It is still around, the mechanical connection from the lever to the performing component. Whereas the disc brake on the rear wheels is being used more often, the drum brake is still used in smaller cars and of course, also in vererans.
The above diagram shows a handbrake which is integrated into a hydraulic drum brake. The spreading nowadays, mostly takes place with the help of Bowden cables, it's force is applied by the hand brake lever through a mechanical compensation. This compensation may - as shown in the picture - be a two-sided lever or a cable guide allowing the point of application to be moved. To a certain extent, this mechanism balances out small differences in the play between right and left by itself.The spreading lever is pulled, with a fairly strong leverage, to the left by the handbrake cable which lies inside the spring. The spreading lever is connected by a rod to the left brake shoe, ensuring that when one is applied, both brake shoes are activated. Inside the rod, a self-adjusting mechanism is indicated. Should the play become too large, it is lengthened (in this case, it is made up of two parts). 03/12