Following the news that Australian sim racing rig manufacturer, Trak Racer, would enter the electronics game comes its first-ever wheel base.
The company primarily known for cockpits is now venturing into the wider ecosystem, with functional prototypes for its handbrake, sequential shifter, steering wheels and pedals, plus the debut of a new wheel base.
Two versions of the device are currently planned: 15Nm and 30Nm of peak torque
Initially PC-only, Trak Racer is said to have been testing the motor for over a year and was gathering feedback from visitors of the Maastric-based Sim Formula Europe event ahead of finalising its design. Production is expected towards the end of this year.
We were able to test a very early pre-production version of the 15Nm base, albeit not at its peak torque output, paired with the company’s latest TR160S rig, pedals, sequential shifter and handbrake – all also shown in prototype form at the event, save for the cockpit which is complete and available to purchase now.
The feedback felt detailed and well-suited to the rally title at this early stage, but any serious judgements must be saved for a much later date. There is potential here for the upstart to challenge the more established wheel base manufacturers.
We tested the device using one of Trak Racer’s steering wheels. Relatively simple GT and rally or drift-style wheels are ready for production, following a first public showing as 3D printed models back in 2022. A formula-style wheel with an LCD display is still in development.
Outside of its own range, the plan is to have a quick-release system with wireless power and communication that supports third-party brands. We expect to find out more later in the year.
Made from what’s claimed to be ‘aviation-grade’ aluminium alloy, the device can be bottom, front or side mounted,
“We’re a manufacturer of hardware and there are multiple options for mounting items,” explained Trak Racer’s Global Business Development Manager Johan Akkerman to OverTake.
“We figured ‘you know what’, we’ll make a wheelbase that mounts on pretty much any other manufacturers’ rigs as well.”
Software To Match The Hardware
Of course, electronic sim racing hardware requires software on a PC to tinker with settings. In another first for the company, Trak Racer Device Manager is just that. While the devices are clearly prototypes, the way you set them up felt extremely advanced, if not final in its on-screen descriptions.
In our demonstration, it seemed logically laid out and you could alter parameters across all the proposed devices.
One example is the LED light control (the wheel base features two exterior strips) which in theory could allow them to showcase engine revs, coloured flags, flash at a low fuel level, when the pit limiter is engaged or even blink if there’s a car on your left or right.
For the upcoming formula-style wheel with an in-built display, the readouts could be customised (or selected from presets) within the software too.
Of course, there will be a detailed array of force feedback settings to play with alongside items such as the range of movement for the handbrake or pedal load volumes.
Near-Complete Sim Racing Ecosystem
Apart from producing its own PCs, consoles and virtual reality headsets, it seems that Trak Racer is aiming to be a ‘one-stop-shop’ for sim racing.
Alongside the aforementioned equipment, it has also started shipping gaming monitors – it offers a 49″ 144HZ DFHD 3840×1080 Super Ultrawide (32:9) and a 34″ Ultrawide UWQHD 165HZ 1MS QLED 3440X1440 (21:9) – check your graphics card for compatibility. It even has a wireless headset with a microphone available.
What we can say at this stage is that Trak Racer is not short of ambition as we expect further updates and pricing throughout the year.
What are your expectations from Trak Racer’s initial electronic sim racing hardware range? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll be back when the time is right with a detailed review.