The Average Gamer

Thrustmaster T300 Ferrari GTE Wheel Review

Thrustmaster T300 GTE Ferrari
I’ve spent the past couple of weeks racing about with a T300 Force Feedback Wheel. It’s great. Ridiculously powerful to the point that it attempted to rip itself off my desk multiple times during DiRT Rally yet with such lovely control that even I could make proper turns in Euro Truck Simulator 2 (ETS2).

The kit I was sent to try out came with two wheels – its original Ferrari wheel and the Thrustmaster VG TM Leather 28 GT Wheel Add-On. Right away I could tell that, well, one felt leathery with stitching and the other felt like it was covered in synthetic rubber. Which they were. Nice, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Thrustmaster 28 VG TM Leather 28 GT Wheel Add-On and T300 Ferrari GTE

More importantly, the button placements are within easy reach of your thumbs, with some nice, solid feedback when you push them. Not annoyingly clicky but you know when you’ve hit them. The gear paddles however, are clicky. This is also good.

What’s not so good is that the buttons are all referred to by number in the software, with no matching labels on the wheel itself. I realise this is probably standard fare with a racing wheel, but for your first one, it can get pretty tedious trying to work out which of the many, blank options is “Button 6” when trying to progress through a game’s menu.

If I were keeping the wheel, I’d be all over that with a label maker but alas, this was to be sent on to other reviewers. And yes, I realise that the average racing wheel newbie is probably not going to opt for a £300 wheel plus an leather-covered add-on costing a further £140. Doesn’t make it any less frustrating when blindly flipping back and forth through menus.

The T300 GTE is a 1080° wheel, which is fabulous when you’re driving a large, unwieldy truck around the streets of Europe. Less useful when trying to whip a rally car through gravel, but you can reduce the available rotation and just about everything else you can think of, through the software downloadable from Thrustmaster’s support website.

The clamp is awkward as hell to use. I’ve been told that this is also fairly standard with racing wheels. My desk has a metal bar running along the front – fairly standard for office desks – which prevents the clamp from actually reaching the table. Instead, the plastic presses against the bar, leaving it vulnerable to damage, as pictured.

Thrustmaster T300 Ferrari GTE Clamp Table

Not using the clamp is simply not an option, thanks to the powerful force feedback and the heavy weight of the servomotor that powers it. Instead, my solution was to grab a couple of nearby notebooks and clamp them to the desk with the motor.

Thrustmaster T300 Ferrari GTE Clamp Books

This works great for ETS2 where all you want is a bit of rattling when you drift onto the rumble strips or smack into a barrier. It’s not so good on DiRT Rally where you can actively be fighting the wheel for control and, as previously mentioned, wind up dragging it and the books across the desk. A friend of mine has nailed a plank to the underside of his desk. That works, should you have that sort of desk. If you’re thinking of using this for a casual PS4 or PS3 race on the living room sofa, I’d think again. It really needs a solid cockpit, stand or table to keep it in position.

The base kit comes with two fully-adjustable metal pedals. Both feel great, with enough resistance to maintain control. If you’re looking for a gearbox shifter, you’ll have to buy it separately and the same goes for a three-pedal set, all of which are available (and pricey).

The T300 is a serious wheel for serious racers. The force feedback is excellent on both casual road driving and serious rallying. With the many tweaks you can make between the Thurstmaster control panel and in-game settings, it will be a great bit of kit for any gamer willing to invest some serious cash.

The Thrustmaster T300 Ferrari GTE Force Feedback wheel and Thrustmaster VG TM Leather 28 GT Wheel Add-On are available now.