Andriasang has a report that Hori, the Japan-based gaming peripheral company, is making an accessory specifically for Mario Kart 7 on the Nintendo 3DS. It is, of course, a steering wheel. You’ll find one shot to the right and a few more in the gallery at the base of this post.

Nintendo‘s extremely successful (though definitely not my favorite) Wii version of Mario Kart came to retail bundled with a popular steering wheel accessory of its own. Motion control is obviously a well-stated feature for the Wii, so the wheel made complete sense with that release.

Hori is designing an officially licensed product here, as the gold Nintendo seal on the top left corner of the box indicates, so it’s not like this is a one-off extra being made by some company looking to cash-in.

We will say that this wheel–or “handle,” as written on the box to the right–is a bit more attractive and sensical than the Slidepad that was revealed for Japan nearly a month ago. Though, we’ll let you comment on whether or not it’s something that you’d actually be interested in buying.

This wheel will officially make use of the motion control capabilities within the Nintendo 3DS. It will, however, render the 3D illusion on the device pointless when in use. In order to maintain that 3D magic trick, players have to hold the 3DS in the sweet spot in front of their faces. Twisting and turning the unit in order to steer during a kart race will absolutely break the 3D effect.

This peripheral is currently only slated for release in Japan, though we wouldn’t be too surprised if the western world saw it come soon as well. It will cost around 1,280 yen, (roughly $17) and will launch along with Mario Kart 7.

[via GamePro, source Andriasang]