logitech stuff. Shame on Logitech for not even going the extra mile on the G25/27, but PD should still have all their drivers for those wheel and only implementing them when GT Sport and GT 7 is loaded should be no problem for these guys. But I won’t hold my breath as in business things can get pretty unscrupulous when someone wants to force consumers into their alternative (logitech cutting a deal with Sony to ensure only their new stuff is allowed to run on PS4, cutting off the legacy stuff so PD would have to comply by default).
      I wonder will the wheel be detachable and support RIM swaps like other Thrustmasters? This would be a massive boon especially as it’s going to be USB so PC driving oh yessssss!!!!

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  11. SavageEvil

    I love technology especially when it moves ahead and manufacturing allows such wheels to actually appear at mass market prices. Direct Drive, boy this can only bode well for GT’s force feedback which I must say is always leading the pack as far as console FF goes. Will it have a H pattern shifter as well and pedals, I want my driving experience to always have those for the seemingly vintage car experience as no a days actual clutch and shifters are being tossed out in favor of F1 style paddle shifting. Those are great but I still enjoy rowing my gears :D because it feels involved.

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    1. TeamCZRRacing

      I think I see a port for a TH8A shifter on the bottom right-hand side there, though it’s also likely that that’s either the power cable or pedal assembly port.

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    2. Johnnypenso

      Likely the pedals will be sold separately as many buyers at this price point will have good pedals already.

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    3. occasionalracer

      I agree, this is amazing knowing that Thrustmaster have the capacity to mass produce, hopefully offering a competitive price over Simexperience’s Accuforce (which I’m pretty sure also outputs fully linear torque levels). That wheel already presents a decent price at $1500, however isn’t (yet) console compatible. If they can get this on the shelf for something like $799 I think it would be a pretty darn good investment.

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  12. Johnnypenso

    Sounds awesome. Can’t wait for some hands on reviews especially with some good Sims as a platform.

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    1. highlifeGT

      I’m stoked to see initial first impressions too. First lucky few to try this thing hopefully will know what they’re doing.

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