Auto Service World
News   July 25, 2013   by Auto Service World

Wagner Brake Products Announces Low-Copper Friction Breakthrough


Wagner Brake Products has announced a breakthrough in low-copper automotive brake friction technology that has resulted in the brand’s best-ever levels of stopping power, noise control and fade resistance. The new Wagner OE21 ceramic formulations are available immediately in Wagner ThermoQuiet Ceramic brake pads.

“Our engineers have developed an advanced technology that immediately meets the requirements of impending environmental restrictions and provides across-the-board improve- ments in performance, NVH control, durability and dusting characteristics,” said Martin Hendricks, vice president and general manager, braking, Federal-Mogul. “The OE21 formulations have enabled us to make Wagner ThermoQuiet Ceramic brake pads the best pads we have ever produced for the aftermarket.”

Reduction of copper content in vehicle friction materials is required with the recent passage of environmental legislation in California and Washington. Currently, legislation mandates that the use of copper in new original equipment and replacement brake pads be reduced to less than 5% of material content by weight by January 1, 2021.

Rather than wait for the 2021 deadline, several global vehicle manufacturers have worked with Wagner brake engineers to integrate low-copper OE brake pads into next-generation models soon to go on sale.

“Given the success of our OE low-copper technologies, vehicle manufacturers have made copper reduction an immediate priority across their passenger vehicle platforms,” Hendricks said. “The implications of the legislation extend far beyond the two states that have passed these rules. This issue is critical for all OEMs and will soon become a key issue for the aftermarket as well. The launch of our new Wagner OE21 low-copper formulations is well ahead of the legislative deadlines, and these new brake pads are now available throughout the U.S. and Canada.”

The proprietary OE21 formulations were developed through an advanced tribological “fingerprinting” process that enabled Wagner brake engineers first to map the dynamic properties of copper in a full range of operating conditions and then identify alternative materials that could provide improved stopping, NVH control, wear and dusting characteristics. The new formulations offer 15 percent greater stopping power and are 35 percent quieter, on average, than previous Wagner ThermoQuiet Ceramic formulations. In addition, ThermoQuiet pads featuring the new formulations offer up to 40 percent greater fade resistance than those equipped with previous materials.

“We identified materials that allow us to meet the latest environmental requirements and achieve dramatic improvements in each key operating characteristic,” Hendricks said. “This breakthrough has resulted in significant new OE business and we expect it to drive even greater demand for Wagner ThermoQuiet brake pads and shoes.”

To learn more about the proprietary OE21 low-copper friction formulations and Wagner ThermoQuiet Ceramic brake pads, please contact your Wagner brake supplier or visit

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