In 1965 a new innovation was brought to the Corvette that would forever alter the way the car was produced. Four wheel disc brakes were added to the Corvette that year and the addition would not only prove to be a welcomed addition for that year, it would eventually go on to become the standard in all Corvettes that rolled off the assembly line.
Four wheel disc brakes on the Corvette meant that the super car that seemed to be getting faster with each passing year could now afford to do so as it was now featured with a braking system that could slow and stop the car almost as fast as the car got to its top speeds. Four wheel disc brakes where first featured on many foreign name plates and Chevrolet was somewhat reluctant to include the feature on the Corvette. Perhaps it was due to the added cost or perhaps they simply didn’t want to conform, but when they finally did concede their will and included the upgraded braking system in the Corvette the improvements were noticeable almost instantly.
In that banner year of the disc brakes Chevy still allowed for the old style drum brakes to be made available and this really helped testers to show how the four wheel disc braking system was superior on all counts. Braking from 100 miles per hour to a complete stop was able to be accomplished with no deterioration in braking efficiency. With the drum brakes heat buildup would cause the brakes to lose some of their stopping power when fully applied and although there was heat buildup in the disc brakes as well, the disc brakes were able to disperse the heat without having their performance affected.
Even stops that were sudden in nature were found to be more effective and faster with the four wheel disc brake system. Finally the Sting Ray had everything in one package. Power, control, and now advanced braking.
Today it would seem absolutely absurd to think of any sports car coming with anything less than disc brakes on all four corners, especially a Corvette. But it wasn’t all that long ago that they did. Even today there are more and more advances coming out in the disc baking area and the Corvette seems to be leading the way.
The all new Corvette ZR1 features a special four wheel disc brake system that helps to slow down the over 600 horsepower monster. Even the base model Corvettes come with advanced technology in regards to disc brakes.
As the years roll on there will always be new innovations and features that help the Corvette to stand our as one of the true greats among sports cars. However, if it wasn’t for the implementation of the four wheel disc braking system on the 1965 Corvette, then many of the amazing innovations in speed that the Vette has enjoyed over the years may have never happened. Ironically, that which makes the Corvette stop indirectly helped to make it be able to go faster.