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AP Racing

We recently worked with Truckin’ Magazine on some high speed brake testing, putting the AP Racing BBK designed by STILLEN to the ultimate test at El Toro Marine Base.

Truckin’ editor Dan Ward pushed their 2004 GMC Sierra “Project Novakane” to the limit with repeated 80-0 mph stops beginning with the factory setup, swapped brake systems, and repeated the aggressive testing on the truck after outfitting the AP Racing setup onto the truck.

Below is an excert from the article with performance data from their extensive testing:

Truckin’ Magazine – October 2010 Issue

“Rather than test the truck from 60 mph, we hit the ‘whoa’ pedal at 80 mph, after all, do you really drive 60 mph on the freeway? Factory braking performance was dreadful, as a combination of grooved rotors and newish pads made for chassis vibrations when stopping and a weak pedal. After bolting on the 20-inch wheels and tires to the Sierra, the sticky Nitto tires actually improved the stopping distances, which confused us at first, but then we released the overall weight of the new wheels and tires wasn’t much heavier than our OE combo.

GM touted the redesigned ’99+ fullsize trucks as having the best brakes in their long history of building trucks. That’s nice marketing hype, but GPS data acquisition doesn’t lie and the new AP Racing brakes are the double-D cups to the OE’s training bra. We weren’t surprised to have better overall stopping power, after all, that’s what we expected from a company with a rich racing heritage, but what did surprise us was the pedal feel. Without being touchy, the brake pedal is now very linear with minimal inputs doing an impressive job of bringing the 4,300-pound truck to a standstill. As expected, the aggressive brake pads are heavy on the dust, which provides us another excuse to wash the wheels/tires more often. This upgrade was expensive, but unlike in many cases, you actually get what you pay for from Stillen.

With the AP kit bolted on, we made several 80-0 mph test runs and came away with an average of 226 ft, more than 144 ft than better than stock. That’s equivalent to stopping in only 5.56 school buses or basically stopping before going through an entire intersection and saving the lives of more than 350 kids in those buses.

Also, the green AP heat paint that was applied to the stock rotors burned white, meaning they exceeded 430 degrees Celcius during hard braking, but the new AP rotors didn’t burn through the green paint. This translates into the drilled holes and vents doing their job by keeping the rotor surface cooler, longer. If safety and performance are high on your list, bringing your truck to an immediate halt doesn’t get much better than with AP Racing’s bolt-on big brakes.”

You can read the full article here, and below are some images from the story:
Truckin’ Magazine Project Novakane Part III: AP Racing

News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

STILLEN OFFERS NEW AP RACING
2008-2010 BMW M3 (E9x)
FRONT AND REAR BIG BRAKE KITS

Features innovative Strap Drive System for road and track day applications

Costa Mesa, Calif. AP Racing, the braking technology choice of professional race teams worldwide (including Rahal Letterman IMSA ALMS GT2 M3, BMW Motorsports FIA GT2 M3, etc), has introduced front and rear Big Brake System for the 2008-2010 BMW M3 (E9x). Available from the Brake Pros product division of STILLEN, these new brake upgrades fit most 18″ and 19″ OE wheels. They are compatible with OE ABS, traction control, stability systems and factory brake master cylinder.

Front systems may be ordered with AP Racing’s newly updated 6-piston CP5555 calipers finished in black (AP7100), red (AP7100R) — or — limited-edition Comp Gray (AP7100G). For optimum mechanical and thermal balance, complimentary rear systems are advised. The rear systems are supplied with AP Racing’s new CP5306 4-piston calipers in matching colors (AP7150 / AP7150R / AP7150G).

Manufactured for maximum stopping power and minimum brake fade, the kit offers high performance braking capability with race proven technology and comes complete with calipers, rotors, brake pads, coated stainless steel braided brake lines and all necessary mounting hardware for immediate bolt-on.

Two-piece modular rotors float on an aluminum hat and have 72 directionally curved vanes to maximize cooling in extreme brake situations. Both front and rear rotors are available in a cross-drilled and slotted pattern for an aggressive pad bite and better face cooling or can be purchased slotted only for aggressive track use. The AP Racing Strap Drive System has been developed for both road and track day applications. It uses a series of stainless steel straps to locate the disc to the mounting bell, producing a flexible coupling between the hub and the disc faces. This allows the disc to run true in the caliper under all conditions and also permits the disc to expand and contract without being restricted.

Strong, durable and designed to withstand any punishment, AP Racing Brake calipers are manufactured with a lightweight, pressure cast aluminum alloy 2-piece body and finished with a hard anodized 2-part paint finish. This 2-piece design is more rigid than commonly available monoblock calipers. Differential piston bores eliminate pad taper and maximize braking efficiency, and the anti-rattle clip eliminates pad knock and noise. A fixed radial mount ensures minimal caliper flex for the best available brake feel under all operating conditions.

To learn more about AP Racing Big Brake upgrade kits for the 2008-2010 BMW M3 and other high performance vehicles, visit www.stillen.com, e-mail pr@stillen.com, or call (888) 221-2012.

For high resolution images, please view the main Press Release here.

# # #

About STILLEN

Developed by enthusiasts for enthusiasts, STILLEN is a manufacturer and distributor of premium high performance products for late model import and domestic vehicles. Founded in 1986 by renowned professional driver and race car builder, Steve Millen, STILLEN incorporates cutting-edge race proven technology and advanced aerodynamic designs into the company’s proprietary performance and appearance product lines. Millen is known worldwide for achieving the greatest number of wins in IMSA GT history during the course of an impressive 30-year racing career. Family owned and operated, STILLEN branded products include exhaust systems and components, superchargers, fuel systems and components, brake kits and components, and urethane body styling products. In addition, STILLEN is an online reseller of many high performance products for late model cars and trucks, import and domestic, and creator of unique, one-of-a-kind performance project vehicles.  For more information, visit www.STILLEN.com.

For Further Information, Contact:

Josh Biggers
Marketing
STILLEN
(714) 540-5566, ext. 157
jbiggers@stillen.com

A little while back we had a chance to meet up with Matt Farah and his awesome crew from TheSmokingTire.com and show them around the buildings here at STILLEN.

Matt and Steve then jumped in the bright orange STILLEN GT-R and took a run through some of the local canyons.  See below for the video!

Matt started The Smoking Tire video series last year, and previous to that was the driving force behind Garage419. Two minutes with him is all it takes to recognize that he’s a true car enthusiast, and he’s as genuine as he comes across in his videos. Be sure to check out and subscribe to his video series here.

This Strap Drive System has been developed by AP Racing both for Road and Race applications. The standard fitment brake discs on many performance cars can suffer from brake vibrations caused by disc distortion. This generally occurs on fast road and track installations.

On many performance cars the typical standard brake disc will be a heavy duty ventilated single piece casting. Couple this type of rigid disc to a standard hub and wheel bearing and the result is any hub distortion / run out will transfer onto the disc brake faces. This eventually results in brake vibrations, usually picked up through the steering wheel.

The AP Racing Strap Drive System offers a new take on the floating systems already in the market place. Strap Drive uses a series of stainless steel straps to locate the disc to the mounting bell, producing a flexible coupling between the hub and the disc faces. This allows the disc to run true in the caliper under all conditions and also permits the disc to expand and contract without being restricted.

Some current replacement discs in the market place have evolved from Motorsport applications, they typically use a drive bobbin to provide some disc float and were devised to reduce pad knock off on race cars. This system can work on a road application but there are some major drawbacks that the Strap Drive has overcome with its simplicity.

Bobbin float discs rely on a series of drive bobbins moving freely in drive slots. This movement can create wear during service and promote noise. The slots can fill up with road / brake debris causing them to seize. AP Racings strap couplings can’t suffer from any of these drawbacks. Therefore Service life, brake noise and also brake pedal travel are all improved.


Benefits / Features:

  • Compared with single piece discs the disc is de-coupled from hub, this allows disc to align itself perfectly within the caliper.
  • Improved pedal feel and brake response as a result of improved disc alignment within caliper.
  • Improved pedal feel at elevated temperatures as disc rotor is able to expand in a controlled manner with little influence from the disc mounting. This greatly reduces disc coning.
  • Controlled axial float of disc rotor reduces brake ‘knock-off’ which can result in an inconsistent pedal feel.
  • No free moving parts means that the wear problems normally associated with floating disc designs is not present.
  • No free moving parts means that there are no clearances to become clogged with debris and corrosion which would prevent a conventional floating disc from operating correctly.
  • No free moving parts means no unwanted mechanical noise from discs.
  • Disc rotor and strap sub assembly available as service item for cost effective servicing.
  • Successfully used in race applications.

Important note: When replacing brake pads with strap drive discs fitted, do not push the pistons back in to the caliper by use of a lever against the discs. If this is done then the disc straps may be distorted and this can cause disc runout, resulting in possible brake vibration.

Steve Millen and the R&D crew here at STILLEN are at full throttle wrapping up the build of the STILLEN GT-R, and Road & Track has been continuing their great video coverage of the build and testing.

These three videos bring the total to 16 videos surrounding the STILLEN GT-R and the build for the Targa Newfoundland Rally which is in mid-September and quickly approaching.

The office was buzzing today, as development continues on braking improvements to the R35 Nissan GT-R.  Here’s a teaser shot of the upcoming STILLEN / AP Racing Carbon Ceramic Brake Upgrades currently in R&D here at STILLEN.

STILLEN AP Racing Carbon Ceramic Brakes Nissan GT-R


This setup will be used on the STILLEN GT-R being campaigned at the 2009 Targa Newfoundland Rally this September.

More information is coming soon.. be sure to follow our RSS Feed for up-to-date information as we release it.

We are sorry we haven’t had a chance to get some of the cool things we’ve been working on up, we have a bunch of new content that’s in the can, we’ll be working feverishly to get that up.

In the meantime we had some GT-R’s out to the STILLEN workshop this morning, and while we had some of the new AP Racing Curved Vane Rotors out, thought it might be a good time to grab the camera and shoot some video with our Brake Manager Chris Bernal (with little to no warning.. sorry Chris!)



These rotors are an excellent upgrade for anyone serious about performance on their GT-R, and correct the problems associated with cracking cross-drilled holes and wear issues of the OEM rotors.  Bonus is they are half the cost of the factory replacements, with the improved performance and longevity.

These rotors are now available in a Slotted or J-Hook rotor face configuration, depending on the goal of the owner.  More information on the AP rotors can be found on our previous blog post on these rotors.

STILLEN is excited to announce the availability of select AP Racing brake systems in a limited-edition caliper color – Competition Gray.

STILLEN AP Racing Competition Gray Big Brake Kit

AP Racing Competition Gray Big Brake Kit

Racing fans will notice this color is exactly what full-blown race calipers from AP Racing look like. But unlike the race-only hardware, these are built for every day use with secondary dust seals, anti-rattle clips and extra corrosion protection. Finally – the best of both worlds with no compromises!

As top dog in Formula 1 (634 wins!), NASCAR (2008 championship in Sprint Cup and Camping World Series), World Rally Championship (WRC), LeMans prototypes, Super GT, World Touring Car Championship, Moto GP and more, no other brake equipment company has done more to help drivers win than AP Racing. Don’t be fooled by lesser imitators as this is the genuine article.

That is why you will find AP Racing road car brakes as original equipment on cars made by Bugatti, Koenigsegg, Lotus, McLaren, Aston Martin, Holden HSV, Noble, Rossion, Ultima, Caparo, Ascari, Tramontana, Spyker, Pagani, Morgan, Farbio, Seat, Zolfe, Gumpert, Caterham and other limited, high-end exotic supercars. They could have any brakes in the world and chose AP Racing. So can you.

And, as you will notice in the detailed pictures below, the front 6-piston calipers are the first ones to arrive with the latest in improvements

AP Racing Competition Gray Calipers

AP Racing Competition Gray Calipers

  1. Relocation of bridge bolts: Experience gained by Radi-Cal racing caliper development is leading to stiffness improvements across many caliper models. This change improves the dynamic stiffness of the CP7040 caliper considerably.
  2. Now using external TORX-head bridge bolts: These highly engineered bolts allow better and more consistent torque when assembling calipers.
  3. Revised caliper face: AP Racing redesigned the face of the caliper for a more up-to-date look along with some weight reduction. In COMPETITION GRAY, they look awesome!

Interesting note for you Top Gear fans.. AP Racing are the factory brakes for the top 6 of 10 fastest cars on the Top Gear Lap Chart:

  1. Gumpert Apollo (AP Racing)
  2. Ascari A10 (AP Racing)
  3. Koenigsegg CCX (AP Racing)
  4. Pagani Zonda F (AP Racing)
  5. Caterham R500 (AP Racing)
  6. Bugatti Veyron (AP Racing)
  7. Maserati MC12 (Brembo)
  8. Ferrari Enzo (Ferrari / Brembo)
  9. Ariel Atom (Alcon)
  10. Lamborghini LP560 (Brembo)

And if Top Gear hadn’t refused to test the Ultima GTR.. they might have found as much as 4 seconds quicker on the same track, again with the help of a full AP Racing setup.

Competition Gray Limited Edition Calipers Available In The Following Kits:

Front 6-Piston AP Racing Big Brake Kit

  • 2003-2007 Infiniti G35 Coupe
  • 2003-2008 Infiniti G35 Sedan
  • 2008-2009 Infiniti G37 Coupe
  • 2009-2009 Infiniti G37 Sedan
  • 2001-2007 Mitsubishi EVO VII-IX
  • 2008-2009 Mitsubishi EVO X
  • 1990-1996 Nissan 300ZX
  • 2003-2008 Nissan 350Z
  • 2009-2010 Nissan 370Z (coming soon)
  • 1989-1998 Nissan Skyline GT-R
  • 2002-2009 Subaru Impreza WRX / WRX STi

Rear 4-Piston AP Racing Big Brake Kit

  • 2003-2007 Infiniti G35 Coupe
  • 2003-2008 Infiniti G35 Sedan
  • 2008-2009 Infiniti G37 Coupe
  • 2001-2007 Mitsubishi EVO VII-IX
  • 2008-2009 Mitsubishi EVO X
  • 1990-1996 Nissan 300ZX
  • 2003-2008 Nissan 350Z
  • 2009-2010 Nissan 370Z (coming soon)
  • 1989-1998 Nissan Skyline GT-R
  • 2002-2007 Subaru Impreza WRX / WRX STi (coming soon)
  • 2008-2009 Subaru Impreza WRX / WRX STI

STILLEN and AP Racing are proud to announce the release of upgraded Curved Vane Front and Rear Brake Rotors for the R35 Nissan GT-R.  These AP Racing R35 GT-R Brake Rotor are a track-proven upgrade to the OE Brembo components.

STILLEN AP Racing Nissan GT-R R35 Upgraded Curved Vane Brake Rotors

The STILLEN / AP Racing Curved Vane Rotors utilize a curved-vane core (48 vanes) which allow for better thermal management, providing improved cooling over the OE pillar vane design.  They also have 12 curved slots which improve pad bite and not prone to cracking under severe use, which the OE rotors are plagued by.

Nissan GT-R Brake Rotor Cutaway

The need for these rotors became evident quickly when GT-R owners in the UK began touring various race tracks, and having issues with standard discs only lasting 2-3 track days at the maximum.  AP Racing was contacted, and within a couple of weeks rotors were available and testing began.

Results were all positive, with no signs of cracking, and consistency of pedal and performance were reported.

Highlights from the STILLEN R35 GT-R Brake Rotor Product Page:

  • Top quality, proprietary iron alloy with multi-stage thermal processing.
  • Curved-vane core (48 vanes) for better thermal management under extreme use. More expensive to make, but improved cooling over the OE pillar vane design.
  • 12 curved slots (not drilled!) to improve pad bite and resist cracking under severe use.
  • Precisely balanced at high RPM for smooth operation at any vehicle speed.
  • Friction faces finished on the latest generation twin-turning equipment, better DTV (Disc Thickness Variation) and less runout than typical double-disc grinding machines.
  • Includes fresh hardware for track-day confidence every day.
  • Added bonus: Even priced less than the standard OE discs!

More product information and pricing available here.