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Brembo predicts further shift toward brake-by-wire tech

by Justin King

The company says \'mechatronic\' systems will help simplify vehicle architecture.

Brembo is apparently preparing for several shifts in the braking industry as automakers explore electronic by-wire systems and regenerative braking for EVs and hybrids.

Brake-by-wire tech has been slow to arrive in standard production cars, with the new Alfa Romeo Giulia among the list of exceptions. Brembo's North America chief, Daniel Sandberg, suggests 'mecatronic' systems will become increasingly popular in the next decade, however, as automakers attempt to electrify everything in the car.

"You are going to see a slow conversion, like from drum to disc brakes, and since brakes are a safety product, there will be redundancy," the executive said in a recent interview with Car and Driver.

Brembo welcomes the shift, as brake-by-wire provides the ability to custom tune the brake pedal feel and travel to suit the driver's preference or different drive modes. There are a few lingering issues, however, that suppliers are still working out.

"We will need to work on the algorithms, as electric systems tend to display an on/off characteristic," Sandberg admitted. "There will be a lot of work on the feel."

Brembo believes EVs and autonomous vehicles will still maintain demand for high-performance brakes, albeit with longer service intervals.