Racing fans have been trying to recreate the feel of track driving in the living room for years. While the gamepad is a good entry point, motorheads have no doubt at least eyed a racing wheel for a more authentic experience.
Thrustmaster’s latest, the TMX Force Feedback Racing Wheel, balances features and price. At $199, the Xbox One- and PC-compatible peripheral is an 11-inch wheel and two-pedal set that features 900-degree rotation.
I drove (poorly) around the Laguna Seca racetrack in Forza Motorsport 6 to test it out. The benefit of my miserable racing skill is that I had the opportunity to feel how the force feedback reacts to grass, dirt, track grooves, and occasionally, pavement.
There is a marked difference between the strong grip you get on asphalt and the slippage felt with loose dirt and wet grass under the tires. Hitting the safety ridges shook the wheel in my hand realistically, and all that was missing was the vehicle bumping around me.
The TMX is compatible with Thrustmaster’s other racing accessories. You can add a shifter and one of two three-pedal sets for manual racing with a clutch. For those that prefer manual to automatic, the wheel includes comfortable hand shifters. The full Xbox One button set is also easily accessible, though not intrusive, on the face of the wheel.
The TMX Force Feedback Racing Wheel is compatible with all Xbox One and PC games that support a wheel. It will be available in early May.