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Asetek: First Impressions From ADAC SimRacing Expo

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With its enormous presence at ADAC SimRacing Expo 2022, Asetek SimSports made its intentions for the SimRacing industry clear – the Danes are aiming to be right at the top, competing with the likes of Fanatec. For many visitors, SRE22 was the first opportunity to get their hands (and feet) on their new equipment – of course, SimRacing Unlimited could not resist, either.

An LED banner at the top of their booth, an LMP3 car, a stage, multiple simulators – Asetek did not hold back with their Expo presence. Visitors could even buy equipment they liked directly at their exhibition space. After having been unveiled only recently, Asetek’s wheel bases and wheels drew enormous attention.

So, we had to have a go ourselves. Keep in mind that these first impressions are subjective, of course, so they may not reflect your own experiences. SRU editor-in-chief Yannik Haustein took time to try two different Asetek setups while in Nuremberg.

The first was the La Prima bundle, which is set to see its first shipment in late December and marks the entry level of Asetek’s devices. This term, however, does not mean that this line of product is of lesser quality: The 12Nm wheel base certainly did not feel like an entry level device, offering strong, but crisp force feedback, while the wheel had a nice build quality, albeit with less functions than its Forte cousin – which had to be expected.

© SimRacing Unlimited

Thrashing around a Ferrari F2004 at Spa-Francorchamps is always fun, and doing so with the La Prima bundle certainly did not impact this in a negative way. The pedals offered good grip when using shoes and would likely work well with socks as well, but the throttle pedal was one of the weaker points of the set – it is rather light. This can be remedied with an optional upgrade kit, however.

This upgradeability can be found throughout the Asetek ecosystem – which is supposed to see an expansion to a full ecosystem, as we learned – and makes it possible to add features of higher-level models later on.

On the other end of the scale, there was the top-end equipment, which was run with the same car and track combination. However, the force feedback was still set up for a GT3 car, which made it feel weaker than with the La Prima. Still, it felt really smooth, and the 27Nm motor of the Invicta base offers even more potential regarding the FFB.

The pedals offered a sizable difference compared to the La Prima set, with the brake offering the possibility to be set up much stiffer – which it was at the booth – as well as coming with an adaptable throttle pedal. The Forte wheel felt similar to the La Prima since they share the same shape, but the Forte had more buttons and and functions. All things considered, Asetek has made an impressive debut with its hardware.

Possibly the the best thing is yet to come, however: The manufacturer does not want to lock SimRacers in with their ecosystem when it comes to wheels, which is why they have partnered with multiple wheel manufacturers to make their quick release compatible with their wheels – even without a USB cord! It is not known yet when the QR adapter is going to be released, but from what we heard at the Asetek booth, it is going to be considerably cheaper than the competitions offerings.

© SimRacing Unlimited

Speaking of the quick release: Asetek’s solution has to be one of the easiest to use on the market. On the top of the steering axis, a paddle sticks out – pull on that and pull the wheel upwards without much force and removal is complete. For mounting a wheel, you just need to slide it in place – and there is no noticeable play or flex in the QR.

Have you tried Asetek’s equipment at the ADAC SimRacing Expo? Let us know your impressions in the comments!