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base Brake VS z51 Brake - driving feel

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  • base Brake VS z51 Brake - driving feel

    Does the Z51’s Brake create a noticeable difference when you do spirited driving on normal street roads? (No track use).

    Is there only benefit to have Z51 Brake vs. non-Z51 base Brake ?

    can a non-Z51 base model be equipped with Z51 Brake calipers?
    vcappp
    Contributing Member
    Last edited by vcappp; 03-03-2021, 12:07 AM.

  • #2
    The C8’s standard brakes are really good , will suffice excellently for 98% of all circumstances including very spirited daily driving on curvy, Corvette core ring roads.

    If however you were going down from a 14,000 pass in Colorado on a curvy country road, pushing the car to your limits, braking hard as you approach the turns, yes there would be a difference that is noticeable (but that would be a 2% example).

    Can you change pads and/or rotors down the road in a standard C8 (or a Z51)? For sure. As to whether the Z51 OEM rotor is the way one would want to go for that upgrade, that I do not know. If I were in that circumstance, I would first call and talk to Ken at KNS brakes and seek out some probably way cheaper and just as good alternatives that are not Z51 pads or rotors (even if the later would fit).
    GBA Black; HTO Twilight/Tension interior; Z51 & Mag Ride; E60 lift; 5VM visible carbon fiber package; 5ZZ high wing; FA5 interior vis CF; ZZ3 engine appearance; 3LT; Q8T Spectra Gray Tridents; J6N Edge Red Calipers; SNG Edge Red Hashmarks; VQK Splash Guards; RCC Edge Red engine cover; VJR illuminated sill plates. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 23 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

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    • #3
      The biggest advantage of the Z51 brakes, with bigger rotors and larger pads, is probably better fade resistance. But except in the very rare circumstance like that described by John, you'll have a really, really hard time getting the base brakes to fade on the street. If you're driving hard enough to get the brakes to fade, you really need to get off the street and onto a track.

      The other advantage to the Z51 brakes is that the monobloc calipers are going to be somewhat more rigid than the ones on the base, which will improve brake feel a bit when braking very hard. Again, mostly an advantage on the track when you can expect to be braking at the limit multiple times per lap.

      I'm pretty sure the summer tires on the Z51 make a bigger difference in braking performance, on the street, than the brakes themselves. And even that difference is pretty small.

      As for upgrading the base brakes to the Z51 setup, you could probably do that. I know of a couple of people who did that on a C7. But as John suggests, there are probably cheaper solutions that are just as good or better.
      Delivered 5/29!: Scarlet Fever 2021 2LT HTC, Red Mist Metallic Tintcoat, two-tone Naturalw/ suede inserts, Mag Ride, Performance Exhaust, MRR 755 Gunmetal wheels

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      • #4
        Thanks for the answers meyerweb and John.

        Just curious, if Z51 Brake calipers can be installed on a non-z51 model c8, then, does the z51 brake calipers needs the z51 “rotor” too? Or does the base non-z51 rotor can take the z51 brake calipers without replacing the non-z51 rotor to the z51 rotor? i mean that can the z51 brake calipers be installed together with non-z51 rotor in the non-z51 model c8 ?

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        • #5
          I'm pretty certain that you can NOT do that, as the rotor sizes are different. IMO, if you're doing this, you should swap everything out together, as they are made to work together.
          Brian Huber
          Previous Corvettes
          2002 Z06 - SCCA autocross car - 58SSR ( Sold 4/20 )
          2003 Vert - Wife's stress relief/therapy car ( Sold 7/20 )

          2021 Coupe Black #6936 - Natural two-tone. 2LT, Mag-ride, NPP, Edge Red Calipers. NCM delivery ( Status 3000 as of 1/11/21 , 3300 as of 2/16/21, 3400 as of 3/9/21, 3800 as of 3/15/21, NCM Delivery 3/29)

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          • #6
            I can not add anything further than previous posts from a technical standpoint.. For 99 pct of us, Base equipment will suffice. Most upgrade to Z51 cause they can. I personally did not order the Z51 pkg as I knew I would not need it. At the last moment I did call my dealer to ad it and to my surprise he had submitted my order with a December allocation when he had initially told me my allocation would not come up till January. If I had to do it over again I would get the Z51 pkg, I did order NPP as that is a must. When I started with a 60K car and you get up to 90K you start thinking maybe I should hold back a little. But, no holds on my next car (ZO6) Do I, or anybody, need this power or braking power for street use, NO. We buy these cars, back to square one, cause we can.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ZORA 69 View Post
              I can not add anything further than previous posts from a technical standpoint.. For 99 pct of us, Base equipment will suffice. Most upgrade to Z51 cause they can. I personally did not order the Z51 pkg as I knew I would not need it. At the last moment I did call my dealer to ad it and to my surprise he had submitted my order with a December allocation when he had initially told me my allocation would not come up till January. If I had to do it over again I would get the Z51 pkg, I did order NPP as that is a must. When I started with a 60K car and you get up to 90K you start thinking maybe I should hold back a little. But, no holds on my next car (ZO6) Do I, or anybody, need this power or braking power for street use, NO. We buy these cars, back to square one, cause we can.
              agreed. I told my wife from day 1 that this would NOT see a track and most likely never see an autocross course ( might just for fun though ) so the Z51 was not something we HAD to have.

              Brian Huber
              Previous Corvettes
              2002 Z06 - SCCA autocross car - 58SSR ( Sold 4/20 )
              2003 Vert - Wife's stress relief/therapy car ( Sold 7/20 )

              2021 Coupe Black #6936 - Natural two-tone. 2LT, Mag-ride, NPP, Edge Red Calipers. NCM delivery ( Status 3000 as of 1/11/21 , 3300 as of 2/16/21, 3400 as of 3/9/21, 3800 as of 3/15/21, NCM Delivery 3/29)

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              • #8
                Originally posted by vcappp View Post
                Thanks for the answers meyerweb and John.

                Just curious, if Z51 Brake calipers can be installed on a non-z51 model c8, then, does the z51 brake calipers needs the z51 “rotor” too? Or does the base non-z51 rotor can take the z51 brake calipers without replacing the non-z51 rotor to the z51 rotor? i mean that can the z51 brake calipers be installed together with non-z51 rotor in the non-z51 model c8 ?
                You would definitely need all the Z51 brake components: rotors, calipers, and pads.
                Delivered 5/29!: Scarlet Fever 2021 2LT HTC, Red Mist Metallic Tintcoat, two-tone Naturalw/ suede inserts, Mag Ride, Performance Exhaust, MRR 755 Gunmetal wheels

                Proud member of the Old Dominion Corvette Club: https://www.olddominioncorvetteclub.org/

                Never grow up - It's a trap.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by meyerweb View Post
                  The biggest advantage of the Z51 brakes, with bigger rotors and larger pads, is probably better fade resistance. But except in the very rare circumstance like that described by John, you'll have a really, really hard time getting the base brakes to fade on the street. If you're driving hard enough to get the brakes to fade, you really need to get off the street and onto a track.

                  The other advantage to the Z51 brakes is that the monobloc calipers are going to be somewhat more rigid than the ones on the base, which will improve brake feel a bit when braking very hard. Again, mostly an advantage on the track when you can expect to be braking at the limit multiple times per lap.

                  I'm pretty sure the summer tires on the Z51 make a bigger difference in braking performance, on the street, than the brakes themselves. And even that difference is pretty small.

                  As for upgrading the base brakes to the Z51 setup, you could probably do that. I know of a couple of people who did that on a C7. But as John suggests, there are probably cheaper solutions that are just as good or better.
                  Is it correctly understood that the size of the calipers (base vs. Z51) are the same, though?
                  Coupe, 1LT, Rapid Blue, orange seat belts and black interior. ETA Late 2021.

                  First mods: tinted windows, orange DIY stitching, orange 12 o clock stripe on steering wheel, orange EL-wire in the cabin, orange engine cover, orange painted grille protectors and orange led light in engine bay✌️😎

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Top Off Action View Post

                    Is it correctly understood that the size of the calipers (base vs. Z51) are the same, though?
                    They are not, please see this post....
                    Brembo Press Release Including Technical Specs For Its C8 Stingray Brakes - MidEngineCorvetteForum.com

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                    • #11
                      Hm, I see info anout the pads and the rotors… but not if there is any size difference between base and Z51. The base calipers actually look bigger/more bulky?
                      Coupe, 1LT, Rapid Blue, orange seat belts and black interior. ETA Late 2021.

                      First mods: tinted windows, orange DIY stitching, orange 12 o clock stripe on steering wheel, orange EL-wire in the cabin, orange engine cover, orange painted grille protectors and orange led light in engine bay✌️😎

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                      • #12
                        Just to add another wrinkle to the discussion. The Z51 rotors are larger and fill out the inside of the wheel more. IMO, strictly from visual point of view I feel that disc brakes that fill in the wheel opening have a more of a high performance vehicle look to them.
                        Probably doesn't matter to some, but it's something that I notice.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Top Off Action View Post

                          Hm, I see info anout the pads and the rotors… but not if there is any size difference between base and Z51. The base calipers actually look bigger/more bulky?
                          The pad swept areas are larger, the rotors are larger, the calipers are monoblock - they do not share any commonalities. Unless your interest lies with some/all of the bulk outer dimensions only the brakes are different.

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                          • #14
                            I understand they are completely different, but I am specifically asking about the size of the calipers… front and back. Which ones does look bigger, visually?
                            Coupe, 1LT, Rapid Blue, orange seat belts and black interior. ETA Late 2021.

                            First mods: tinted windows, orange DIY stitching, orange 12 o clock stripe on steering wheel, orange EL-wire in the cabin, orange engine cover, orange painted grille protectors and orange led light in engine bay✌️😎

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Top Off Action View Post
                              I understand they are completely different, but I am specifically asking about the size of the calipers… front and back. Which ones does look bigger, visually?
                              How big something looks is often dependent on what it is compared to. There are lots of optical illusions based on this aspect of vision. I don't have both brakes handy to look at, but I suspect if the base calipers look bigger it's only because they are next to the smaller rotor on the base brakes. The actual physical size of the calipers probably isn't very different.
                              Delivered 5/29!: Scarlet Fever 2021 2LT HTC, Red Mist Metallic Tintcoat, two-tone Naturalw/ suede inserts, Mag Ride, Performance Exhaust, MRR 755 Gunmetal wheels

                              Proud member of the Old Dominion Corvette Club: https://www.olddominioncorvetteclub.org/

                              Never grow up - It's a trap.

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