ECE R-90 regulation for brake discs and brake drums: A standard for more safety

The abbreviation “R90” is common use in car retail and for garages; everyone knows, it is a quality standard for brake parts. Since November 2016 the ECE R90 regulation, as it is officially called, has been completely introduced, including brake discs and brake drums. However, the introduction has led to some misunderstandings with garages and retail outlets, so TMD Friction, as a global leader in OE and aftermarket brake manufacture, outlines exactly what the R90 regulation means.

When do ECE R-90 certified brake discs and drums have to be mandatorily installed?

The date of the market launch is important for passenger cars; each vehicle model, which has been introduced to the market from the manufacturer after the 1st of November 2016, is only allowed to be driven with ECE R-90 brake discs and drums. Older car models can still be equipped with uncertified parts.

The biggest replacement demand exists with cars introduced before the effective date.

As part of its extensive testing and development, TMD Friction has ensured its bestselling brake discs within its comprehensive brake parts programme, even though not necessary, are ECE R-90 certified.

“As one of the world’s leading premium manufacturers of brake technology, we are very happy that the legislator has set a minimum market standard with regards to brake security and product quality. We hope that this will make it more difficult for counterfeit, low-quality brake products to make their way into the market, which can cause a decline in driving safety”, explains Category Manager Patrick Baßiere.

Are all ECE R-90 certified brake pads of the same quality?

In general, ECE R-90 is the same as every other norm: They define minimum technical standards. However, TMD Friction’s brake pads fulfill even higher quality standards than the ECE R-90 regulation specifies.

The ECE R-90 approval for brake pads, for example, is received through meeting several criteria, after numerous tests on a test stand. The catalogue of criteria for Textar is even more extensive, including areas such as braking performance, durability and comfort (see table). These areas are the most important aspect for drivers, with many of the criteria requiring intensive testing. Only then statements about behaviour at high speed, noise development and pedal feel can be made. To ensure Textar brake pads fulfill the requirements, they are tested under realistic circumstances; only then can the braking performance be assured.

“Garages and retail setting on safety should not only take the norm as a standard, but should count on the quality from a premium manufacturer”, says Baßiere.

TMD Friction tests several other criteria in addition to the ECE R-90 regulations: