The Playseat Challenge is a great piece of equipment. It accomplishes what it set out to do and it does it well. However, if you’re in the market for a beginner sim racing rig, there are a few Playseat Challenge alternatives to be aware of.
The 6 best Playseat Challenge alternatives are:
- Next Level Racing F-GT Lite
- Openwheeler GEN3
- Playseat Evolution
- Next Level Racing Challenger
- Playseat Forza Motorsport
- GTR Simulator GTA
Below, we’ll take a closer look at each of these racing setups to help you decide which one is right for you. But first, let’s consider the kinds of things you should be looking for in an alternative to the Playseat Challenge.
- • Highly adjustable
- • Most portable choice
- • Very comfortable
- • Lots of mounting options
- • Strong and stable
- • Simple setup
- • Very sturdy
- • Foldable seat
- • Looks great
The 6 Best Playseat Challenge Alternatives
1. Next Level Racing F-GT Lite
The F-GT Lite from Next Level Racing is the option on our list that best resembles the Playseat Challenge, making it the ideal alternative. However, it’s also packed with additional features and extra adjustability, making it a great choice for those that want something with more to offer.
Next Level Racing F-GT Lite
Highly Adjustable & Very Sturdy
It provides great value for money, and it’s within the same ballpark as the Playseat Challenge itself. It’s got you covered in terms of portability, as you can fold this cockpit up and store it away in between racing sessions. It’s also highly adjustable, which allows you to find the perfect racing setup for your particular needs.
The seat is secure, with the adjustable hubs rated to support up to 330 lbs (150 kg). This means you can adjust things like the angles and heights of each part without fear of the seat crumbling beneath you.
It offers great mounting options too, and it even comes with a shifter/handbrake mount for extra immersion. It’s a budget-friendly choice, which means it’s not going to be able to handle direct drive wheels without a fair bit of wobble. But if you’re in the market for a cockpit that competes with the Playseat Challenge, this is your best option.
- Lots of adjustability
- Mighty strong
- Highly portable
- Fair bit of flex in the components
2. Openwheeler GEN3
Next up, we have the Openwheeler Gen 3. It’s not only fully adjustable, but also fully reclining. The wheel and pedal mounts are also adjustable, meaning this chair can fit anybody, regardless of your height. Freakishly long legs? That’s okay. Tiny T-Rex Arms? Well the Openwheeler Gen 3 doesn’t give a hoot!
A Comfortable Choice
It is a bit on the heavy side at 65 lbs (about 29 kg), but it doesn’t have many parts and is therefore very easy to disassemble and store out of the way. The seat is made from a soft, comfortable fabric that doesn’t stick to you after a long gaming session.
Unfortunately, the use of fabric instead of leather means it doesn’t feel as premium as the other products on this list, but rest assured, it is very comfortable.
This all-in-one rig comes with a stick shifter mount included in the package, as well as the steering wheel and pedal mounts. Once set up, the seat is almost level with the floor. This can be a disadvantage for some people, but in my opinion, it gives the seat an F1 cockpit feel, and it’s not too dissimilar to that of the Playseat Challenge.
- Fully adjustable
- Very comfortable
- Simple to set up
- Low seating position may not suit everyone
3. Playseat Evolution
From the same brand that makes the Challenge, the Playseat Evolution is the next step up for those that want a sturdy but cost effective racing rig. It’s built to offer an immersive racing experience and is compatible with major sim racing hardware brands, and it’s a comfortable choice too.
Comfortable & Foldable
This rig comes with a wheel and pedal mount, and they’re designed to offer a decent amount of adjustability. However, the real star of the show is the comfortable racing seat you get with this rig. It’s not in the same low profile position as the Playseat Challenge, but this makes it more versatile for other forms of racing.
This can often mean it’s more comfortable over long sessions. It’s made from high-quality materials, and it’s a sturdy, durable choice. While not as portable as the F-GT Lite, you can fold the seat and adjust the mounts to reduce the size and make it easier to keep out of the way.
Note: The post that holds the wheel mount can get in the way of the pedals sometimes, so that's worth bearing in mind if you plan to choose this setup
This is a great choice for beginner sim racers that want a semi-permanent sim racing setup that looks sleek and is highly functional. It won’t cut it for direct drive wheels, much like most of the options on this list, but for those seeking a more durable alternative to the Playseat Challenge, this is a strong contender.
- Great racing aesthetic
- Durable and sturdy
- Foldable chair
- Not as portable as the F-GT Lite
- Wheel mount gets in the way of pedals
4. Next Level Racing Challenger
Next up we have another entry from Next Level Racing, this time with their Challenger cockpit. This is an option that comes with a comfortable seat, adjustable wheel and pedal mounts, and even a spot for your shifter. It offers great value for money, and it’s highly compatible with other sim racing hardware brands.
Next Level Racing Challenger
This racing cockpit offers a decent price to performance ratio, and it's highly adjustable. It's a great choice for beginners, and it comes with a reclining seat too.
Comfortable & Adjustable
You get plenty of adjustability with this cockpit, allowing you to change the height and angle of the wheel and pedal mounts, and you can even adjust the height of the feet on the bottom of the cockpit. The seat is adjustable too, and it will support up to 330 lbs (150 kg).
The comfortable seat has a fair bit of padding, making it usable over long races without leaving you feeling fatigued. It even reclines to offer you more customization to suit your racing style and preferred seating position.
The cockpit is built to support all major sim racing hardware brands, with a secure pedal baseplate making for a sturdy overall setup, even under hard braking. The NLR Challenger is a great choice for beginner sim racers that want a sturdier, more permanent setup alternative to the Playseat Challenge.
- Durable construction
- Fair bit of adjustability
- Comfortable reclining seat
- Not very portable
5. Playseat Forza Motorsport
The Playseat Forza Motorsport is made using high quality leather textured vinyl upholstery and is designed with comfort and practicality in mind. It’s very easy to assemble and disassemble, and its foldable design and removable seat cushions make it perfect for storage and transport when necessary. It’s fully adjustable and comes with a steering wheel mount and pedal mount.
Playseat Forza Motorsport
This is a strong and stable sim racing cockpit that offers a great alternative to the brand's Challenge model. It's highly adjustable, and it offers a sleek racing aesthetic.
It’s very easy for one person to assemble this seat and it comes with many Velcro tabs and cable ties to assist you with cable management. There is no wobble at all in the entire construction of the solid and sturdy framework as a result of the premium materials used in its construction.
Note: This seat suffers from the same wheel mount issue as the Playseat Evolution, as the post can get in the way of the pedals. It’s also more expensive, making the Evolution a better choice for those on a budget.
It is very comfortable but it lacks lumbar support, which is something to take in account when having long gaming sessions in the seat. Not only is the seat adjustable, but the steering wheel height and angle are both adjustable too, as are the pedals. This means almost anyone of any size can hop into this chair and start racing like a pro!
It’s at the higher end of the budget range, but for such a premium product that’s to be expected. It looks like a genuine racing seat made of premium materials on a strong stable frame. Overall, it makes for an excellent Playseat Challenge alternative for those that are looking for a bit more stability in their sim racing rig.
- Solid, sturdy seat with a premium feel
- Comfortable and fully adjustable
- Portable folding design
- Quite heavy
- No gear shifter mount included
- Wheel mount gets in the way of pedals
6. GTR Simulator GTA
In the final spot on our list is a more expensive choice, but it’s one that offers stability and adjustability that may make it ideal for those with a bit of a higher budget. The GTR Simulator GTA is built to last, and it offers plenty of mounting capabilities to suit most sim racing setups.
GTR Simulator GTA
Decent Adjustability & Stability
You get a mount for your pedals, wheel, and even your handbrake or shifter too, and each of these is adjustable to suit your specific racing style. You also get a 14-way adjustable seat that you can position in just about any way you can imagine!
The overall sturdiness of this setup isn’t quite on par with some of the other options out there around the same price point, but it’ll definitely do the job for those with a gear or belt driven wheel and potentially even a set of load cell pedals.
The frame is durable, and the seat itself is mighty comfortable. It’s compatible with major sim racing hardware brands, and it’s designed to be easy to set up. While not portable like the Playseat Challenge, it does offer a decent alternative, albeit at a higher price point.
- Solid build quality
- Highly adjustable
- Easy to set up
- Quite expensive
Summary Of The Best Playseat Challenge Alternatives
|Next Level Racing F-GT Lite||Very adjustable option|
Strong and portable
|There is a fair bit of flex|
|Openwheeler GEN3||Highly adjustable and comfortable|
Easy to set up
|Quite a low seating position|
|Playseat Evolution||Nice racing aesthetic|
Durable with a foldable seat
|Wheel mount can get in the way of the pedals|
Not the most portable option
|Next Level Racing Challenger||Strong construction|
Comfortable and reclinable seat
|Not that portable|
|Playseat Forza Motorsport||Solid seat with a premium feel|
Adjustable and foldable
|No gear shifter mount included|
Wheel mount can get in the way of the pedals
|GTR Simulator GTA||Very well built|
Adjustable and easy to set up
|Quite an expensive choice|
What To Look For In A Sim Racing Seat Similar To The Playseat Challenge
Portability is important for when you want to pack up your sim racing setup and store it for later, or if you want to transport it somewhere in the future. Usually with portability comes a sacrifice in the comfort department, as a thinner material is required to allow the seat to fold with ease. So, make sure to balance how portable it is with how comfortable it will be to use for extended racing sessions.
It’s important that the seat you choose has the correct mounts in order to support the rest of your sim racing setup. Make sure that it has the appropriate mounts for your steering wheel and pedals, and if you want a gear shifter mount, try to find one with a mount included, or at least support for one in future (this is something the Playseat Challenge itself lacks).
Comfort is a big thing to take into account when choosing your Playseat alternative. You don’t want to be uncomfortable during long gaming sessions in your racing seat as it ruins the whole experience and breaks your immersion. Not only that, but an uncomfortable chair can be detrimental to your health if it doesn’t support proper posture.
Make sure there is sufficient padding and that the height and angle of the seat (and all mounts) is adjustable. If it’s not all that adjustable, then at least make sure its standard dimensions are suitable for your own.
The saying “you get what you pay for” is particularly appropriate when it comes to seats for sim racing, but there are plenty of very affordable ones out there that are comparable to, if not even better than, the Playseat challenge. For the absolute cheapest choice, check out the Next Level Racing Challenger.
The best Playseat Challenge alternative is the Next Level Racing F-GT Lite. It offers a similar experience while offering more customization options. Other good alternatives include the OpenWheeler GEN3 and the Playseat Evolution racing chair.