Would you pay $600 for a more realistic Gran Turismo 5 experience? Thrustmaster has made the T500 RS racing wheel official, delivering new details and specifications on the accessory that costs twice as much as a PlayStation 3.

Earlier this month we caught our first glimpse of Thrustmaster's T500 RS, a racing wheel controller specifically created for use with Gran Turismo 5. Gran Turismo creator Kazunori Yamauchi himself tasked Thrustmaster with creating the device to his exacting specifications.

"The goal that I set for the Thrustmaster team was to design for me the most precise wheel ever developed, without any latency – to accurately reproduce the sensations of GT5, and let users truly feel the emotions experienced by drivers on real racing circuits."


The end result is an absolutely gorgeous racing wheel, a weighty beast festooned with real metal parts and force feedback driven by a 65W industrial motor, providing 150mNm at 3000 RPM. The wheel itself offers 1080 degree rotation (three full turns), with a motorized stopping mechanism allowing players to adjust the rotation to fit their driving style.

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The metal pedal set is quite attractive as well, with adjustable resistances and two different positions: "Floor-mounted" F1 style, or "suspended" GT style.

This is the sort of racing setup that cries out for a full car cockpit with a widescreen LCD display where the windshield should be.

The high level of quality comes at quite a steep price. The suggested retail price is $599.99, not counting the optional independent gear stick Thrustmaster plans on releasing in the coming months.

Is Gran Turismo 5 worth that sort of investment to you?

The T500 RS wheel and pedal set will be available later this month or in early January, depending on the region.