Advantages & Disadvantages
✅ Good force feedback
✅ Good value for money
✅ Beautiful bundle price
✅ Compatible with Playstation and PC
❌ Very simple pedalboard
❌ Fairly cheap overall appearance
Today, virtually every petrolhead, car fan, and racing enthusiast is into sim racing. It’s a discipline that has grown enormously over the last two decades, thanks mainly to innovations from brands like Thrustmaster, Logitech, and Fanatec.
Setting up a sim-racing setup is a straightforward thing these days and cheap for some. For example, for as little as €200, you can have a steering wheel with a base and pedalboard, as with Thrustmaster T150.
Gone are the days when car racing on the “small screen” was limited to playing with joysticks, even if these have become excellent over the generations of consoles. If you want to race at Monza, you need a setup worthy of the circuit’s reputation, and I’ve got just the steering wheel + pedalboard bundle that’s perfect and cheap.
In what follows, I will introduce you to the Thrustmaster T150. I will tell you about its features, advantages, and disadvantages, and who it’s best suited to.
Main and technical features of the steering wheel
- Playstation-licensed steering wheel
- 28 cm diameter wheel
- 1080° rotation angle
- Belt and gear drive motor
- Crankset with two pedals
- Compatible with PS3, PS4, PC and some PS5 titles
- Metal wheel structure
- 13 cm metal pallets
The Thrustmaster T150 is a wheel that arrived on the market in 2016 and shows little in its design. Overall, the wheel is sober, with the lower and upper parts in black and the sides in blue. The material used looks like perforated leather, but it’s rubber.
The wheel is 28 cm in diameter, a little small for my taste, but it will suit any sim-racer perfectly, whether for GT, rally, or even F1 racing. I wouldn’t take the Thrustmaster T150 as the main steering wheel for F1 22 sessions, but it’s still affordable for some sim racers.
The base, meanwhile, is made entirely of plastic and houses the T150’s belt-and-gear-drive motor. This base takes up a lot of space, but that’s typical for this force feedback technology.
As for the crankset, it’s fundamental, with plastic for the structure and the two pedals. The footrest is relatively broad, with a non-slip coating. Again, it’s entirely in design and feel, and I’ll return to that below.
The Thrustmaster T150 is the manufacturer’s entry-level steering wheel, which lacks advanced technology and other features. The T150 can be mounted on a table, desk, or cockpit, provided the latter is compatible.
By the way, attaching it to one of the setups I’ve just mentioned will only take a few minutes with its connection to the gaming platform (consoles or PC), and that’s a bit of a change from other sim-racing peripherals that can take up to twenty minutes to install. The T150 is designed to be affordable and” user-friendly,” even if this isn’t the case regarding buttons.
Manufacture and finish
Being an entry-level product for less than €200, I’ll leave you to guess this steering wheel’s build quality and finish. In two words, it’s “straightforward”. Plastic dominates most of the steering wheel, with only the wheel structure in metal to give it solidity.
As for the rest, plastic and more plastic, especially on the pedals. Even if, in absolute terms, it’s well made with a good finish, it’s still a material that gives the wheel a cheap image. When you handle it, it makes a lot of noise, and I’d advise you to take it easy on the crankset, or you’ll blow it up under heavy braking.
Even if it’s still an entry-level product, Thrustmaster has a reputation to uphold, which shows the build quality. Surfaces are smooth, as are the joints between parts. You won’t feel any sharp or protruding edges, and that’s frankly all I’m looking for in a steering wheel at this price.
Handling the steering wheel
Despite everything, the grip is good on the Thrustmaster T150. Even though the wheel is a little small, I didn’t feel any discomfort during my sim-racing sessions. With a surprisingly high grip, the rubber coating helps a lot when you’re playing for a long time. I can race for hours without my hands slipping off the wheel.
The paddles are large (13 cm), metal, and attached to the wheel. This is excellent; you can shift gears while steering without your hands leaving the wheel. However, some drivers prefer to have them on the base because they know their position is permanently fixed. It’s a personal preference, and I won’t argue the point.
Let’s talk about the buttons. On the Thrustmaster T150There are 13 buttons and a D-Pad. Some controls are easy to access with the thumb, but the others are too central for my taste. On several occasions, I had to remove my hand from the steering wheel to press a button in-game. That’s not user-friendly, especially when you’re in a hot race.
Where the T150 is in the feel of the game, to put it simply, it’s a perfect wheel for the price. The motor provides fairly robust force feedback, which is fine and, above all, very precise.
I don’t know how Thrustmaster has produced such sensations from a belt-and-gear-drive motor because other brands can’t do the same. At Logitech, for example, on the G29 ( à discover right here), the direct competitor of T150 steering and force feedback is sometimes blurred, something I hate on a sim-racing steering wheel.
Although I did notice a slight, tiny dead zone in the center, you quickly get used to it, and the feel is not altered. The magnetic sensor mounted on the steering column certainly plays a vital role in the sense of the engine.
As for the paddles, they’re superb for the price. Made of metal, they click relatively well, and you won’t miss a gear during use. The same cannot be said of the pedals and their feel. It’s cheap, all plastic, and I always fear blowing it up during braking. Honestly, I’d rather spend more money and buy another crankset. If interested, check out my article on the 4 Best Cranksets for Sim Racing in 2023.
Regarding compatibility, the Thrustmaster T150 is designed to work on PC, PS3, PS4, and PS5. You can expect somewhat limited compatibility with Sony’s latest console on titles. Some support it, others don’t. And if you’re looking for a steering wheel compatible with Xbox consoles, I’ll leave you to it. Click here.
For other manufacturer peripherals, such as the gearshift lever TH8A, which works perfectly with this steering wheel via a USB cable. Generally speaking, the Thrustmaster is well supported on all Thrustmaster products.
Value for money
The other recommended price for Thrustmaster T150 is €200, except that it’s often found for around €150 or even less. Given the quality of the steering wheel, the reasonable force feedback, and its driving precision, the T150 remains one of the best in its price range.
Even if the build quality of the T150 is not at the same level as an entry-level steering wheel from Fanatec, it is undeniable that the flywheel of Thrustmaster offers excellent value for money.
The T150 is a steering wheel aimed primarily at beginner and amateur sim racers. I enjoyed my sim-racing sessions with it, especially when you consider that the price is superbly attractive for small budgets, and that’s why this wheel is a must-have for beginners in sim-racing.
If you’re going to buy this wheel, I’d recommend it. Just remember to use a different crankset of much better quality than the one supplied with the T150, and you’re all set. But if you’re not convinced or just curious, I suggest you read my review on The 6 Best Steering Wheels for Sim Racing in 2023.