Logitech is finally getting serious about Sim Racing with a $1,000 direct-drive wheel

Logitech is finally getting serious about Sim Racing with a $1,000 direct-drive wheel

Image for article titled Logitech is finally getting serious about Sim Racing with a $1,000 direct-drive wheel

Image: Logitech

Early last year, I reviewed Logitech G923, an entry-level racing sim steering wheel and crankset. It was good, but not very innovative; Logitech has been producing the same flimsy gear and pedal force feedback systems for generations, dating back to the G25 wheel released in the mid-20s. The peripheral giant slowly watched companies like Thrustmaster and in particular Fanatec – two much smaller companies – jump in and dominate the market. Logitech didn’t seem to care about sim racing. They still could.

Introducing the Logitech G Pro steering wheel. It’s the first from the company to forgo spur or helical gears in favor of a direct drive system, as Fanatec popularized with the CSL DD – so it’s a big problem. Strangely, Logitech hadhas yet to officially announce the existence of the G Pro on Wednesday morningbut an official setup guide is currently live and unlisted on YouTubeas it is a product sheet on the company’s website. It appears to be in stock and shipping now, so it’s the real deal.

Credit: Logitech via YouTube

The G Pro’s specs look very competitive, at least on paper. Logitech’s direct-drive solution touts 11Nm of force. That’s considerably higher than the stock 5Nm and 8Nm of the CSL DD that gamers can access with the $150 Boost kit, which is essentially a glorified external power supply.

The base features tachometers and a small OLED display, while the shift paddles are magnetic and incorporate Hall effect sensors. They are underlined by lower paddles which can be mapped to the clutch. Logitech also offers a new set of G Pro pedals, equipped with a load cell on the brake. At the time of writing, the pedals do not appear to come complete with wheel and base, as with the company’s entry-level hardware.

Image for article titled Logitech is finally getting serious about Sim Racing with a $1,000 direct-drive wheel

Image: Logitech

The price for all of this is very high – even higher than a similar Fanatec rig would be. The G Pro wheel will set you back $1,000, while the pedals are $350. Compare this to the $700 Fanatec GT DD Pro Kit which includes pedals, but no load cell or clutch. The GT DD Pro also offers less than half the available torque of the G Pro unless you specify the aforementioned Boost kit.

Design-wise, I like the approach Logitech has taken here. I’ve always preferred the brand’s rim designs to the more realistic hardware that Fanatec aims for; these are ultimately video games after all, so having game-relevant controls, like face buttons, d-pads and analog sticks are useful in this context.

Image for article titled Logitech is finally getting serious about Sim Racing with a $1,000 direct-drive wheel

Image: Logitech

The G Pro has a metal center and spokes, with a pair of rotating dials and a stick on the left side. It’s just the right number of entries without overwhelm the player, where to watch idiot. The rim is connected via a quick release system, however it is not known if Logitech will offer alternative rims, such as Fanateit’s done — something to keep in mind for those who prefer different shaped wheels for different racing disciplines. As usual, customers can choose between an Xbox or PlayStation compatible configuration, and bother will work with PC.

I am very happy to familiarize myself with the new G Pro range. It’s a wonderful time in sim racing when several equipment manufacturers push each other to improve their games. The MSRP may be high, but anyone familiar with Logitech knows that the company’s products can often be found with solid discounts. Hopefully that will be the case here too.

Update at 12:49 p.m. ET: Logitech has since published a official press release advertising the G Pro steering wheel and pedals.

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