Mustang Brake Pad Guide

Mustang Brake Pad Guide

Last Updated September 28, 2017

All About Mustang Brake Pads

The Ford Mustang is an all-around beast when it comes to straight-line performance, especially with the proper bolt-on upgrades. However, sometimes when we add go-fast parts, we forget the safety items like upgraded brakes. There’s no use in being able to go faster and faster down the 1/4 mile dragstrip if you can’t come to a stop with security and confidence. That’s where Hawk Performance Brake Pads come into play.

You may have experienced the lack of confidence behind the stock brake pads on your Mustang. It could be due to the fact your brake pads are worn out, or because of brake fade. Brake fade is the feeling you get when you’re hot lapping your Mustang on the road course and after a few laps, your brake pedal becomes less responsive and very spongy. This is due to the high heat caused by excessive braking. Needless to say, it isn’t a pleasant feeling.

An easy fix to brake fade is picking up a set of high-performance brake pads from Hawk Performance. These pads are offered in a variety of different compounds which are developed and engineered for specific driving conditions. Some are made strictly for street comfort and quietness, others are loud and only work best under high-heat track conditions.

There are even some brake pads out there that are made for both; the best of both worlds! That way, you will be able to tackle the track or autocross course on the weekends but not worry about having too aggressive of a brake pad on the street during the week! This article will dive deep into the different types of brake pads that Hawk Performance offers for your Mustang from street-only to track-only and everything in between.

How Do Brake Pads Work?

ALTTAG Mustang EcoBoost With Performance Pack Brakes

The invention of the disc brake dates all the way back 1902. A man named Frederick Lanchester developed the new braking technology for his 12 horsepower Lanchester motor car in 1903. Over a century later, the general idea behind the disc brake still remains the same.

When a driver presses the brake pedal, that pushes brake fluid through a hydraulic cylinder which in turn forces the fluid towards each disc brake on every corner of the vehicle. Typically 60-70% of braking power goes towards the front of the car and the rest towards the rear.

Once the brake fluid reaches the caliper, it will push a piston (or pistons) onto the brake pad until it makes contact with the rotor or disc. The friction between the brake pad and rotor will slow the car down. That friction is important because it’s where heat is created - which is why brake pad compound is so important depending on how you drive your Mustang.

A couple myths about brake pads:

  • “The bigger the brake pad, the better.” - False. If you have two different size brake pads made of the same compound, the difference in stopping power is negligible. The stopping power comes from a combination of the caliper piston(s) force, rotor type and pad compound.
  • “Brake pads need time to warm up.” - True and False. Street and most performance pads all have excellent stopping power at low operating temperatures. The only occasion where brake pads actually need time to warm up in order to obtain the highest friction coefficient would be on race pads. And by race pads, we mean like NASCAR type vehicles. To put it in perspective, even most exotics’ brake pads perform very well, even when cold.

Mustang Brake Pads At CJ Pony Parts

Street: Hawk Performance Ceramic “PC” Brake Pads

For those enthusiasts out there that drive their Mustang on the street the majority of the time, the ceramic pads from Hawk Performance are the choice from you. These pads offer ultra-low noise, ultra-low dust and good braking ability. The ceramic pads from Hawk Performance are the comfort option available for your Mustang.

The Hawk Performance PC Brake Pads are a premium, high-performance brake pad that creates an ultra-low amount of dust and noise, but still offers a sizeable upgrade from the factory brake pad offered on your Mustang.

Track: Hawk Performance “HP Plus” Brake Pads

Hawk Performance’s HP Plus Brake Pads are an ideal option for those who are autocross and track day owners looking for a race compound that can handle high-heat track conditions. These brake pads will offer increased wear on your rotors, high noise and dust levels, but the ferro-carbon pad material will bite hard unlike any other brake pad out there.

If you’re a dedicated racer who wants to get the most out of their brakes when approaching any corner on the track, then the HP Plus brake pads from Hawk Performance are for you.

Street/Track/Strip: Hawk Performance “HPS” Brake Pads

If you’re looking for upgraded brake pads that offer the best of both worlds when it comes to street cruising and track racing, then the HPS brake pads from Hawk Performance are your optimal choice! The HPS pad is a high friction ferro-carbon pad that bites well in both hot and cold operating temperatures. They are gentle on brake rotors and offer low brake dust and virtually noise-free operation.

If you’re the kind of Mustang driver who enjoys the occasional back road run or trip to the raceway/autocross course, then the HPS or HPS 5.0 brake pads from Hawk Performance are your go-to choice for upgraded brakes!

Mustang Brake Pads At CJ Pony Parts
Bill Installing Hawk HPS Brake Pads on a 2006 Mustang

Mustang Brake Pad Guide

Getting the correct type of brake pad for your Mustang can be a difficult and laborious task. Between all the researching and figuring out which grade brake pad best fits your driving style, we hope this CJ article gave you the information needed to make a sound decision. Don’t forget, once you’re ready to make the move on a new set of brake pads for your Mustang, be sure to give CJ’s a call!

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