Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems

Bendix offers new friction lines

Bendix will soon introduce a new three-level aftermarket friction portfolio, expanding its offerings to include friction engineered to meet every customer need for safety, performance and value.

The three performance levels are Bendix Basic Friction, Bendix Advanced Friction and Bendix OE Friction. Bendix Basic is a new line featuring an economy-grade friction designed to meet the market need for a product offering safety and performance at a lower price. Bendix Advanced Friction includes the new Bendix Advanced RSD, the industry's first aftermarket friction certified to maintain compliance with the federal mandate for Reduced Stopping Distance (RSD). Bendix OE Friction is the highest performing friction offering sold by the company.

The new three-level aftermarket friction portfolio and products – produced and made available by Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (BSFB) under the Bendixbrand name – will be available by the end of the month.

Bendix Basic Friction, with Bendix friction code BB200, provides excellent value at an economical price and is designed for good wear and consistent performance under normal operating conditions, in low to midrange temperatures.

"We believe it's important for every vehicle to be equipped for safe operation, regardless of a fleet's or operator's budget, and now we have a product that will ensure safety and performance while being more affordably priced," said BSFB President Eddie Wilkinson. "Whatever a customer's application or budget, Bendix has an aftermarket friction product to meet the need."

BendixAdvanced Friction includes RSD solutions and is designed to provide higher torque and perform in higher temperatures with less fade, making it suitable for more demanding applications, higher weights and steeper terrain. Friction at this performance level also demonstrates improved lining and drum wear, lowering the total cost of ownership.

The new product at this level, BendixAdvanced RSD, with Bendix friction code BA202R, changes the aftermarket friction landscape in the commercial vehicle industry. Previously, only OE aftermarket friction was certified as RSD compliant. Now, Bendix Advanced RSD also certifies as compliant but at a lower price.

"We listen carefully to our customers. They made it clear that while they value performance and maintaining RSD compliance, in some cases OE friction can be cost prohibitive," Wilkinson said. "Two years after the implementation of RSD phase one, many people in the industry are now relining their RSD trucks. Bendix Advanced RSD is a good option for maintaining compliance at a lower cost."

Phase one of the Reduced Stopping Distance mandate took effect in August 2011 for new three-axle tractors with Gross Vehicle Weight Ratings (GVWRs) up to 59,600 lbs. Phase two of the mandate, aimed at tractors with two axles, as well as severe service tractors with GVWRs above 59,600 lbs, took effect Aug. 1, 2013.

The RSD mandate requires most affected tractors to stop within 250'. Bendix Advanced RSD performs in the 235' range – well within the limit established by the federal mandate.

Bendix Advanced RSD is approved for vehicles with GVWRs up to 52,000 lbs. According to Gary Ganaway, BSFB director of marketing and global customer solutions, approximately 80 percent of RSD-impacted vehicles on the road fall into this weight category.

"Bendix Advanced RSD is the first high performance friction developed specifically for the aftermarket," Ganaway said. "We are committed to meeting our customers' needs for maintaining safety and reducing operating costs."

Ganaway noted the confusion in the market around replacement brake lining performance and RSD compliance, saying that not all replacement friction marketed as acceptable under RSD will actually perform to the standard. For a friction material to be certified RSD compliant, it must not only be dynamometer certified to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 121 standards, it must also pass a more demanding vehicle test.

"Official certification of RSD compliance comes only as part of an OE truck build or approval by a certified third-party vehicle test provider," he said. "We strongly advise customers to ask for evidence of compliance from their friction supplier when selecting friction for an RSD-equipped vehicle."

BendixOE Friction is the highest performing option, and includes solutions designed to exceed the RSD mandate with an extra safety margin and consistently deliver a stopping distance of 225'. It is engineered to meet the demands of OE certification and remains the only product certified for trucks above 52,000 lbs to maintain the RSD compliance performance level.

The full lineup of Bendix foundation brake products – drum brakes, disc brakes, automatic slack adjusters, spring brakes and remanufactured brake shoes – is commercially available and produced at the company's state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Bowling Green, Ky.; Huntington, Ind.; and Acuña, Mexico.