£237 for a steering wheel? You could buy a car for that!

How rich are you feeling? Fanatec brought their new Porsche 911 Turbo wheel to the GR offices for a hands-on demonstration… and left us gobsmacked when they told us it costs 300 Euros. That's over £230 or $470. In other words a LOT of money, or enough to buy an Xbox 360 or Wii on its own.

So we asked the company's CEO, Thomas Jackermeier, to give us five reasons why the wheel's worth the money. And this is what he said:

One of his colleagues quickly pointed out he hadn't mentioned the Porsche license, to which he replied:

"I did not even mention once that the Porsche license is a feature because I don't want to give the impression that the people will have to pay for that. We are paying a very reasonable amount for this license which definitely will not make the wheel more expensive. You get what you pay for and this is a lot of technology."

We were given some hands-on (and feet-on) time with the wireless wheel and pedals, and we were impressed with the smoothness of the drive. It does feel like a real car's steering wheel, if a bit light to turn. However, we do use the official Xbox 360 force feedback wheel a lot and we have to say there isn't that much of a difference in quality. Nothing that screams "£167 better", anyway.

The Porsche model is smoother andquieter than the 360 wheel and it's got the added advantage of a gear stick. Well, actually, two – as you can choose whether you want the H or sequential layout by changing the gear lever.Everything feelssolid too and the pedals feel much more like real pedals than the 360 wheel, even featuring a drop-away on resistance in the clutch. Yes, there's a clutch pedal too. Very nice.

It's all wireless, it's built to last, comes with a non-slip mat and a neat little Porsche-branded USB key for the driver software. It's clearly a deluxe item. But when its cost is more than a third of the way towards that of areal Porscheon eBay, and easily as much as aregular second-hand car, this one's probably just for the hardest of hardcore driving fans... or someone for whom money is no object.

The wheel is available now, only throughFanatec's website.


Above: The wheel comes with this optional lap mount, but it's best when securely fixed to a desk