Many elder statespeople of simracing will tell you that it’s always faster to drive without asists enabled. But are they telling you the truth?
Photo credit: Kunos Simulazioni
Have you ever sought advice online when your lap times aren’t up to scratch, and simply seen recommendations to disable assists such as ABS and traction control over and over again? It is a generally held view among the esports racing community that traction control actually slows down the lap times of a proficient driver, because it limits power output to ensure smooth throttle application.
While this is certainly true on some games, when it comes to modern, realistic simulators such as Assetto Corsa Competizione, the traction control systems are significantly more advanced. But is it enough to make it actually faster to drive with the setting enabled? We put Ermin Hamidovic up to the task of finding out exactly that.
In order to work out, once and for all, whether traction control benefits lap times or not, Ermin took to Laguna Seca in ACC’s rendition of the McLaren 720s to drive three laps of the circuit. The first, with limited traction control enabled, the second with it fully enabled, and the third with traction control fully disabled.
Our hypothesis is that the lap times will get progressively worse. The fastest time should be set with minimal assists enabled, while no assists at all should provide the worst results. For the first lap, Ermin went with a setting of one (out of twelve) on the traction control, and a three out of twelve for the ABS. Overall, the lap was clean and without significant issue, the car simple enough to drive without feeling like it was held back by overbearing assists.
But how did it stand up to the other two laps? Well, next up was the full assists lap, with both traction control and ABS pumped up to their highest settings. It wasn’t pretty, but it got the job done. Was it faster than the minimal assists? How did both assist laps stack up against the lap driven with no assists at all? You’ll have to watch the video above to find out!
What level of traction control do you prefer? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!