How much does Sim Racing cost?
Sim Racing is a rapidly growing industry - new manufacturers are coming to the market, lots of exciting new products are being released, and new technologies (like Direct Drive wheels and VR) are being utilised to give us the best possible experience.
But when it comes to starting Sim Racing, it is an unknown about how much it actually costs. We'll give you a rundown on the approximate costs:
1) Xbox, PS4 or Gaming PC - from £200
You'll either need a gaming console or a gaming PC. Consoles are cheaper, at around £200 - £300, but for proper simulation racing, you need to move on to PC. You'll need a good gaming PC, with a good graphics card that can handle AAA games (i.e. the newest racing games). These Gaming PCs are around £900 if you build one yourself, or maybe £1200 if you buy from a retailer/manufacturer.
2) Racing Wheel & Pedals - from £200
Once you have your console, you need a wheel. There's a wide range of wheels available - the cheapest wheels start at under £100, but frankly they are complete trash. You need a half-decent racing wheel, which will cost about £200 - £300, and will include a set of pedals. As you get more experienced and want better quality, you will definitely want to consider a Direct Drive wheel, which start at about £900 for OSW, without the pedals. Then, a good set of high-quality pedals (LC/hydraulic) will set you back a few hundred pounds at least.
3) Sim Racing Rig - from £400
Every sim racer needs a rig. The cheapest rigs are the Sim-Lab GT1 Evo and Trak Racer RS6. The GT1 Evo start at £379.99, but does not include a seat so you need to supply your own seat - a proper bucket racing seat starts at about £250, but you could get creative and fit an old car seat or something, which you could get for a lot less than that, so it makes the GT1 Evo potentially a really affordable way to start sim racing properly, and the GT1 Evo is very strong, adjustable and customisable, so it is very popular. The Trak Racer RS6 includes a seat, but costs around £599, so essentially for a proper rig, you are looking at between £400 - £600. Obviously, accessories cost extra.
4) VR / Triple Monitors
It's not fair to count having a TV as part of costs to start sim racing, but we think having VR or Triple Monitors could be.
5) Games - from £20
Sim Racing games are largely pretty cheap (with the exception of iRacing). But games like Assetto Corsa Competizione, rFactor, GT Sport, Forza, KartKraft, Dirt Rally 2.0 etc all range from about £20 to £40 to buy, and that's a one off cost, so games are very affordable for all.
The truth is - you can make sim racing cost as much as you want it to.
If you want to be frugal, you can get a cheap wheel, mount on your table, and buy a second hand Xbox and get playing for no more than £200.
But if you want the best products, that will make you faster and give you the most immersive and enjoyable experience, you can end up spending many thousands on your sim racing setup.
You don't need to spend thousands to enjoy yourself though, there are plenty of great products that will fit your budget, whatever it may be.
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