As video games become ever more realistic, the lines between driving real cars and their virtual counterparts gets blurrier. And that line is at its blurriest with the steering wheel used in the Bentley Continental GT3 Pikes Peak race car. Not only is it a wheel for the race car, but it can be used for playing racing simulators, too.
Bentley collaborated with video game steering wheel manufacturer Fanatec to make the unit for the Pikes Peak racer. It’s impressive simply as a car wheel, as it’s made from magnesium and carbon fiber. The grips are covered in Alcantara, including the removable lower section designed to give the driver more leverage around hairpins. The rotary switches are CNC-machined aluminum with Bentley’s knurling design. In the middle of it all are LED rpm indicators and a 3.4-inch circular display that shows current gear selection and driver settings.
But a quick disconnect from the Bentley’s steering column, and wheel can be carried over to a Fanatec steering wheel base and reconnected for virtual fun. In this setup, the screen can show various in-game telemetry and information, and the buttons can be programmed for various functions.
Though availability and pricing haven’t been announced, you’ll be able to purchase your own example of this wheel. Considering the materials and functionality, it will probably be quite pricey, but certainly one of the more unique and usable automotive collectibles ever created. Even if you don’t want to use it for video games, it comes with a stand that turns it into a display piece, and the center screen can act as a watch or show map and telemetry from laps of race tracks. We suspect you could also use it as an actual steering wheel in a car, assuming you have a compatible quick release. Though, depending on the car, you might not be able to use all the switches, paddles or even the screen. Still, it would be cool and probably a quality piece.
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