General Motors Introduces eBoost Trailer Brake Concept that Improves Braking by 20 Percent
Trailer-Integrated eBoost Braking System Improves Control as Well
Towing a heavy load on a downgrade can be a nerve-wracking (or even dangerous) experience. But the General Motors eBoost Trailer Brake Concept may help make towing that much more stable and secure, thanks to an upgraded braking system integrated into the trailer, kept in close communication with the truck's stoppers. The punch line? A 20-percent improvement in stopping distances from 60 mph, which equates to about 40 feet. GM claims those numbers are close to what a truck not towing a trailer would achieve.
eBoost Brake Technology for the Trailer
The centerpiece of the kit is a trailer-ized version of GM's eBoost brakes, currently found on the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra (as well as the Corvette). If the trailer system works like it does in the trucks and the 'Vette, it incorporates a master cylinder, vacuum booster and pump, and electronic brake control module into a single unit. When the system receives a signal from the seven-pin trailer connector, it apportions braking pressure to the trailer's likewise-upgraded brake rotors, brake calipers, and tires.
In addition to increased stopping power, the eBoost Trailer Brake Concept also enables more sophisticated communication between truck and trailer. For example, when trailer sway rears its head, the trailer can use stability control to bring it into check, presumably by applying the brakes selectively to straighten out. Luddites would argue that one could achieve the same result by using a manual trailer brake controller, and they'd be right. But this system's automatic (and likely quicker-responding) operation should make for safer, less stressful driving.
Concept Form, Production Future?
At least right now, the eBoost Trailer Brake system is a concept only, and GM isn't getting into the towables business any time soon. But the automaker hopes that by showing off the concept, it will inspire existing manufacturers and aftermarket suppliers "to make the benefits a reality for truck and trailer owners in the future."
Source: General Motors