On the back of all the recent leaks of Logitech’s new wheel/s, many people have been wondering if the company was going to simplify their lineup and consolidate it into a single wheel, or whether they were going to go the route of having separate wheel designs for different price points, as they’ve done previously with the G27 and the Driving Force GT. Well, they did both, but it also looks like they didn’t mess too much with the original hardware found in the G27. There’s some pros and cons to that, which you’ll find out if you join me after the jump.
The new Driving Force G29 is just like the one in leaks shown a few weeks ago here on NAG Online. The wheel design is a mash-up of the G27 and the DFGT, but now we have the D-Pad and Playstation buttons up top above the wheel’s centre spoke. The traction control buttons and red mode dialer are still there, so its definitely tying itself in for the next Gran Turismo title. The shift lights are unchanged from the G27 and the pedal set is only slightly different in design, although they still can’t be adjusted or reverse-mounted without tearing the whole thing apart.
Together with the G29, which is the official version for the Playstation platform, Logitech also announced the G920, a nearly identical version for the Xbox One platform and the PC desktop (keep in mind that the G29, while bearing the official Playstation logo, is still also PC-compatible just like the G27). The G920 lacks the traction control and mode dialer buttons, replaces the PS button with the Xbox Guide button, and inexplicably drops the shifter lights, a decision which is a little odd.
Internally, both wheels are identical. The gear drive mechanism from the G27 and GT is still there, and the same 900 degrees of rotation (2.5 turns lock to lock) is also still there. The wheel rims are clad in real leather, not fake leather as I had guessed earlier and the button and center stripe on the two wheels also changes colour, turning steel grey on the Xbox One version. A lot of other wheels are moving into using either alacantara or soft-touch rubber, while leather definitely feels like a more premium finish.
The shifter is now sold separately and looks like the G27 shifter with the top row of buttons lopped off. It still has the same six-speed gate with one reverse gear and it has the same mounting clamps on the sides, which mean that it’ll work with almost any racing seat out there that currently supports the G27. It might be backwards compatible with the G27 and G25, but there’s no way of knowing this without someone trying it out. At least replacement shifters won’t be difficult to come by any longer.
Finally, the pricing. Logitech says that the G29 and G920 will be available later this year at around $399.99, with the shifter available separately at $59.99, which works out locally to about R5000 and R750 respectively. Logitech’s G27, which comes with everything included, is well under that, sometimes retailing for as low as R3500 on a good sale. Is it worth paying R5000 for a gear-driven wheel? That depends on your personal preference. Hopefully there’s a cheaper update to the Diving Force GT that proves to be a better deal, though the plastic pedals might not be to your liking.