The Scion FR-S was created with one word in mind; balance. The lightweight body was purposely deprived of a powerful engine and large tires to keep the focus on momentum. However, the braking system still lacks the proper tools to enjoy a day on the track without losing pedal pressure. To improve the overall feel of the car, a friend opted for a StopTech “Trophy” Big Brake Kit upgrade.
R/T Tuning in Montgomeryville, PA would be handling the install duties. On this rainy morning, their new location was already bustling with customer cars in each bay.
With a look inside the 18” Gram Lights 57C6 wheels, it was clear this car needed a rotor and caliper upgrade.
The unboxing process of a new purchase is any car guy’s favorite part. Opening the flaps to reveal the shiny new pieces awaiting their install.
The new equipment includes the forged lightweight StopTech STR Trophy calipers, their patented 2-piece AeroRotors, 309 compound brake pads, and stainless steel braided brake lines.
The rear was also treated to a new brake line setup to match the front’s addition.
Scion FR-S 10-Series may only be a couple years old but the OEM brakes have seen their share of use.
Our install starts by removing the stock 2-piston front brake caliper, followed by the stock rotor.
The 328x28mm AeroRotor offers a larger diameter than stock, while the hard-anodized billet 7075 aluminum AeroHats drop the larger package’s weight down.
OEM brake calipers attach to the vehicle’s hub behind the OEM rotor. This causes a difficult situation of holding the caliper in place and guessing where the mounting holes are. To alleviate this problem, StopTech includes hard anodized 6061-T6 Billet aluminum mounting brackets, which allows the new caliper to simply slide onto the supplied studs for an easier installation.
As the AeroRotor is placed over the studs, a crucial step is to check the distance from the new rotor to the OEM dust shield. In this case, the clearance is tight but requires no modifications to the OEM piece.
Seeing the stock unit next to the ST-40 STR Trophy 4-piston offering from StopTech, it’s easy to see the upgrade based on size alone. StopTech also claims their bolt-in bridge design offers the least amount of deflection among their competitors. These calipers will give the Scion; an enhanced pedal feel, faster brake response, less noise, and less vibration.
With the caliper mounted, the bridge is removed to showcase the application specific pistons that make this kit unique. By utilizing a piston size equal to OEM or smaller these accept braking pressure better from a stock master cylinder, rather than forcing the stock system to struggle with an oversized piston.
The 309 compound brake pad is constructed of para-aramid fiber (a combination of Kevlar and Twaron), to provide a linear response regardless of pad temperature. These offer a strong friction level, while still accommodating a resistance to fade over the pad’s long life.
Fastening the bridge produces a glimpse of the finished setup, however there is one final step before the install is complete.
The addition of the supplied StopTech stainless steel braided brake lines provide quicker, firmer, and more consistent pedal response. These are then bled with racing brake fluid, which has a higher boiling temperature to prevent the loss of pressure due to extreme brake heat.
Here is the finished product. A lightweight big brake kit ready to dramatically decrease stopping distance, while improving safety and adding to the balance this car was built to achieve.