Fanatec Clubsport v3
Advantages & Disadvantages
✅ Excellent build quality
✅ Premium materials throughout the pedals
✅ Load Cell
✅ Ability to swap pedals
❌ No pedal travel adjustment
Sim-racing fans don’t need a presentation of Fanatec and its peripherals. The brand has over 20 years of experience in sim racing and is so dominant that BMW entrusted it with the task of developing the steering wheels for its GT cars. And that, my friends, says a lot about the sim-racing peripherals manufacturer.
The German brand’s approach to sim-racing products is customization: any racer can make his sim-racing setup with the peripherals he wants. It has to be said that Fanatec is highly compatible and especially rich in products.
Long an undisputed fan of the German brand, I’ve always loved running with its products. It’s just that Fanatec thinks of everything when it comes to sim-racing, and that’s what I like about this brand. Everything is configurable between the base, wheel, and pedals to work perfectly on your setup. In what follows, I will introduce you to the Clubsport V3 pedals Load Cell, which has been sitting on the podium of sim-racing peripherals for a long time, with no shadow of a competitor on the horizon. I will tell you about its features, strengths, and a few weaknesses, and give you my opinion.
Main features and technical specifications of the pedals
- Load Cell pedals for brakes
- Full metal structure
- Three high-quality pedals
- Compatible with all platforms
- Max. brake pressure 90 kg
- Vibration on brake and gas pedal pedals
- RJ12 connection for Fanatec bases and USB for other ecosystems
- 12-bit magnetic sensors
I don’t know about you, but I have a soft spot for metal peripherals. This material gives a very premium feel to all products, and this is the case with the ClubSport V3. It’s simply stunning, with its black color and red accents.
The structure is made of steel with a brushed aluminum support and is simply sublime. The pads are adjustable on the pedals on two axes to accommodate the maximum number of riders. The design is industrial, as you would find inside a racing car. From first contact with the ClubSport V3You get the impression that this is a quality, premium product. What’s more, the beast is quite heavy, weighing in at nearly 8 kg.
The ClubSport V3 from Fanatec is a relatively premium pedals, even though it’s part of the ClubSport range. Nevertheless, it has been designed for use in a cockpit and on the ground.
For a standard configuration, you have skids on the underside to hold the ClubSport V3 in place, whatever surface it’s placed on. These are top-quality treads, and this pedals won’t move a muscle. The German manufacturer has provided screw slots for sim racers with cockpits, enabling you to attach the pedals directly to the chassis.
Manufacture and finish
In terms of artistry and finish, it’s worthy of BMW, Mercedes, or Audi. In a nutshell, perfection. The ClubSport V3 is a very well-designed device for its price. The use of steel for the overall structure of the product and brushed aluminum for certain parts make the ClubSport V3 a masterpiece in every respect.
The metal parts are machined to millimeter precision, with no burrs or sharp edges. You can tell Fanatec masters the manufacturing of metal sim-racing peripherals, and the ClubSport V3 is living proof, if I may say so.
The beast weighs in at 8 kg, which is rather heavy. But it does bring its share of solidity and resistance to the vagaries of a sim-breeder’s life. The ClubSport V3 is a product designed to last a long, long time.
Getting to grips with the pedals
You’ll feel the weight as soon as you take it out of the box. Eight kilos is a lot, but it’s a blessing in disguise. Since the ClubSport V3 is made entirely of metal (steel and aluminum), the device doesn’t move a muscle when you use it, and I love that.
The three pedals have 2-axis adjustments on the pads on top to accommodate sim-racers’ preferences. Fanatec offers additional springs for the gas pedal and clutch pedals in case you’re not satisfied with the ones already fitted.
The accelerator pedal is relatively soft and offers limited resistance. The clutch pedal is degressive when pressed. This means that the pedal will be hard at first, then will become lighter after a certain point. The brake is made of a Load CellThis is the opposite of the clutch pedal. The harder you press on the brake, the more complex the pedal becomes, transmitting the force exerted by your foot to the game. And it’s just perfect!
As for the connection to the base, you have a cable RJ12, which connects directly to the peripherals (floors) of the Fanatecand a USB cable for the rest of the platforms. The electronic unit of the ClubSport V3 is located below the footrest, allowing lines (RJ12 or USB) to protrude from virtually any side, which is a big plus when handling a pedalboard, as it doesn’t restrict installations against walls or other surfaces.
Sensations during play
Let’s get down to business! How does it feel to play ClubSport V3? In a few words, it’s a teleporter out of Star Trek that sends you straight into the cockpit of a racing car.
To begin with, it’s ultra-realistic, especially regarding the sliding clutch and Load Cell brake. It’s simple: It’s exactly like being in a car, and I love it. The clutch pedal is hard at first, which conveys the behavior of a genuine clutch, then becomes softer as the stroke increases.
The gas pedal is standard, with a very soft spring and vibrations. I must admit that the vibrations are excellent, but few games support them, which is a real shame. The brake is ultra-realistic and light years ahead of a spring and potentiometer pedal—light years. The harder you brake, the more excellent the resistance, adding even more realism. And one element pushes immersion and authenticity to the extreme: the vibration when the ABS activates! It’s thrilling to feel the pedal vibrate like a real car when the ABS is activated. It’s simply magnificent, and I weigh my words carefully. The ClubSport V3 is a well of pure, unadulterated sensations, and you won’t tire of this peripheral.
Being a product of Fanatecon ClubSport V3, it is compatible with all bases from the German manufacturer, which leaves you with an extensive range of sim-racing peripherals. Regarding platforms, it’s the same story: the ClubSport V3 will work on Playstation, Xbox, and PC, provided you have a base compatible with the platform in question. Here again, you have a wide choice of products.
As for sim-racing titles, the ClubSport V3 will be taken natively with virtually all currently available. However, you should know that the vibration functionality (brake and gas pedal pedals) will not work with all sim-racing titles, which is a real shame.
Value for money
Posted at 399.95 € on the website of Fanatecon ClubSport, V3 is still the cheapest pedals you can get in Load Cell currently on the market. Some may say that the price is relatively high, but I can assure you that the ClubSport V3 offers excellent value for money, and you won’t find anything better on the market at this price.
It’s simple: the ClubSport V3 is all-metal, features magnetic sensors, a Load Cell on the brake, a regressive clutch pedal, and a unique design. What more could you want?
I loved my hours with the ClubSport V3and in my opinion, it’s the best pedals on the market. Load Cell, which you can get for less than €400. Although it has shortcomings, Fanatec’s pedalboard has dominated its segment for many years, and that’s not likely to change any time soon.
If you’re a sim racing fan or want to improve your racing skills, I can only recommend the ClubSport V3. But if you’re not convinced (although I wouldn’t be), you can review my review on the 4 Best Pedalboards for Sim Racing in 2023.