Cars Why you’re going to love auto-hold brakes (or you already do)

20:39  18 april  2017
20:39  18 april  2017 Source:

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Why you’re going to love auto-hold brakes (or you already do) © Carbuyer Why you’re going to love auto-hold brakes (or you already do)

Of all the new technology on offer in modern cars – from self-driving gizmos to gesture-control infotainment systems – one of the most important and underrated is so simple and straightforward it’s a wonder it’s taken so long to start becoming a common feature.

Auto-hold brakes are fantastic. When this system is fitted, a simple prod of the brake pedal will prevent a car from moving off when stopped in traffic, leaving you to relax with your feet off the pedals. A light on the dashboard tells you the system is active and holding your car stationary, while it releases the brakes as soon as you press the accelerator.

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If all this sounds like an unnecessary indulgence, next time you’re in a lengthy traffic jam, take note of how much time you spend with your foot on the brake. Once you’ve become used to the idea of brakes that keep themselves applied, you may find yourself expecting all cars to have such a system.

Mercedes customers have known this for some time, as some of the firm’s cars have featured auto-holding brakes for a decade or so – but more and more manufacturers are now cottoning on to their advantages.

While early auto-hold brakes worked exclusively with automatic gearboxes, modern systems work with manuals as well. Most operate in conjunction with a car’s electronic stability programme and anti-lock brakes, so don’t require fitting new and expensive kit – although the car will usually need to come with an electronic parking brake.

New models from the Volkswagen, Audi, SEAT and Skoda commonly feature auto-hold, assuming they come with an electronic handbrake. VW’s system “retains the last applied braking pressure”, so if you’re waiting on a hill, it’s a good idea to give the brakes a solid shove.

It’s also worth pointing out auto-hold brakes are different from hill-hold assistance: the latter will only hold the brakes for a couple of seconds when you’re on an incline to prevent the car rolling back in the time it takes you to move your foot from the brake to the accelerator. If in doubt, consult your car’s handbook or contact your dealer.

Haas F1 switch brake supplier ahead of Russian Grand Prix .
Following on from a successful test in Bahrain, Haas Formula 1 team has confirmed they will make the switch from Brembo to Carbone Industrie brakes for the Russian Grand Prix. They suffered through constant issues with the Brembo system throughout their inaugural season, the most notable problem came with Romain Grosjean crashing out of the Malaysian Grand Prix after a brake failure sent him into the gravel of the final corner on lap seven. The American team will try out the new brakes at a race weekend for the first time this season, team principal Guenther Steiner is keen to ensure brakes are another problem taken away from the team’s list of potential issues further down the line. Steiner spoke to saying: “At the moment we have all options open to us. “We need to see how we do in FP1, and then we’ll see what we’ll do for the rest. Hopefully, we can stay on them, because in testing they were performing well. “The drivers were happy with them, and they were consistent, that’s the main thing. We want to get to the point where brakes are no issue anymore.” Having run the Carbone Industrie system in the Bahrain test, Kevin Magnussen gave positive feedback on the new material adding: “We’ll continue with what we tried in the Bahrain test and see how it goes. “It’s always good to try different things, and we felt that there were some positives with the CI brakes, and we’ll continue like that. And we can always go back.

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