Journal: Which Classic Car Was Fitted With The Best Steering Wheel?

Which Classic Car Was Fitted With The Best Steering Wheel?

By Michael Banovsky
June 8, 2016
24 comments

I grew up in a house that had a Gilles Villeneuve-edition Momo Prototipo steering wheel fitted to the “nice” car, the Porsche 914 2.0-litre. When my dad sold the car, he liked the wheel so much that he kept it on his wall—and when I found the car and bought it back, the first order of business was getting a new Prototipo to replace whatever the cheapo junk was that had been installed in its place.

Given my upbringing, I have no choice in the matter: it’s the reference I use to judge other steering wheels by. Available in countless styles and variations—there’s even a Magnus Walker one—the Prototipo has been helping sports and racing cars steer for decades.

From an ergonomics standpoint, I can’t get a grip on old plastic Bakelite steering wheels (but they often look great). Wood is fine, but requires wearing gloves pretty much all of the time. Vinyl…are you kidding?

I find that it’s fun to research steering wheels and scour the web for examples of unique and interesting ones. Which classic do you think was fitted with the best wheel—and what’s your favorite steering wheel upgrade?

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Derelict
Derelict
6 years ago

A ‘fat man’ steering wheel will always be my favorite wheel.

woodrim
woodrim
6 years ago

As one of the world’s biggest steering wheel snobs, I do have some opinions. I won’t mention anything Momo for consideration of the (young) author.

There have been some beautiful steering wheels over the years with many from the maker Nardi in the early years; certainly before his death in 1966, but farter back were the more beautiful ones. Additionally, and my personal favorite, was fitted to the 1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Villa dEste by Touring. A very lovely and elegant wheel. Among the Porsche 356 was the Carrera 2 with teak and ebony rim. The British had quite a few as well, but the Italian wheels had a certain class. Add guilloché to the spokes and it’s even more special. I could go down a long list. One other might be the G. Giunta available as an option (rare) on Lamborghini 350GT.

Mike L.
lempertwheels.com

Chris-D
Chris-D
6 years ago

Stop the presses! Yngwie J. Malmsteen(you know who you are) has once again graciously decided to speak to us on several critical areas to let us know, in case there was ever any real doubt, that none of us, including the people who put this website together, are worthy of his eloquence, insight, nuanced perceptions, sophistication, or simply sharing the air he breathes. how dare any of you philistines ask such questions of the common man! How dare any of us common men(and ladies, too) think we are worthy to share our thoughts on such critical topics as your preferred choice of steering wheel!! The well being of the civilized world hinges on these discussions!!! Save us Yngwie J. Malmsteen!!!!

Chris Ribbe
Chris Ribbe
6 years ago

a newby to the Petrolicious forum, but enjoyed GuitarS’s comments – witty … disrespectful… entertaining.
would be missed.

subject: 356 wheel indeed. always liked Iso Grifo steering wheel.
also…

Darel Matthews
Darel Matthews
6 years ago
Reply to  Chris Ribbe

The answer is always Grifo.

Darel Matthews
Darel Matthews
6 years ago

Hands down Porsche 356.

Linda N Brian Schick
Linda N Brian Schick
6 years ago

The wood wheel on my ’82 Alfa GTV 6 coupe.

Drew Schumann
Drew Schumann
6 years ago

I too enjoy wooden wheels, especially one of Nardi’s creations, and hardly ever wear gloves. So I’m honestly curious as to the comment in the article about “needing to wear gloves almost all the time.” What is the reasoning about that?

Dennis White
Dennis White
6 years ago

Love the old school wheels with the horn rims on the Alfa Giulietta and the Mercedes 190 SL.

Rikbrandt
Rikbrandt
6 years ago

I agree about the bakelite wheels…I know the purists call for the original wheel for a restoration to be proper…but it’s my car, and I want to enjoy how it looks, as well as how it feels in my hands…and putting on the leather gloves is such a lovely ritual…

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago

Sincere apologies for the duplicate comments below. I have no idea how that could have occurred. Kindly delete duplicates if possible. Thanks

Patrick Peters
Patrick Peters
6 years ago
Reply to  B Bop

or not… : -)

Nate
Nate
6 years ago

I’ve always liked the early Petri Banjo wheels seen on the 356’s

Dennis White
Dennis White
6 years ago

Somebody’s off his meds again!

FH944
FH944
6 years ago

“Yeah … thats worthwhile … so pardon me while I go do something more constructive and meaningful … like watching the sunrise .. the storms coming in .. reading a good book .. playing/performing good music .. spending time with my wife and friends .. reading a worthwhile site with reasonably accurate information etc” …. that’s why you comment on literally every article on this page? You must live a miserable life. I honestly have thought over the past few weeks that I have pity on you , for how negative you are. It must be excruciating to wake up and think, ahhhh I’m going to be as negative as I can today.

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger
6 years ago

Now why in the world would I once again offer up my opinion on much of anything when history has shown doing so for the Snowflake , Rube , Dilettante , Trust Fund Baby , Poser , Suburban Urban Hipster wanna be crowd is tantamount to offering up the proverbial Pearls to Pigs ?

e.g. Give a solid well founded opinion based on facts as well as decades of first hand experience not to mention the experience of many others and get hit with a face full of pre adolescent snarks … mis information and criticism from a bunch of virtual vaporware posers pretending they know anything about classic cars .. racing or repairs and maintenance

Not to mention my filling up needed digital space by doing the ” Shadow Work ” for the site necessary for its survival lest it become another virtual InstaFamous/InstaBroke victim [ seen your bottom line gents 😉 ]

Yeah … thats worthwhile … so pardon me while I go do something more constructive and meaningful … like watching the sunrise .. the storms coming in .. reading a good book .. playing/performing good music .. spending time with my wife and friends .. reading a worthwhile site with reasonably accurate information etc

Nate
Nate
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

Don’t let the door hit you on your way out.

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.

Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !

B Bop
B Bop
6 years ago
Reply to  Guitar Slinger

You constantly denigrate those that are happily leading their chosen lives, and then there is your” wanna be” comment. The real wanna be on this site is you, Guitar Hack. A sad wanna be automotive journalist that has obviously lived a bitterly disappointing life of always being on the outside looking in. Oh, is that not true ? Go back and read some of your utterly ridiculous posts for a reality check, Guitar Hack!
Yesterday, you seemed a little hurt when I called you “my favorite tool”. Please take comfort in the fact that you are in good company with my other two favorite tools, Donald Trump and Kanye West.
Time to give it up Guitar Hack. You aint fooling anybody but your sad self.
Cheers !