The ZF-Intarder wear-free brake system for commercial vehicles is celebrating a special anniversary, with one million units produced. The system integrated into the transmission assumes 90% of all braking without involving the service brake and thereby increases safety, saves material and protects the environment: All in all, the one million manufactured ZF-Intarders have prevented around 60,000 tons of brake dust. Since the beginning of production, customers have come to include rail and crane manufacturers in addition to truck and bus manufacturers.
"The ZF-Intarder fulfills several requirements simultaneously: it increases comfort and safety, lowers maintenance costs and improves environmental compatibility," according to Winfried Gründler, Head of the Truck & Van Driveline Technology Business Unit in the ZF Commercial Vehicle Technology Division.
A crucial success factor: The high 4,000 Nm brake torque available within one second that, for example, can decelerate a 38-ton vehicle with 816 brake horsepower downhill. In addition to increased safety, the system also reduces wear to brake disks and linings and thus maintenance costs. Driver comfort is also enhanced: They can set the desired speed using cruise control and the transmission control unit then takes over the downhill drive and activation of the Intarder without readjustments. The driver can regulate the brake force in increments while doing so. The environment benefits, too: The Intarder brakes gently and minimizes the creation of brake dust.
A successful product since 1992
The success story of ZF's first integrated retarder for commercial vehicles and coaches began in 1992. ZF presented the third generation at the 2008 IAA Commercial Vehicles. "Thanks to high demand, ZF has been able to almost double production capacity in the last eight years," states Winfried Gründler. "After the start of volume production, it took 16 years to reach half a million Intarders in 2008. Just eight years later, we have been able to make the jump to one million.