- Great direct drive performance
- Direct drive compatible with PS5
- Quiet during operation
- Comes bundled with a wheel and pedals
- Steering wheel looks & feels cheap
- Not available to buy separately
- Needs boost kit
What is the Fanatec Gran Turismo DD Pro?
Ever since Fanatec released the CSL DD back in mid-2021, sim racers everywhere have been waiting for the official PlayStation compatible version to be announced. After what seemed like an eternity, Fanatec released the Gran Turismo DD Pro in November 2021.
The GT DD Pro sim racing wheel is actually a complete sim racing bundle as opposed to the individual wheelbase that is the CSL DD. You can’t currently buy the PlayStation direct drive wheelbase separately. The only option is one of the bundles that Fanatec have created.
The good news is that all of the bundles include both a steering wheel and a pedal set along with the direct drive wheelbase. This means you can plug it all in straight out of the box and go racing straight away. And there is no need to purchase any additional components before being able to sim race with the GT DD Pro.
The other great news is that Fanatec worked closely alongside Polyphony Digital, developers of Gran Turismo, to ensure this wheel works perfectly with the upcoming Gran Turismo game. I’ll touch more on this licensing deal later on in the review.
Different GT DD Pro Versions Explained
Below are all of the Gran Turismo DD Pro bundles that you can currently buy.
- GT DD Pro (5Nm version, 2 pedal set) – $/€699.95 – More info
- GT DD Pro Express (5Nm wheelbase, 2 pedal set, early delivery) – $/€849.95 – More info
- GT DD Pro (8Nm version, 2 pedal set) – $/€849.90 – More info
- GT DD Pro Premium (8Nm wheelbase, 3 pedal set with load cell) – $/€969.85 – More info
As you can see, there are a few bundle variations of the GT DD Pro, some bring more features to the party than others. This choice is really down to personal preference and how much budget you have.
Gran Turismo DD Pro (5Nm)
The base version of the Gran Turismo DD Pro features the PlayStation version of the base CSL DD wheelbase. It creates 5Nm of torque, which is sent directly through the steering shaft via direct drive technology. 5Nm of torque isn’t overly strong for a direct drive wheelbase, but it is more than powerful enough for many casual sim racers. It is a great entry point into the Fanatec ecosystem.
You will also receive the Gran Turismo licensed steering wheel. I’ll cover this steering wheel in more detail later on, but it features a wide range of inputs allowing you to adjust your car while racing. It also features a bright OLED display and rev lights, paddle shifters and a perforated rubber grip.
Finally, in the bundle, you’ll receive the new and improved CSL two pedal set. These pedals come with just two pedals, a throttle and a brake pedal, both with magnetic sensors.
Gran Turismo DD Pro (8Nm)
For an additional $/€150 you can upgrade and purchase the 8Nm version of the GT DD Pro. This bundle features everything you get in the 5Nm bundle, but with the addition of the Boost Kit 180.
This kit boosts the power output of your GT DD Pro wheelbase up to 8Nm of torque. That is a considerable jump over 5Nm and is a jump that I’d recommend. See why I’d recommend the 8Nm version in my CSL DD in-depth review where I cover the differences between the 5Nm and 8Nm versions.
Gran Turismo DD Pro (Express)
The Express bundle is identical to the base 5Nm GT DD Pro, however, you get an earlier delivery slot. At the time of writing this review, you can get guaranteed delivery before Christmas 2021. I’m sure this bundle will no longer exist after Christmas 2021.
Gran Turismo DD Pro Premium
The most expensive version of the GT DD Pro is the Premium bundle. This bundle gives you the 8Nm version of the wheelbase but throws in an additional pedal. This turns your pedals into a full three pedal set, with the extra pedal being a load-cell brake pedal.
The load-cell brake pedal is absolutely worth investing in if you can. It features a strong load-cell designed to closely replicate real-world braking. It is a huge improvement over the magnetic brake pedal included in the base version of the GT DD Pro.
The Gran Turismo DD Pro design reviewed
The GT DD Pro has split opinions around the sim racing community over its design. Most sim racers are extremely happy to have a PlayStation compatible version of the CSL DD available to buy. However, some have criticised the design of the steering wheel itself. You can certainly see the influence of Japanese developer Polyphony digital.
The wheelbase design
The design of the wheelbase is very similar to that of the CSL DD. It takes the same form factor, similar design aspects, but with a few tweaks to show that you have the GT DD Pro version.
If you are interested, I have a more in-depth design review in my CSL DD review.
I wont cover the entire design in too much detail as I have already covered the majority of it in my CSL DD review. But I will touch on the differences.
There are subtle differences throughout the wheelbase design, from the more rounded corners to the ventilated front panel. These don’t really add or remove anything from a design perspective and presumably were done more so you can quickly differentiate between the CSL DD and the GT DD Pro.
The largest design change comes at the rear of the wheelbase. On the rear, gone is the solid square design from the CSL DD. And instead, Fanatec has designed in a circular aesthetic. This large circular design features a bright blue ring at its outer edge with a domed inset panel where your connection ports are housed.
I really like this design, and although you don’t often look at the rear of your racing wheel when you do this design works much better than the square block of the CSL DD.
Is the Gran Turismo license important
Fanatec has pulled a big win out of the bag by securing a licensing deal with Polyphony Digital, maker of Gran Turismo. Being able to call this an official Gran Turismo racing wheel for PlayStation is great. This deal will help both brands push their corresponding products, and should help Fanatec reach a wider audience with this racing wheel bundle.
The steering wheel design
The steering wheel itself features some of the great features of normal Fanatec wheels, but I really dislike the wheel design. Fanatec has said they worked with Polyphony Digital to design and create this steering wheel and you can tell. As it isn’t up to the usual standard of other Fanatec wheels.
Most Fanatec wheels are heavily inspired by real steering wheels found in motorsports. The use of materials such as Alcantara and Carbon Fibre is what set Fanatec’s wheels apart from the competition. And normally Fanatec really hit the mark with their wheel designs. Just look at the Formula V2.5 steering wheel, it is a thing of beauty.
If you remove the Fanatec OLED display, this Gran Turismo licensed steering wheel looks like it could have been included in a $/€300 racing wheel bundle.
The combination of the huge amounts of plastic on show, with the brightly coloured directional sticks, and the rubber grip really let this wheel down. It appears to have been designed to reflect the more casual nature of a game like Gran Turismo. In isolation from the rest of the Fanatec gear, the steering wheel looks much more like a toy, rather than a motorsport wheel.
The newly designed CSL pedals
Getting back to an original Fanatec product, the CSL pedals feature a much cleaner design. These pedals are designed to replace the all-black CSL Elite pedals, and they certainly look the part. The entirety of these pedals has been manufactured from solid steel, with a black and silver design.
These pedals have been upgraded over the older CSL Elite pedals, by adding magnetic hall-effect sensors. This means that the pedal position is now measured contactlessly meaning you won’t encounter any wear or performance degradation over time.
Depending on one whether you purchase the base GT DD Pro or the premium bundle, you can upgrade these pedals to feature a load-cell brake pedal. (The load-cell is included with premium bundles) The load-cell pedal really helps this pedal set come alive by closely replicating real-world braking performance.
The load-cell pedal gets added as a third pedal into the set acting as your brake pedal. It utilises an adjustable load-cell braking system that measures pressure rather than distance. This is much closer to real-world cars which can utilise the force you put into the pedal to dictate brake pressure.
GT DD Pro performance
Let’s jump into testing the GT DD Pro performance, this is the part where things really matter. Just how good (or bad) is the Gran Turismo DD Pro?
There is a lot of this performance review that has already been covered in my Fanatec CSL DD review. I would suggest heading over and reading that for a more in-depth review. Here I will outline the performance rather than bringing you my deep dive review, as I’ve already covered that here.
The 5Nm base wheelbase does a great job of bringing direct drive technology to an affordable budget. While 5Nm of torque isn’t overly strong, it feels adequate when racing. But due to the direct drive technology, the clarity and detail of the force feedback is vastly improved over belt-driven racing wheels.
While the 5Nm of torque is adequate for most scenarios, everything jumped up a gear when the 8Nm is in force. This is a result of the Boost Kit 180 which is part of the premium bundle, and it really does transform the experience.
Suddenly, all forces are much stronger and you can feel when you start to break traction much easier. While the 8Nm of torque won’t necessarily make you faster than the 5Nm setup. It will certainly provide you with increased amounts of force feedback giving you the tools to make decisions easier.
During operation over longer periods of time, the wheelbase only ever got slightly warm. There were no real heat issues at all. Also, the noise is surprisingly quiet for a wheelbase. There is no internal fan so it can operate almost entirely silently.
For the price, the performance on offer by the GT DD Pro is mightily impressive.
Which GT DD Pro bundle is the best
The fact that there are a few different bundles to purchase is great, as different sim racers will want different things out of their sim racing wheel.
If you’re after the best experience, then the premium bundle will be your go-to. It includes a more powerful wheelbase thanks to the Boost Kit, and it includes a load-cell brake pedal. And both of these additions are well worth the upgrade.
However, if you are keen to be a part of the Fanatec ecosystem while keeping your budget down, then the base bundle is still a super buy. The base bundle includes the 5Nm wheelbase, which is still impressive for the price. And you’ll get the two-pedal set. While not including a load-cell brake, the two-pedal set is still a great piece of hardware and a big improvement over similarly priced pedals from other brands.
The decision on which bundle works best for you can only be decided by yourself. It is great to see Fanatec offering a range of options as the more choice as a consumer the better! (My pick would certainly be the premium bundle due to the upgrades which cost more to add on if purchased separately.)
Gran Turismo DD Pro price
That brings me nicely on to the price, and whether the Gran Turismo DD Pro is worth the money that Fanatec is asking for it. Looking at all of the products broken down, we can see if the bundle represents good value or not.
Despite the wheelbase not being sold individually, we can look at the CSL DD as it is almost identical. The CSL DD 5Nm wheelbase retails for $/€349.95. The CSL pedals (two-pedal set) retails at $/€79.95. You also get the ClubSport table clamp V2 included in all bundles which is priced at $/€59.95.
So far that brings the value of products up to $/€489.85, and that is before we account for the steering wheel. So if we remove that value from the overall bundle price of $/€699.95 that leaves us with a cost of around $/€210 for the steering wheel itself.
As you will have read above, you will know that I do have my issues with this steering wheel, mainly feeling a little cheap and toy-like. So is the steering wheel really worth over $/€200.
As a comparison, Fanatec’s lowest price steering wheels if purchased separately cost from $/€139.95, with most retailing for well over $/€200. While I am not a fan of the steering wheel design or the materials used, it does come with all of the functionality of higher-priced Fanatec steering wheels.
So to include the steering wheel into this bundle at around $/€210 isn’t too bad. Overall, the base 5Nm bundle doesn’t bring too much in the form of savings, but the value does represent the price you are paying.
Gran Turismo DD Pro Premium price
The premium bundle includes two notable extras on top of the base price we just looked at, the load-cell brake pedal and the Boost Kit 180. Normally the load-cell brake kit costs $/€139.95, and the Boost Kit 180 costs $/€149.95. So from the Premium bundle, you are getting $/€290 worth of extra upgrades.
The Premium bundle costs $/€269.90 more than the base 5Nm bundle. This brings you a saving of around $/€20 compared to buying the items separately. In my opinion, these upgrades really elevate the whole experience so to get them bundled in with any form of saving is good value.
GT DD Pro compatibility
When the original CSL DD was released in mid-2021, one of the biggest commissions was the fact it was only compatible with Xbox consoles and PC. The GT DD Pro has really fixed this issue by being natively PlayStation compatible.
But on top of that, the GT DD Pro wheelbase is compatible with both Xbox and PlayStation. This is due to how Fanatec handles its console compatibility. Here is a great guide on how Fanatec handles console compatibility.
Essentially, the CSL DD wheelbase will only ever be compatible with PC and Xbox, while the GT DD Pro wheelbase is compatible with Xbox, PlayStation and PC. Although you will need to purchase an additional Xbox compatible steering wheel for the GT DD Pro to work with your Xbox console.
If you do purchase an additional Xbox compatible steering wheel, your whole racing setup will become Xbox compatible. This applies to the pedals and any other Fanatec peripherals you attach such as a shifter.
Ultimately, if you are a cross-console sim racer, buying the GT DD Pro will enable you to race on both consoles using the same wheelbase!
Should you buy the Gran Turismo DD Pro?
So this brings us on to whether the Gran Turismo DD Pro is a recommended buy or not. And quite honestly, if you are a PlayStation sim racer, it is a strong buy from me.
There is no other PlayStation compatible wheelbase on the market at this price that delivers the quality of force feedback that the GT DD Pro does. Combine this with the great Fanatec ecosystem, and the pedals which also perform fantastically, and you have the combination for a winning product.
My only criticism of this product is of the steering wheel. It looks much cheaper than other Fanatec steering wheels, and the build quality isn’t much better than lower-cost alternatives.
However, over time, a simple steering wheel upgrade from Fanatec and you will have a sim racing wheel that will last you an awfully long time!