If you’ve stepped foot near the sim racing community, you would have definitely heard about Fanatec. The company is known for its wide selection of sim racing products, from wheels to full-fledged cockpits.
Part of the reason Fanatec sim racing gear is so popular is because of the company’s bundle options. Since gamers can get the whole package in the same bundle, it saves them the hassle of buying separate components and compatibility issues.
But Fanatec sim racing bundle options aren’t the only reason for the company’s hype. Let’s look at the good, bad, and everything in between of Fanatec.
An Overview of Fanatech’s Sim Racing Technology
To understand where Fanatec stands today in the sim racing market, we must look at its history.
Thomas Jackermeier, an avid PC gamer, founded a company he called Endor in 1977. The company’s headquarters are in Landshut, Germany.
He quickly realized that the input devices play a huge role in the gaming reality and performance. Back in the 90s, there wasn’t enough choice in terms of quality devices.
Thomas recognized the need for better input devices and started developing his own.
After completing his studies, Thomas bought AB-Union, a company later renamed Endor Ltd. However, the company never sold its product under this name. Instead, the products were sold under FANATEC®.
One of the company’s first products was the “Le Mans” wheel for desktop gaming. Later, Fanatec introduced the “Speedster 2,” a wheel for PlayStation gaming.
Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) marketed this product worldwide, making it the PlayStation’s leading product.
Since then, Fanatec has not looked back. Over the years, the company has produced some of the top-performing sim racing gear, making it a popular choice amongst gamers.
In doing so, it has stuck to its mission of developing the ”best input devices for and in all product segments.”
Fanatec Gear Compatibility
Fanatec sim racing gear is compatible with gaming titles on the following platforms:
- Windows PC
Some popular gaming titles you can play on PlayStation 4 with Fanatec gear are:
- F1 2017
- F1 2018
- F1 2019
- F1 2020
- GRID (2019)
- Project CARS 2
- Project CARS 3
- Gran Turismo Sport
- NASCAR Heat 2
- NASCAR Heat 3
On Xbox, you can play the following games, among others:
- Assetto Corsa Competizione
- Assetto Corsa
- Dirt 4
- Dirt Rally
- Dirt Rally 2.0
- F1 2018
- F1 2019
- NASCAR HEAT 5
- Project CARS
- Forza Horizon 4
- Forza Motorsport 5
- Forza Motorsport 6
Here are some titles you can play on the PC:
- Assetto Corsa
- Project Cars2
- F1 2018
Fanatec Sim Racing Gear Products Overview
As we’ve already mentioned, Fanatec has a host of sim racing products. Instead of discussing every single one of them in detail, we’ll look at some top-selling options to make your decision-making process easier.
A wheelbase is the foundation of any sim racing setup. It’s what connects the wheel to your rig and provides force feedback to give you a realistic driving experience.
The Podium Wheelbase DD2 is one of the best options from Fanatec. Instead of an industrial motor, the wheelbase uses Fanatec’s custom motor for sim racing. Its Outrunner-type motor provides a torque of up to 25 Nm, which is equal to most real racing cars.
The rotation on this wheelbase is up to 2520 degrees, while the Advanced Tuning Menu lets you fine-tune force feedback settings to your liking.
Another option from Fanatec is the Podium Wheelbase DD1 QR2. Like the DD2, this wheelbase also uses Fanatec’s custom motor but with a slightly lower torque of 20 Nm. It also has the same Advanced Fine Turning Menu and rotation of 2520 degrees.
Fanatec Steering Wheels
Your sim racing setup is not complete without a high-quality steering wheel, and Fanatec offers some of the best options on the market. The Podium Steering Wheel BMW M4 GT3 stands out because it’s not a replica of the BMW M4 GT3 wheel, but is the exact wheel that is in the 2022 BMW M4 GT3 race car.
Fanatec claims that this is the first time the same wheel has been used in a real race car and a sim racing setup, providing gamers with the ultimate immersion.
Other features of this Fanatec sim racing wheel are:
- Carbon-fiber paddles
- 308 mm diameter
- 14 buttons, with 12 front-facing and 2 rear-facing
- Anti-reflective coating to reduce glare
- Dual-action (push/pull) magnetic shifters
If you’re looking for a Fanatec sim racing wheel for Xbox, the Clubsport Steering Wheel GT V2 is an excellent option. It has an aluminum build with a 330 mm diameter.
The suede leather grips and red stitching contribute to a premium look and feel on this Fanatec sim racing. Other features include:
- Paddle plate spacers for different wheel diameters
- 3 mm-thick paddle plates
- 16 integrated buttons
- 7-way FunkySwitch™ (left, right, up, and down directional inputs, rotary encoder functionality, and push button)
Fanatec Sim Cockpit
The Rennsport Cockpit V2 is the flagship Fanatec sim cockpit, and for good reason. It is made from high-quality aluminum profiles and has an adjustable steering wheel and pedal plate for maximum customization.
You can customize the Fanatec sim cockpit in a way that best suits your racing needs. The powder coat finish on the cockpit further gives it extra resistance.
It comes with all the tools you need for assembly. Plus, it’s compatible with most racing gear. As for compatibility, it works with all racing wheels and wheelbases from Fanatec. Plus, it’s compatible with the Logitech G25 / G27 and the Thrustmaster T500RS.
You can’t have a pro-level sim racing setup if high-quality pedals are missing. Fanatec offers a variety of options, from entry-level to advanced.
The Clubsport Pedals V3 has contactless and magnetic sensors that offer maximum performance. You can adjust the brake travel and stiffness easily without using any tools. The gas pedal is designed so that you can change the spring quickly. Two springs are included in the package.
Although on the pricier side, the Clubsport Pedals V3 Inverted is another popular option. These pedals have a unique inverted design with a 90 kg load cell sensor for the brake pedal. Like the V3, you can adjust the brake stiffness and travel in this pedal too.
Since it features CNC-machined aluminum construction, durability isn’t a concern. Also, the pedal plates have ultimate adjustability as you can set the direction, spring strength, angle, and throttle spring strength according to your preference.
Fanatec Shifters and Handbrakes
The Clubsport Handbrake V1.5 is a realistic replica of the handbrake used in rally and race cars. It is made of metal and has flexible mounting options on its three sides. The soft foam grip makes it comfortable to use the handbrake for extending racing periods.
As for shifters, the Clubsport SQ V1.5 shifter takes the top spot for its ultra-realistic performance and 7-gear H-Pattern mode. The haptic feedback makes the sequential mode quite realistic. You can switch between the H-Pattern and sequential mode based on your needs. There are mounting options on the bottom and four sides of the shifter.
Fanatec Sim Racing Bundle Options
The way a Fanatec sim racing bundle works is that you choose a product that’s eligible for ‘’bundling.’’ Such products have a ‘’bundle’’ label on them.
The Clubsport Wheel Rim GT Forza Motorsport is an example. Once you go to the product page, click the ‘’Add Accessories’’ drop-down menu and choose accessories. For example, the ones you can get for this wheel rim are:
- Clubsport Universal Hub V2
- Clubsport Universal Hub V2 for Xbox
- Podium Hub
- Podium Button Module Rally
- CSL Universal Hub V2
Who Is Fanatec Sim Racing Gear For?
If you’ve clicked on any of the above links, you’ll notice that the Fanatec products are on the higher end when it comes to pricing. So, they’re mostly suited for pro players or people who can afford to splurge on their sim racing setup.
The second group who might find Fanatec a good option for their sim racing gear shopping is people who want their whole setup from the same brand. You can get pretty much everything from Fanatec. Plus, the bundle options keep compatibility issues at bay.
Pros of Fanatec Sim Racing Gear
- Excellent compatibility
- High-quality materials used in construction
- Realistic force feedback
- A wide range of products to choose from
Cons of Fanatec Sim Racing Gear
- Quite expensive
- Long shipping times to the US
Final Verdict on Fanatec
Summing up, we’ll say that we’re highly impressed by Fanatec’s sim racing gear. The build quality is top-notch, and the product variety will have most racers spoilt for choice.
The product that fascinated us the most is the Podium Steering Wheel BMW M4 GT3, which is the exact same wheel in the real-life race car. In a racing gear market where most other manufacturers make replicas, Fanatec’s offering takes the cake.
On the downside, the price tag can be a dealbreaker for many people. But if you’re someone who wants the best of the best, Fanatec is worth considering.