Advantages & Disadvantages
✅ Excellent comeback for its range
✅ Breathtaking sim-racing immersion
✅ Different driving modes
✅ Good-quality crankset with bundle
❌ Hardly any
Sim-racing has come a long way since its beginnings in the late 90s, with the emergence of brands such as Logitech or Thrustmaster. At the time, this discipline was in its infancy, with a reasonably small fanbase. But that soon changed, especially with the democratization of game consoles like the PS2 and Xbox.
Sim-racing is more than a discipline or a hobby. It’s a unique passion I share with many sim racers worldwide. Driving a race car on a mythical circuit makes no sense if I don’t have my sim-racing setup, with at least a steering wheel, base, and pedals.
As I’m sure you’re aware, the peripherals of this discipline are diverse and varied, touching every category of sim-racer and especially bank accounts. Today, you can allocate a budget of €300 to sim-racing and still have excellent quality products, as with the Thrustmaster T248.
In what follows, I will introduce you to this steering wheel, the T248, and everything you need to know about it if you consider it the next key element in your sim-racing setup.
Main features and technical specifications of the steering wheel
- 28 cm diameter wheel
- Max. rotation angle 900°.
- Crankset with three pedals
- Intuitive, easy-to-use OLED display
- Flat-bottomed steering wheel
- Brushless motor for force feedback
- Compatible with PS4, PS5 and PC
- Different driving modes
Design is, well, I find, a somewhat subjective element, especially when it comes to sim-racing peripherals. But the truth is Thrustmaster T248 has a beautiful steering wheel. The wheel is 28 cm in diameter, with a flat bottom and predominantly sober colors. Black predominates, and gray.
The overall design of the steering wheel is plastic but with a well-made look. It’s on par with a CSL DD Gran Turismo from Fanatec (on which I have already given my opinion), and I love it. On the steering wheel, there’s a red band at the top and buttons all over the place, echoing those on Sony controllers. It’s sober and very minimalist, with a few red accents here and there.
Unlike some of the manufacturer’s other models, the T248’s base, as are the paddles, is relatively small. This is practical and allows it to go unnoticed on specific setups.
As for the pedalboard, it’s the T3PMand it’s excellent for its class. Its design is rather basic, with metal and plastic, but in absolute terms, it’s beautiful and blends in perfectly with the look of the steering wheel.
Unlike brands such as Fanatec or Simucube, which offer top-of-the-range products, Thrustmaster is more in the entry- and mid-range, with peripherals for virtually any sim-racer on a more or less limited budget. However, the brand wants to change this by attacking its competitors on their turf. But that’s the subject of another article.
The T248 is a recent mid-range steering wheel by today’s standards. It’s easy to assemble, with a mounting mechanism that allows it to be used on a desk, table, or cockpit. Many Playseat are compatible with Thrustmaster. If you’re interested, I invite you to discover some of the models I’ve been able to test. Click here.
What’s a shame, but completely understandable because of the price, is that this steering wheel doesn’t have a Quick Release for changing wheels. But then, for less than €300, it’s already an excellent product with superb force feedback.
Manufacture and finish
Since this steering wheel is new, it benefits from the latest advances in Thrustmaster. Although the structure of the T248 is made entirely of plastic, which is very well made, concessions had to be made to offer a high-performance and not-too-expensive product.
All surfaces of the T248 are smooth and fit together very well, without any burrs. It’s a beautiful steering wheel, very well finished for its price. I’ve seen more expensive peripherals with inferior finishes.
The T248 reminds me of a Fanatec in terms of manufacturing quality. The paddles are also plastic but use magnetic sensors and H.E.A.R.T. technology, ensuring responsiveness and precision. Although they clicked well during my use, I wouldn’t say I liked the plastic moving sound.
Apart from that, I found the T248 is a well-made steering wheel with an excellent finish.
Handling the steering wheel
As soon as you pick it up, you’ll immediately forget that the T248 is made of plastic. The grip on this steering wheel is just excellent, bordering on perfect, and that’s coming from a fan of Fanatec.
Overall, ergonomics are excellent, with buttons and controls placed very close to your hands, so you don’t have to take them off the wheel to press buttons. However, I would have liked to have had switches or just one to switch from one driving mode to another. Admittedly, you have a control specifically for this purpose on the left-hand side of the steering wheel, but I’ve grown accustomed to switches. It’s quicker and more precise.
The T248 is easy to handle, and you won’t feel any fatigue during your sim-racing sessions. The steering wheel is rock-solid in use, but there are occasional plastic noises here and there. All in all, it’s not annoying, but it can be a nuisance at first.
Another positive feature is the wheel’s leather finish. It’s well made and will allow you to spend hours sim-racing without too many problems.
Sensations during play
Thrustmaster products are known for providing excellent gaming sensations, and the T248 is no exception. This steering wheel is immersive in every detail.
The base motors work superbly and are calibrated to perfection to provide the most realistic force feedback. Moreover, Thrustmaster has added its magic sauce of proprietary technologies to push realism further, reproducing everything the car does.
The steering is both precise and highly responsive. During my hours with the T248, I didn’t notice or feel any dead spots in the center of the steering wheel. THE CAR IMMEDIATELY CHANGED TRAJECTORY when I turned the wheel a degree, making my sim-racing sessions more immersive.
I’d now like to turn to the pedals, the T3PM. Even though it’s almost entirely plastic, I wanted this crankset. The pedals are superbly well proportioned, whether for the gas pedal, brake, or clutch. By the way, Thrustmaster provides a different spring for the brake, allowing even more fine-tuning. This is an excellent crankset, rivaled only by-products from Fanatec in price.
Compatibility-wise, we’re well served with the T248. This steering wheel is available in two models, one compatible with Sony consoles, namely the PS4 and PS5 and PCS, and another compatible with Xbox consoles.
As far as cockpits are concerned, major brands such as Playseat offer chassis that are compatible with the T248 and for very little. This means you can easily set up a sim-racing setup for less than 500 euros, complete with the steering wheel, pedals, and cockpit.
Value for money
A 260 € on Amazonfrankly doesn’t get much better than the T248. This steering wheel provides such a good feel for the game, with an exemplary grip, that it offers superb value for money.
Admittedly, it’s made entirely of plastic, but this choice was made to ensure realism and immersion during sim-racing sessions. I assure you that you won’t find a steering wheel at this price that gives you all the T248.
Whether you’re a beginner or an amateur sim racer, the T248 is a must-have steering wheel for under €300. Competition is virtually non-existent at this price, and Thrustmaster’s steering wheel stands alone in a market segment much sought-after by sim-racing enthusiasts.
This is a stunning steering wheel that will hold its place for a long time to come. I highly recommend it to all sim racers. I adore it. 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.