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Sim Racing Product Guides » Best Fanatec Wheel Rim For Each Discipline – Rally, Formula, GT
The Fanatec ecosystem is one of the best within the whole of sim racing. Fanatec have multiple product ranges to suit sim racers with different budgets. Within these product ranges sit a wide range of steering wheel rim.
The best part is, most of the wheel rims that Fanatec produce are compatible with every wheel base and every product range. This gives buyers a wide amount of options when configuring their sim rig setup. It also allows sim racers who already own a Fanatec product to upgrade their wheel base, and carry on using any peripherals they already own.
Due to the sheer amount of different wheel rim options, it can be tricky to find the best wheel rim to suit your own requirements. You may be a sim racer who primarily drives rally cars, or you might focus entirely on formula style cars. Sim racers who race in these different disciplines will generally be looking to buy a different style of wheel rim. After all, a Formula 1 style wheel rim definitely isn’t well suited to racing a windy rally stage.
To solve this problem, we will show you our recommendations for which Fanatec wheel is the best for various sim racing scenarios.
When it comes to rally driving, most sim racers will want a perfectly spherical wheel which will allow them to throw to wheel about. One of the very Fanatec wheels, and one of the most commonly purchased is the BMW GT2 race wheel. It is reasonably priced compared to a lot of the other wheel rims, features a spherical GT design with real Alcantara. It really ticks all of the boxes to be the best Fanatec wheel for rally.
The main downside of this wheel rim are its paddle shifters. The built in shifters feel a little cheap and we would have liked them to feel clunkier and more mechanical. Although when it comes to rally racing this doesn’t impact the experience too much. We always look to drive DIRT Rally 2.0 with a Fanatec handbrake and sequential shifter module, meaning the paddle shifters rarely get used.
For those who primarily drive formula style cars such as Formula 1 cars in F1 2019 / 2020 there is really only one option. The Fanatec Formula V2 is the perfect choice for those who want this style of wheel rim. There are other Fanatec formula style wheel rims for sale, including the original ClubSport Formula rim, and the F1 Esports officially licensed rim.
The original ClubSport Formula Carbon is a very good wheel rim, and is available at a cheaper price than the Formula V2. However the price difference between this wheel rim and the newer Formula V2 is reasonably small. This means that we would always bite the small bullet and pay a little extra for the much improved Formula V2 every time.
The F1 Esports wheel rim is the cheapest of the three formula style rims, and you can see why as soon as you see it. The wheel rim itself is rather basic and features only a few face buttons. Compared to the Formula V2, this officially licensed Esports wheel rim lacks in almost every department. If, however, you are looking for a decent formula style wheel rim on a budget then the Esports wheel rim will do a perfectly good job.
We also tested the fantastic, yet discontinued CSL Elite McLaren GT3 CSQR wheel rim. This was a staple wheel rim for many sim racers before the new formula wheel rims became available, and we can see why. It is a fantastically proportioned wheel rim, slightly larger and heavier than the Formula V2.
Many sim racers actually say that the Formula V2 wheel rim is too small. During our testing, we found the Formula V2 to be just right in terms of size. It is also a lighter wheel rim than many other Fanatec rims, possibly due to its small carbon fibre form and design. This allows the wheel rim to come alive, sending a lot of force feedback through the rim itself.
All in all, we couldn’t recommend the Formula V2 rim enough, especially if you are looking for the best Fanatec formula wheel for sale.
When it comes to GT racing, there are two absolutely fantastic options that we would look at. Of course, being Fanatec, there are many more than just two options. If you can stretch your budget you can look at the new flagship Porsche 911 GT3 R wheels. This wheel rim comes in a wide range of styles, and has the best functionality of most wheel rims available. However this wheel rim is so expensive that we wouldn’t actually recommend buying it.
Instead, our two recommendations are the Porsche 918 RSR, and the BMW GT2 wheel rims. These two wheel rims are very well proportioned for almost all styles of sim racing, and are some of the most popular Fanatec wheels available. Many sim racers start their journey with the BMW GT2, and most couldn’t recommend it enough.
We would however opt for the Porsche 918 RSR wheel rim if we had the choice of the two. It is more expensive than the BMW GT2, however the build quality and feel of the rim justifies this price increase. It is finished in a high quality leather, and uses both carbon fibre and race grade aluminium in its construction.
Our area of note is the improved paddle shifters. Most GT cars feature paddle shifters, so using these will be common place among sim racers. The overall feel of the shifters on the Porsche 918 RSR are much improved compared to the BMW GT2, which is the main downfall of the BMW GT2 wheel.
When it comes to drifting, you will want to opt for a larger deep dish wheel rim, and it turns out that Fanatec produce a wheel rim perfect for the job. The ClubSport Steering Wheel Drift was made for this job and performs extremely well. It features a traditional deep dish wheel design with a simplistic aluminium finish to the central hub.
This drift wheel rim comes bundled with the Fanatec Universal Hub making it a perfect addition to any sim racers collection. The Universal Hub gives you full customisation for how the wheel buttons are setup, including how many buttons you use. It will also allow you to connect other Fanatec wheel rims, increasing the range of compatible wheel rims.
We would highly recommend purchasing this wheel along with the Fanatec ClubSport Handbrake V1.5 for a truly authentic drifting experience.
When it comes to choosing the best Fanatec wheel for a specific console, you can sometimes feel limited to only a certain set of console specific wheel rims. Fanatec console compatibility is primarily driven by the wheel rim, meaning the compatibility of your wheel base changes depending on whether you connect a PS4 or Xbox compatible wheel rim.
One way to open up your console compatibility to the entire Fanatec product range is to install a Universal Hub. The Fanatec Universal Hub, when connected to either the CSL Elite or ClubSport wheel base allows you to connect any wheel rim, regardless of console compatibility, and it will then work on any console.
We would highly recommend purchasing the Universal Hub, which in turn will the allow you to use any of the suggested wheel rims above, depending on your primary race discipline. The only downside here is the cost of the Universal Hub itself. The price of the Universal Hub is just as expensive as most wheel rims, which can be a hard cost to swallow.
If you know you will only use your Fanatec wheel with one console, you can delve in to purchasing a console specific wheel rim and forget about purchasing the additional Universal Hub.
In this case, we would recommend the best Fanatec wheel for Xbox, which in our opinion is the ClubSport Steering Wheel GT Xbox One. This wheel rim comes in a few variations, including leather or Alcantara finishes. Our pick of the bunch is the flat bottom suede version. It feels nice in the hand, almost feeling like real Alcantara, and has a good proportion. It also comes with the Universal Hub, which in turn allows you to use other wheel rims in the future.
We would once again recommend purchasing a Universal Hub for PS4, which will allow you to connect any wheel rim to your console. However if you are looking for one pick of the bunch PS4 wheel, you wont get much better than the Porsche 918 RSR wheel. We have already recommended this wheel rim in our best GT style rim, so it comes as no surprise why it is our best Fanatec PS4 rim for sale.
If you are looking to jump in to the Fanatec ecosystem without breaking the bank, there is one wheel rim we would recommend. The CSL Elite Steering Wheel P1 is the cheapest wheel rim you can purchase from Fanatec. This doesn’t reflect on its quality however, as this wheel rim is just as well manufactured and designed as other Fanatec rims.
The CSL P1 is primarily designed for Xbox consoles, however paired with a PS4 compatible wheel base will work across all consoles. It features a perfectly spherical design, allowing it to be used for a wide range of sim racing disciplines. And comes finished in genuine Alcantara. The rev lights on the wheel itself are a great addition, especially if used with a ClubSport wheel base, as the CS wheel base doesn’t feature built in rev lights.
Our absolute favourite Fanatec wheel rim, if we had to choose one, would be the Porsche 918 RSR. It is a stunning wheel rim and great for racing across all disciplines.
The best formula wheel for sale is definitely the Formula V2. This wheel rim is the closest to a real Formula 1 car you can own, and really immerses you.
The decision between Fanatec and Thrustmaster comes doen to which ecosystem you want to invest in. Fanatec does have a wider range of products, and the build quality across all ranges is outstanding.
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