To some of us, at least, of the most visually annoying elements of many past concept cars
has been the installation of huge wheels on cars with normal size brakes. The resulting product can end up looking ridiculous. As I was checking out the littlest Lincoln
, the Concept C
on the Cobo Hall show floor today, I noticed something interesting in the wheels. Take a close look at the brake caliper in the photo above. Typically, the brake rotor is attached to the wheel hub and the caliper grips the disk from the out edge. On the Concept C, the braking surface is attached to the inside edge of the wheel rim with caliper wrapping around the inside edge of the rotor. This basic idea has been tried before... mostly on concept cars.
An internal caliper mount has the advantage of allowing a larger effective radius for where the braking force is applied. Since torque is defined as a force applied at a distance from a pivot point, the greater the distance, the greater the braking force. Such a setup allows more brake force with a smaller caliper, which in turn can provide better brake feel since the fluid displacement is smaller. The downside is that changing wheels becomes a much more complicated matter since the brake hardware is mounted on the wheel.