With fast and undulating roads, and not to mention common bouts of rainfall, snow and ice, Rally GB is famously slippery and muddy, proving year after year to be a particular challenge for both the drivers and their cars. Fighting against both weather and road conditions, rally cars take quite the beating throughout the three-day Welsh event.
To help ensure the drivers retain full control of their vehicles despite the unpredictable conditions, the cars are fitted with the most durable, high-quality, safety-enhancing automotive equipment and parts available. Unfortunately, unlike their road going equivalents, WRC drivers do not have the luxury of one of these essential parts, anti-lock braking system (ABS) speed sensors.
Current regulations do not allow for ABS sensors on World Rally cars, therefore braking techniques help determine a World class driver from an also ran. It is up to these drivers’ feather-like feel on the brake pedal to determine how much braking input is required for every high speed corner, crest and jump. If the car suddenly locks up, it is up to the driver to recover the situation. It is world class drivers like those involved with the WRC who have helped aid in the development of ABS systems to make driving safer for today’s motorists.
ABS sensors magnetically read the rotational speed of each wheel, which is fed back to the vehicle’s electronic control unit (ECU). When a wheel is starting to lock up and/or skid, the ABS system intervenes to gradually release and re-apply the brake many times per second to help ensure maximum braking efficiency and directional control can be maintained. If an ABS sensor fails, the car reverts to normal braking with no potential for ABS monitoring or modulation of pressure when a wheel, or wheels, lock up in a braking situation. Without ABS, a wheel will automatically lock up in slippery and/or gravel-like conditions, as well as potentially experience a loss of directional control and vehicle stability.
As the Official Automotive Technology Partner of the WRC, Delphi's extensive range of ABS sensors are comprised of OE-matching quality parts, thoroughly tested and proven to withstand extreme road and weather conditions. The parts are subjected to contact with anti-freeze fluids and oils to help ensure there are no adverse reactions, and all terminals are plated to help eliminate corrosion.
So as you comfortably commute from stage to stage with the enhanced security of ABS technology, spare a thought for the WRC drivers who do not have the same technology benefits.
To learn more about Delphi’s original equipment technology, visit www.delphi.com/am.
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