Vendor: Mountain Pass Performance
What we have learned over the years of track time with the Tesla Model 3 is that while our 365mm BBK is good enough for track use with a standard RWD car, for serious track abuse with an AWD or AWD Performance, it just doesn’t quite have enough for more than 3-4 really hot laps. The same goes for the performance brakes. They are great, but eventually, the fluid will boil as there just isn’t enough rotor to take the heat away, even with our upgraded 2pc rotors. We also learned that the low-drag seals that help make the Model 3 so efficient lose their effectiveness after a few track days, as they are cooked and no longer seem to have the same kind of effectiveness as when they were new.
For this reason, we decided it was time to offer a motorsport big brake upgrade. We have been racing with StopTech calipers since 2008, using a relatively tiny ST-40 caliper that has seen everything from 3-hour endurance races to GTLM levels of downforce to contend with. We knew that StopTech would be an ideal partner for this upgrade. The STR-60 was the perfect caliper for the job. It ticks all the boxes: low-profile, made from a forged aluminum alloy, incredibly stiff (one of the stiffest calipers available), uses a standard pad shape, offers differential piston sizes, and uses silicone dust boots and anti-rattle clips – making the caliper suitable for daily driving. The caliper is hard anodized, which means it will put up with heat and abuse far better than a painted or powder-coated caliper.
StopTech has done a really impressive job with the design of this caliper by using a bolt-in bridge system. The benefit is that the bridge offers a massive increase in caliper stiffness while being easily removed to quickly swap out pads. The bridge also contains anti-rattle clips that prevent the pads from making any noise. Caliper stiffness is extremely important – not just for confidence-inspiring brake feel, but also for the performance of the ABS system. Bosch Motorsport points out that the ABS can only work as well as the system can respond, and if a caliper is flexing, that will delay the time it takes for the ABS valves to apply and release the pad. So a stiff caliper results in a faster-acting ABS, allowing it to stay ever close to the tire’s optimal slip point. We actually noticed the lockup events seemed to occur at a higher frequency when comparing these brakes back to back to the OE calipers. This would match up with Bosch Motorsport’s claims.
After the caliper, we wanted to fit the largest rotor possible under an 18″ wheel. We knew that a 32mm wide rotor wasn’t going to cut it, so we went for the big boy – 35mm. That is 10mm wider than the factory rotor! and that is where a huge amount of cooling comes from.
This is the kind of brake setup you would find on a GT4 racecar, dare we even say a GT3 car. A forged billet aluminum machined caliper with a monstrous rotor, all that just fits under an 18″ wheel. You’ll see that most 18″ wheel brake kits are only 355mm in diameter – but we were able to go all the way up to 368mm! The rotors are produced by the same rotor supplier that does all of our other kits (Girodisc), and they are known to produce some of the best rotors in the world. These discs last a LONG time.
380mm is a great choice if you want to fill in 20″ wheels for example. There is not going to be a noticeable performance benefit from the 368 to 380 – it’s mostly for looks!35mm thick, yet only 2.5lbs heavier than a rotor 10mm narrower and 10mm smaller.
By using such a large rotor, we are also able to give you a wide range of pad options. Since the caliper uses a large pad, paired with a rotor that can dissipate a mega amount of heat, it is possible for most to use a modest sport brake pad compound and potentially not have to worry about changing pads at the track versus on the street. This will be suitable for most, however, for those that are driving performance Model 3’s at the absolute limit on brake intensive tracks, full racing pads will be required. Update May 2022: We have worked with Pagid racing and now offer an incredible endurance racing pad that has great street manners, a very long pad life, and is very easy on rotors. We highly recommend using these pads if you’ll be running your car on the track.
The silicone dust boots included are rated to handle much higher temperatures than rubber dust boots, and we were pleased to see that after two track days, one with significant long-running, the dust boots look brand new. While there a few big brake kits on the market, it’s worth asking – how many companies that develop big brake kits have actually put thousands of miles on their kits, and track tested them repeatedly before offering them for sale? We’re not interested in just fitting the biggest rotor we can and making it look pretty! There have already been some claims that we don’t fully agree with from other brake suppliers – so if you have any questions on a competing brake kit’s claims, feel free to email us and we can give you our thoughts!
What was the end result? Well, these brakes are pretty great. The brake pedal is noticeably firmer as soon as you install the brakes, so all that talk about caliper stiffness isn’t just imaginary. And the response and direct translation of brake pressure to deceleration G’s is more solid and linear than ever before. It just keeps getting better! With these brakes and the rest of the MPP running gear, you’d swear you were in a Porsche or exotic on the track. Everything is just so direct and sharp. Yet on the street, there was no brake noise, no rattles, and almost no brake dust.
These calipers install using MPP Stainless Steel Braided brake lines (not included)
This MPP.R brake system includes the following:
Note: The 368mm rotors will NOT work with the OEM 18″ aero wheels, however, it works with just about every aftermarket 18″ wheel we have checked. Please email us if you’re unsure and we will provide drawings you can use to check.
Tesla Model 3, including Performance
Mountain Pass PerformanceMountain Pass Performance - “Easy Big Fella” 400mm Big Brake Kit - Tesla Model S Plaid
Mountain Pass PerformanceMountain Pass Performance - MPR.R Performance Rear Big Brake Kit - Tesla Model 3/Model Y