A brake disc may look like any other car part. But like any car safety expert will tell you, the disc alone is more often than not, the main difference between life and death when you have to suddenly brake to save your life. But like you already know, not all brake discs are the same. Take the Porsche brake disc for instance. Simple in design yet extremely effective even at the car’s maximum speed. Strangely though, there is much more into Porsche disc brakes than just the design element. Read on to learn more.
The Porsche disc brake has evolved ever since the first Porsche with disc brakes entered the automotive market was back in 1962. Annular disc brakes, as they were referred to back then, are still available. They feature brake calipers that grip the dick from the inside. This allows large disc diameters and makes it easy for the disc to halt motion. Then came the internally vented brakes in 1966. Unlike annular disk brakes, they featured cooling openings between the surfaces. These openings were designed to dissipate heat that was generated while braking. These first two brakes paved way for subsequent improvements which highlighted Porsche as not just a luxury model but also an effective and safe mode.
1974 saw the birth of cross drilled brake discs. They came along with holes which ensured the brake pad grit and water was dispersed. This greatly improved responsiveness especially in wet weather conditions. It wasn’t long before cross drilled brake discs were improved. Changes were made just 3 years later in 1977 when Porsche introduced four piston brake calipers. The disc could easily keep up with increased engine power. It was also good in both dry and wet weather conditions.
Then came anti-lock brakes in 1983 which were aptly referred to as ABS. It was and still is, special in so many ways. It was designed to prevent wheels from locking during full braking. This is not what made the discs unique though. You could brake at full speed and the car would still retain its steerability.
There was only one major improvement during this era. This happened in 1996 when the monobloc aluminum brake caliper saw the limelight. They are sometimes referred to as the pioneers of the Boxster generation. Again, the design here was simple yet effective mainly because the four piston monobloc fixed calipers were manufactured from just a single piece. This was deliberate so as to improve heat dispersion and enhance safety
This is by all means Porsche’s golden era as far as discs and the braking system are concerned. So much has changed for the better. First came the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB) IN 2001. It was a marvel to look at solely because the disc was 50 percent lighter than the gray cast iron disc with compatible braking powder. This does not just reduce unsprung mass as many Porsche owners think. It also enhances driving comfort as well as brake performance. Then the ultimate brake disc came along in 2015 – Ten Piston Brake Calipers. It is still in use today and it is as you may have guessed, unique in so many ways. For instance, they were for the very first time on the front axle. They work in alongside ceramic brake discs with standard diameters of 420mm to ensure the highest fading stability and excellent responsiveness even at extremely high speeds.