The Thrustmaster T-GT is a steering wheel that's been officially licensed for Gran Turismo, which is a pretty big deal, and here lies the main attraction; it's been calibrated and optimised for use with one game, Gran Turismo Sport. Naturally, it still works with games like Assetto Corsa and Project CARS 2, but there should be no doubt that Thrustmaster's latest wheel works best with the game it's been designed for.
We have to say early on, though, that to buy a wheel and pedal for a cost of £700 is a rather bizarre premise for most players, let alone the fact that this is optimised for the one game. If you were to ask us, however, we'd say that this is a combination you'll want to experience if you're a racing fanatic, as the two products work incredibly well together. We'd say it's worth the ticket price to be able to enjoy the best Gran Turismo Sport experience money can buy, even if it is a hefty price to pay.
Even if the Fanatec CSL Elite PS4 is a better wheel that comes with a superior wheelbase than that of the T-GT, it simply doesn't work as well with Polyphony Digital's latest title, and while we do want to criticise Thrustmaster over the value proposition, it's difficult to do so after having experienced this combination over the last month or so. Very difficult.
T-GT is basically made up of parts of the Thrustmaster T300RS (a wheel we enjoyed and scored 8/10 a couple of years ago), with a few important differences. To begin with, the brushless motor is more powerful and this becomes immediately apparent as soon as you hit the tarmac in GT Sport. This wheel is capable of offering far more realistic force feedback, which works wonders for the silky smooth racing in Gran Turismo Sport.
It's a belt drive wheel too, and no direct drive creation as was rumoured prior to release. Apart from the centre section of the wheel that comes across as a bit cheap, the wheel is well crafted and gives off a luxurious air, and this is due in part to the leather on the wheel, which is of a very high quality and has a great feel to it, even if we prefer Alcantara for a better grip. It should be noted that real leather lasts longer and is a more expensive material, which may explain the price bump.
One of the new features that has been a focus with this product is "depth feedback", which is created via a speaker at the bottom of the wheelbase and reminds us of Simvibe, although it works automatically in GT Sport and doesn't require additional peripherals. This feature makes the wheel vibrate slightly as you hit the curbs (in addition to what the force feedback feature takes care of), and we truly adore it. In fact, we like it so much that we intend to invest in a Simvibe rig for our Clubsport wheel on PC, where we spend most of our time on a heavily modded version of Assetto Corsa.
The wheel houses twelve buttons plus a d-pad and two analog sticks, which makes it incredibly easy to snap pics in GT Sport's photo mode or set up liveries. If you compare this with how it works with the CSL Elite PS4 it's night and day, even if Fanatec allows for the option of replacing the buttons on the face of the wheel.
The one thing that doesn't measure up here are the pedals, as while they feel capable once the resistance in the brake pedal is right and the accelerator is well calibrated, they still feel cheap. We would also like to have seen a larger wheel, as 28 cm comes across as tiny when Fanatec has been delivering 30 cm wheels for some time now. Apparently, it was a request from Yamauchi and Polyphony to make it that size.
If you intend to spend a lot of time with Gran Turismo Sport then we'd have no problems recommending the T-GT to you. Thrustmaster has never built a better wheelbase, and even if the pedals feel cheap the whole package works so incredibly well with Sony's latest racing game that we can't do anything but wholeheartedly praise it. It's the best way to enjoy Gran Turismo Sport, even if the price point may make you wince.