Fanatec Podium DD2


  • Incredible 25Nm of torque for ultra realistic feedback
  • Super smooth and detailed force effects
  • Fully adjustable with extensive configuration software
  • High quality materials like cast aluminum and carbon fiber construction
  • OLED display shows telemetry and wheel settings
  • Huge ecosystem of compatible wheels and accessories
  • 5 year standard warranty


  • Very expensive – over $1500 for just the base
  • No included steering wheel further raises costs
  • Complex software can be overwhelming at first
  • Quick release mechanism is good but not flawless – new QR2 still not released
  • Weighty wheelbase requires extra care during installation

Fanatec Podium DD2 Direct Drive Wheelbase Review

The Fanatec Podium DD2 is the brand’s flagship direct drive wheelbase, offering uncompromising performance and incredible detail for dedicated sim racers. With up to 25Nm of torque on tap and a premium design packed with features, it provides a no-compromise experience for those seeking maximum immersion. But does the DD2 live up to the hype, and is it worth the hefty price tag? After extensive testing, I’m ready to share my full review.   


Direct drive wheelbases have become the gold standard for serious sim racers seeking ultimate realism. By eliminating the gears or belts found in cheaper options, direct drive delivers silky smooth, highly detailed force feedback critical for simulating subtle tire grip and weight transfer effects. The DD2 sits at the very top of Fanatec’s lineup as their most powerful and advanced offering. But with a price tag over $1500, it’s clearly aimed at dedicated enthusiasts willing to pay for premium performance. Let’s dive in and see if the DD2 can justify its elite reputation and cost.

Unboxing and Contents

Unboxing the DD2 is an event in itself. The packaging is extremely premium, with a slick black outer sleeve highlighting the product’s contours. Inside, the wheelbase is nestled in dense foam with an almost perfect fit. Beneath lies the accessories, including the heavy duty power supply, torque key, USB cable, and manual. It’s clear presentation is a priority.

In the box you’ll find:

  • DD2 wheelbase unit
  • Power supply and cable
  • Torque key
  • USB connection cable
  • Manual and stickers
  • Emergency stop button with remote on/off switch

It’s a simple bundle, but has everything needed to get set up. Notably absent is a steering wheel, which must be purchased separately. More on compatible options later.

Specifications and Features

The DD2 is built around a bespoke direct drive motor, delivering a mammoth peak torque of 25Nm. That’s enough force to quite literally rip the wheel from your hands if you aren’t careful. The motor spins to a maximum of 2520 degrees of rotation, offering ample range for full lock driving.

Physically, the wheelbase weighs in at a hefty 7.2kg. The housing consists of cast aluminum side plates finished with exposed carbon fiber accents on the front and back. It looks suitably hardcore for the performance on offer. On the front face lives a 2.7” OLED display capable of showing wheel settings, telemetry data, and other information.

Around back you’ll find a suite of ports and inputs:

  • Data port
  • Emergency stop
  • Pedal connections
  • Shifter 1 and 2
  • Handbrake

There’s also a port for the torque key which unlocks the full 25Nm potential of the DD2. Without it inserted, torque is limited to 8Nm maximum.

Setup and Installation

Getting set up is straightforward, but the DD2’s hefty weight means you’ll want an extra pair of hands or mechanical lift to avoid injury during mounting. Fanatec designed the DD2 to support all common mounting styles:

  • Bottom 3-hole pattern
  • Side mount 2-hole brackets
  • 5-hole front mount

I chose side mounting for my rig, but all result in a rock solid and secure fit.

With the wheelbase mounted, simply plug in the accessories and USB to your PC. Be sure to uninstall any other Fanatec drivers first to avoid conflicts. Download the latest Fanatec software suite, update firmware, and you’re off to the races. The process is smooth and user friendly.

Performance and Feel

Here’s where the DD2 separates itself from the competition. Simply put, the fidelity, detail and adjustability of the force feedback is incredible. The transition from a mid-range belt driven wheel to DD2 was night and day.

With the torque key plugged in, the power on tap completely transforms every aspect of the driving experience. The subtle nuances of grip loss, tire slip angles, curbs and bumps come alive in your hands. The forces are perfectly smooth yet enormously strong when called for. Light steering inputs translate delicately while wrestling for control through an aggressive slide produces arm-straining resistance. There’s simply no phase of driving that doesn’t feel natural and realistic.

After adjusting settings like friction, damping, and aligning force feedback profiles for each car and track, you can extract incredible immersion. The DD2 reveals details through the wheel you never knew existed. It brings a whole new level of feel that simply can’t be matched by less powerful alternatives. The realism is astounding.

Usage and Configuration

Unleashing the DD2’s full potential requires diving into the configuration software suite. Fanatec provides the following tools:

Fanalab – Offers extensive tuning options for force feedback along with tools to customize wheel aesthetics like LED and display settings. Prebuilt profiles exist for all major sims.

Driver Settings – Lower level tuning and testing features along with firmware updates.

While overwhelming at first, taking the time to properly tune the DD2 to your preferences pays massive dividends. Subtle adjustments make noticeable differences. I recommend starting from the recommended presets then tweaking to match your wheel, rig and driving style.

Accessories and Add-Ons

A major advantage of Fanatec’s ecosystem is the breadth of compatible wheels, pedals and accessories:

  • Steering Wheels – Options range from the affordable CSL Elite line up to premium wheels modeled after real GT3 race cars.
  • Pedals – Entry level sets to ultra realistic hydraulic brake pedal kits.
  • Shifters – H-pattern, sequential, and paddle shifter units.
  • Handbrakes – Core or Clubsport models available.

This deep compatibility and upgrade path is a key benefit of the DD2. You can start with an entry bundle then upgrade over time for the ultimate experience.


The Fanatec DD2 direct drive wheelbase offers an incredible experience that truly transforms sim racing immersion. Nothing else I’ve tested comes close to providing the fidelity, detail, and adjustability on offer here. While the price is extreme, you get what you pay for – a no compromise setup for dedicated enthusiasts chasing maximum realism.

If you’re seeking the pinnacle of immersion to pair with a solid rig and premium peripherals, the DD2 earns its reputation as one of the best consumer racing wheels money can buy. Highly recommended for those willing to pay for elite performance.


Is the DD2 worth the price?

For hardcore sim racers seeking the ultimate experience, absolutely. More casual users may not find the upgrade compelling. But for immersion, realism and detail, the DD2 is incredible.

What steering wheels work with the DD2?

All Fanatec wheels are compatible. The Podium line offers premium materials and performance. Entry level wheels like the CSL Elite provide great value.

Do I need accessories like the brake performance kit?

Not at all – the DD2 works great out of the box. But upgrading pedals, wheels and other elements down the road completes the high-end experience.

Is the DD2 easy to install and configure?

Installation is straightforward but requires some heavy lifting unless you have a mechanical assist. Software configuration has a learning curve but presets get you started quickly.

How strong is the force feedback?

With 25Nm of torque on tap, the DD2 can quite literally rip your arms off if you’re not careful. Thankfully multiple safety systems are in place, but respect the power!


Fanatec Podium DD2