In order to take on the almost 9 thousand km (about 4,200 of special trials and the rest for the trip) in the Dakar race, the most famous endurance race in the world, most of the cars have custom designed braking systems. With thirty years of experience in the race that was once called the Paris-Dakar, Brembo will be at the 2018 edition as supplier for about ten cars that are favourites for the top spots.
The braking systems for the Dakar stand out from those used in rallies because of their sturdiness and duration.
After all, a WRC reaches weights of up to 1,200 kg and is driven with the driver constantly using the brakes to correct trajectories.
On the other hand, the cars in the Dakar race weigh 3 tonnes and the drivers must also take on sections that last dozens of kilometres without touching the brakes.
However, when the route requires sudden braking of the Dakar competitors, for example from 190 km/h to 60 km/h, the force demanded of the braking system is decidedly greater than that of a rally car.
The result is a high energy peak that risks warping the discs.
To prevent this problem, Brembo engineers have worked on floating in order to allow the disc to dilate.
Because the Dakar routes alternated all types of terrain (from extremely fine sand to dirt, going over rocky terrain as well), Brembo braking systems do not have any protruding parts that could be easily damaged.
Furthermore, the extreme weather conditions (from the cold at 4,600 metres of altitude in the Andes to the suffocating heat of the southern deserts) require a braking system that works perfectly in an extremely wide temperature range.
In order to prevent drops in performance during the Marathon Leg (1,271 km that must be covered in two days without the possibility of working on the vehicle at the end of the first day) the Racing pads are 164 mm long as opposed to the 140 mm used in rallies.
Made on a ceramic base, the RB350 and RB340 compounds guarantee the highest possible resistance on the market to fading and wear, making a considerable contribution to significantly containing the disc temperature and the fluid in the caliper.
The RB350 stand out for the very high initial bite, whereas the RB340 boast extremely modular braking performance. The 6-piston calipers are made from aluminium and are air cooled, or in more complex situations they are water cooled. For the 2016 edition Brembo has also made ultralight discs in order to reduce weights compared to last year.