Toyota Prius Owner Survey Claim Brakes Don’t Need Replacement under 100K

In a story posted on Torque News, they surveyed a Toyota Prius Facebook owner’s group on brake repairs. The results are surprising.

60% said their brake rotors and pads had lasted over 100,000 miles, 20% said that the brakes had lasted over 200,000 miles, and 6% said the brakes had lasted between 160K and 200K miles. No owner chose any option under 60,000 miles.

This non-scientific survey applies to other hybrid vehicles that use regenerative braking. But, the survey drives home the point that the OEMs are using high-quality brake pads that are able to withstand harsh conditions inside the wheel well.

Hybrid and electric vehicles use regenerative braking to capture energy to charge the batteries. Most of the braking force is produced by the generator and motor assembly and not the brake pads themselves. The hydraulic brakes are only used during low-speed braking, emergencies and situations where the regenerative braking system needs assistance.

During some drive cycles, the pads may never get up to the same temperatures as vehicles without regenerative braking. This can lead to corrosion issues with the brake pads. Since the wear rate are significantly lower, the brake pads will be on the vehicle longer.

Corrosion can affect the bond of the friction material with the steel. It can cause the friction material to detach or delaminate from the steel of the backing plate.

Maybe the next survey should be about how long the replacement brake pads last and the brand.