Fanatec Racing Wheels: The Ultimate 2024 Buyer’s Guide

As an avid sim racer, I’ve had the chance to test drive just about every Fanatec racing wheel and accessory on the market. In this detailed buyer’s guide, I’ll be breaking down Fanatec’s extensive lineup of wheel bases and steering wheels to help you find the right setup for your needs and budget. Whether you’re just getting started in sim racing or looking to upgrade to a high-end direct drive wheel, Fanatec has you covered. Let’s take a closer look at what they have to offer!

Fanatec Wheel Bases

The wheel base is the force feedback motor that brings your virtual driving experience to life. Fanatec is best known for their direct drive bases that provide unmatched realism and detail through instant and lossless force feedback. They currently offer three tiers of direct drive bases.

Budget Option – CSL DD

The CSL DD reshaped the sim racing landscape by making direct drive technology attainable for far more users. It’s available in 5Nm and 8Nm torque configurations, priced at €349.95 and €499.95 respectively.


  • Affordable entry point into direct drive wheels
  • Smooth, strong and detailed force feedback
  • 5Nm model can work on desk or table clamp
  • 8Nm version recommended for rig mounting
  • Fully modular with all Fanatec wheels & accessories


  • Lower peak torque than higher tier options
  • Must purchase wheel rim separately
  • Long order backlogs due to high demand

Even the “entry level” 5Nm model is a massive upgrade from gear driven wheels like the Logitech G29. For those wanting more power, the 8Nm boost kit offers a noticeable bump in torque for just €150 more. The CSL DD provides an unbeatable mix of performance and value. It’s the perfect way to start your journey into direct drive sim racing.

Mid-Range Option – Podium DD1

With 20Nm of peak torque and a maximum rotation angle of 2520°, the €1199 Podium DD1 slots in nicely between the CSL DD and DD2. The DD1 can tackle just about any racing scenario while keeping costs lower than the flagship DD2 model.


  • Excellent mid-tier direct drive option
  • 2520° rotation range adds versatility
  • 20Nm torque for strong and nuanced feedback
  • Advanced electronics and telemetry features


  • Requires rigid rig mounting to handle full 20Nm
  • Slightly outdated compared to DD2
  • Forces can overwhelm on lightweight rigs

Sim racers wanting more torque than the 8Nm CSL DD will find the Podium DD1 to be the ideal next step up. It’s powerful enough to satisfy while avoiding the ultra-high costs of the DD2. Just be sure your rig can handle the forces or it will become a shaker rig!

Top of the Line – Podium DD2

Fanatec’s cutting edge DD2 direct drive wheel base sets the new benchmark with a mammoth 25Nm of peak torque output. It’s built from the ground up for precision engineering and extreme performance. Expect to pay a premium for such pro level hardware – the DD2 retails for €1499.95.


  • Best-in-class 25Nm peak torque
  • Silky smooth, highly detailed force feedback
  • 5 year warranty for peace of mind
  • Extreme performance for the most demanding racers


  • High price tag, not exactly a bargain
  • Designed for rock solid rigs only
  • Overkill torque for casual racers

The DD2 is the choice for competitors and perfectionists who want the absolute best performance no matter the cost. If you have a full motion rig built like a tank, the DD2 will reward you with the most uncompromising and realistic force feedback ever felt in a sim racing wheel base.

Fanatec Steering Wheels

Now that we’ve covered the wheel base options, let’s explore Fanatec’s extensive selection of steering wheel rims. Your wheel rim has a big influence on the overall driving experience, so it’s worth investing in a quality model tailored to your preferred racing disciplines.

Entry Level – McLaren GT3 V2

The McLaren GT3 V2 is one of the most affordable steering wheel options from Fanatec, yet it still carries an air of luxury. With an attractive design modeled after McLaren’s GT3 car, this wheel provides great bang for buck.


  • Low price point only €179.95
  • Striking GT3 style design
  • Good starter wheel for direct drive bases
  • Wide assortment of buttons and rotaries


  • Mostly plastic construction
  • Materials less durable than higher priced wheels
  • Can flex with very high forces

Even with its limitations, the GT3 V2 wheel is a fantastic way to compliment a budget direct drive setup like the 5Nm CSL DD. You get an authentic, feature-packed steering wheel without breaking the bank. It’s easily recommended if you’re just looking to get started with higher end gear.

Enthusiast – ClubSport Formula V2.5

Sim racers seeking a versatile, highly adjustable wheel should look no further than the ClubSport Formula V2.5. Fanatec packed this wheel with all kinds of rotaries, encoders, switches and buttons to give you total control over in-game functions and settings.


  • Extremely adjustable with tons of inputs
  • Multi-position switches for added flexibility
  • Materials feel high-end and durable
  • Metal quick release included


  • High level of complexity out of the box
  • Formula shape limits max rotation
  • €349.95 price tag

The ClubSport Formula V2.5 is an ideal partner for direct drive bases like the 8Nm CSL DD or DD1. With all of the toggles and switches at your fingertips, you can fully customize the driving experience and dial in settings for each car. It’s especially handy for open wheel and prototype style vehicles with sophisticated adjustability.

High-End – Podium BMW GT3

Licensed by BMW Motorsport as an exact replica of their real world GT3 steering wheel, the Podium BMW GT3 is in a league of its own. It takes sim racing immersion to the next level by meeting actual FIA standards for BMW’s GT3 car. Prepare for sticker shock though – this wheel costs a whopping €1499.95.


  • Real world replication of BMW GT3 wheel
  • Materials and quality match the real car
  • Fully adjustable paddle shifters
  • OLED display with multiple telemetry options


  • Exorbitant price tag, costing as much as a wheel base
  • Primarily suited for GT style racing
  • Limited availability

The Podium BMW GT3 is the ultimate choice for diehard BMW and GT racing fans with money to spare. While absurdly expensive, nothing else comes close to providing this level of accuracy and immersion. The ability to use an actual GT3 racing wheel just like the pros is tough to put a price on for some.


Hopefully this guide has given you a comprehensive overview of Fanatec’s racing wheel ecosystem. Their direct drive bases and steering wheel lineups cater to everyone from rookie sim racers to real world professionals. Here are my quick recommendations on optimal pairings at each budget level:

Entry Level: CSL DD 5Nm + McLaren GT3 V2

Enthusiast: CSL DD 8Nm + ClubSport Formula V2.5

High-End: Podium DD1 + Podium BMW GT3

Of course you can mix and match across the product stacks as you see fit. The beauty of the Fanatec system is the modular upgrades and wide array of options. Spend where it counts for your needs. Invest in a quality direct drive base first, then complement it with a steering wheel suited to your driving style.

I hope this guide has helped narrow down the choices within Fanatec’s sea of parts and accessories. Let me know in the comments if you have any other questions! I’ll be around to offer advice from my own experience testing these great products. Now get out there, make your selections, and take your racing immersion to the next level!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Fanatec’s warranty and return policy?

Fanatec offers a 2 year warranty on most wheel bases and 1 year on steering wheels and other components. You can return products in new condition within 14 days of delivery.

How difficult is it to switch wheels with Fanatec products?

It’s quite easy thanks to Fanatec’s quick release system. Just detach the wheel, re-attach another, and you’re good to go in seconds.

Do I need special adapters for Xbox or PlayStation?

Fanatec wheels labeled “for Xbox” or “PlayStation Compatible” will work on those systems out of the box. Some bases may require an additional adapter.

Should I start with the CSL DD or go straight to a higher model?

The CSL DD is powerful enough for most, so start there. Upgrade later on if you crave more torque. Jumping past the DD1 may be overkill.

What wheels work best with rally or drifting?

Look for round style rims around 300mm size. Formula style wheels can make high angle drifting and rally tricky.

Is it difficult to mount Fanatec wheels to different rigs?

Fanatec uses a simple bolt-on mounting pattern that works great on most cockpits. Some adapters may be needed depending on your rig.

How often does Fanatec release new products?

Fanatec regularly refreshes their product lineup with new wheel bases, rims, and accessories. Check their website for the latest offerings.

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