Several cost-effective and ‘real’ clutch, brake, accelerator simulators, and rigs give you the natural feel of the car you are driving to help you practice control (particularly clutch control) without having to invest a lot in a sports car.
In this article, we will take a closer look at the best clutch, brake, accelerator simulator that you can buy, which are expected to last for years to come!
What Is A Clutch, Brake, Accelerator Simulator?
What is the best way to learn how to drive a car without actually having to risk your (and perhaps others) life? Driving simulators. This is particularly the case if you are a racing enthusiast looking to experience the thrill of driving a racing car – but without the inherent risks.
Several racing sims are out there that allow you to get “almost” up close and personal with the real thing as possible, such as Forza Horizon, Assetto Corsa, Ride, DiRT, and more. However, your experience and how much you learn to depend on the sim you choose and the rig.
It is essential to mention here that there is no substitute for practicing on a real car, especially learning clutch control. This is because, in real life, the vehicle gives you honest, four-dimensional feedback against your input. However, in a sim, without the proper gear and equipment, all your sim has to provide you with feedback is the sound.
There are several clutches, brake, accelerator simulators out there that also vibrate to give you feedback, which is a true asset towards helping you practice clutch control or simply learning how to drive. These simulators are often used in Formula 1 virtual simulator cockpits – so if they can benefit from the sim, why can’t you right?
Unfortunately, the primary benefit the F1 driver gets from the clutch, brake, accelerator simulator is learning the track. The car’s feel, feedback, and other elements are still something that the driver has to work out while in the car.
All this is to say that these simulators can be a great tool to help you get familiar with the car’s mechanics and the roads and can therefore serve as an excellent baseline for your driving or racing ventures.
Clutch, Brake, Accelerator Simulators – The Features
Car clutch cockpit gear was created for driving school training and Formula 1 analyses, but they have become relatively widespread. They have given rise to a new era of competitive virtual car racing tournaments.
Before these simulators, the most famous racing game used to be the Need For Speed series; the series only features an accelerator and a brake – which had a 0/1 combination at best (i.e., the accelerator and brake would either be on or off). There was no concept of applying the brake or pressing the accelerator softly.
Then came the concept of the clutch, followed by pressure-sensitive triggers. Of course, keyboards and controllers weren’t enough for the task. This is where the idea of racing rigs was born, and the true essence of clutch, brake, and accelerator simulators rose.
In the beginning, these car simulators were designed for specialized computers or consoles. However, their widespread demand meant that the simulators have become popularized on PC, PlayStation, Xbox, Android devices, Nintendo, and more. EA Games is said to be the pioneer for racing sims, but other studios have left the company far behind.
Some of the best clutch, brake, accelerator simulator rigs include:
- Fanatec CSL Elite
One of the smoothest clutch, brake, accelerator rigs out there offers a 180-degree turn to make you more precise turns and smooth operation that doesn’t tire you up that easily. The Fanatec gives you reliable force feedback and a large-diameter wheel, both of which make it an extremely appealing rig for pros,
It is made out of plastic, though, which may not give that premium feel you may be looking for.
- Logitech G923 Trueforce Racing Wheel
Logitech is known for its cost-effectiveness, despite which the build quality and features are much more appealing compared to many competitors. The rumble mechanism gives you reliable feedback against the ground type and misuse of the clutch – beneficial for clutch, brake, accelerator simulators such as DiRT.
The feedback is more detailed with the G923, while the build quality is impeccable, considering the price range.
- Thrustmaster TX Racing Wheel: Leather Edition
Another well-known name in the sim-racing industry, the Thrustmaster TX Racing wheel, is the Cadillac of clutch, brake, accelerator simulator rigs. Very heavy, rumble-enabled, and with detailed force-feedback, this rig offers superb control and quality for those looking to learn the ropes.
The wheel’s feel truly gives off that premium feels that you would expect from a sports car, while the 900-degree gives you that power-steering feel.
Best Clutch, Brake, Accelerator Simulators
There are several SimRacing and SimCades that you can choose with the proper rig for clutch control or to scratch that sim-racing itch. Some SimCades (racing simulators blended with arcade racers) include:
- Formula 1 (F1) series, particularly F1 2020 and 2021
- Forza Motorsports 5, 6, and 7.
- Gran Turismo Sport
- Project CARS
- Collin McRae Rally
- NASCAR Heat
- Forza Horizon Series
Some dedicated Clutch, Brake, Accelerator simulators to help you dive deep into the heart of racing include:
- Simracing GP
- Grand Prix Legends
- Richard Burns Rally
- Race 07
- F1 Career Challenge
- Assetto Corsa
Of course, there is also the Need For Speed series, but the clutch in the series is there for aesthetics more than to actually give you a taste of what the car would really feel like. It is more of an arcade game than a Clutch, Brake, Accelerator Simulator.
Importance of clutch, brake, and accelerator simulators
The importance of clutch, brake, and accelerator simulator has been highlighted in the wake of COVID-19 more than ever before because of the cancellation of the 2020 Formula 1 season. The idea of a virtual F1 tournament using these simulators and rigs was considered for quite a while and supported by many F1 drivers such as George Russell and Alexander Albon. The racers took part in the Virtual Grand Prix using the official F1 game.
Following this, the game and other simulators saw an active interest, creating much larger online communities and racing circuits. Many of these circuits are open for anyone to join, but there are some very competitive ones that you will have to sign up in advance for. The concept of E-Sports is growing because of the prevalence of these sims, the focus on making them more realistic, and the professional interest that F1 drivers are showing in these sims.
How to improve your racing with clutch, brake, and accelerator simulators
A great way to improve your racing on a base level before entering tournaments is via ranked m multiplayer games. It is important to note that when buying a clutch, brake, accelerator simulator for competitive reasons, make sure it has the option of the solo drive as well so that you have time to familiarize yourself with its mechanics.