Although at first it looks like an attempt to slyly introduce the electric brake, or as if it is an almost unnecessary extra
for luxury cars, after a closer look however, it turns out to be indeed, competent and functional. Give a thought to the many driving school hours that novice drivers spend trying to master the art of pulling off on a hill
without rolling backwards. Now this is done for him/her through a control device, which - regardless of whether it is an automatic or manual gearbox - releases the brake at exactly the right moment. Here are only two of
the further possible examples: Automatic braking and the withdrawal of the gas-pedal in the event of a tail-back, controlled downhill driving in mountainous areas.
The following is only one example of the construction possibilities. The cable for the hand-brake (figure 2) is pulled by a computer controlled hydraulic unit (figure 1) instead of the hand-brake lever. Fundamentally, the
function of the hand-brake can also be taken over by the ABS/ESP-system. Whereby, the difficulty here is, that the
hand- and foot-brake must function independently of one another. Alternatively, the electric motor works directly or through a small belt-drive on the brake caliper. Using this solution, not only must the complete brake
caliper be reconstucted, the weight of the electric motor also increases the unsprung mass on the wheel.
If the automatic version of a vehicle has this type of hand-brake, this must not necessarily be the case with a manual gearbox. The system can only really be efficient if all vehicles could only be moved backwards when
the reverse gear is engaged. 02/10