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New As to mfg. 'strategies':
I noted that, on friend's Acura/Integra: the discs at rear were smaller (dia. maybe thickness too?) At first glance seemed a decent engr. tradeoff: rear helps-Less; less *unsprung weight, etc.
* Now try to 'Quantify' the/any..? noticeable improvement in vehicle handling. {{sigh}}

Then one enters the Capitalist-also-carmaker mind:
Via this McGuffin they can remind owners: do ALL the brakes at once (and if their arithmetic was OK, the pad-wear should Make It So.)
But this plan maximizes the labor -vs- say, doing Rears maybe every-other Front or even every third? Front-pad replacement.

Homo-sap: the Lying species ... at Work.
Still nothing ever IS 'simple': that guaranteed inspection/replacement at rear can reduce chance in Rust Belt of those rear calipers loading up with corrosives.
(Forget the rationale via which the rears are more prone.. maybe for being out of airstream that Fronts live in.)
New I didn't realize until recently that the front brakes do much more work.
Front wheels on my car are much dirtier from brake dust than the rear ones.

New Oh yess..
I forget the envelope calc re a Detroit lead-barge (like re my short-term '70 Buick Riviera, scored for a *pittance at opportune time): just amid the '73 Petro-Robber-cartel's sudden uppance of $$/bbl
and the ƒeare engendered in ... (those same non-physics buyers of our Insolent Chariots [book title du jour]; guzzlers All, then..
Gawd but Murica has always been the King-of-Waste in all things bought to show-off one's disdain for any need to economize or otherwise Think.

IIRC it came to ~500 HP equiv. power/to the energy-sink ...those poor drums, in a near 1-G stop! (one could see the incandescence of the front drums at night; I forget the calc. of much less work by rears.

Opt war-story
* I matched dealer offer for a trade-in for a friend's "conscience placation?" ..on an Audi.
(Colin Fletcher: author, the guru of Walkers everywhere, suddenly realizing that 'ecology' meant that his pristine Riviera was a pretty poor icon re conservation matters.)
'Twas n authentic G.T. with which I once went head-to-tail with a sports car driver who had cut moi off. While it weighed 5000# (!) it had the torque, brakes, handling
to be a sleeper Detroit muscle-car. Rude driver was startled to see this behemoth right on tail through twisties, etc.
Loved. It. I told Colin that, if the gas-lines remained long, I could just park the sucker in driveway; run it on hot days and sit in air-conditioned splendor. :-þ

Paid ~$1200 for this cherry monster; sold it a couple years later for ~2500; subsequent callers were each crushed to have missed it. (I didn't do homework/ no Web then.
This car was already a Legend. (No, not Acura) and had I been smarter it might have cadged a couple grand more. Oh. Well.
New Engineered to not lock the wheels
With the added caveats of a clean, dry, solid road surface and tires in good condition, the brakes are designed to not overpower the tires when properly applied*. The rears are smaller, even on a car, because the weight transfer to the front would make larger brakes overpower the reduced traction. And a locked rear end will soon overtake the front end...

Properly applied: start light to give the front suspension time to load up, then keep building pressure. It goes fast enough so it is not like you have to set it up 1/4 mile ahead of time.

That all said, my last two cars' ('08/'15 Subaru WRX) rear brake pads went at 24k miles whereas the fronts lasted much longer (36k/???). Similar characteristics noted for the Missus' Toyota UAVs.
New Possible handling advantages are probably secondary...
...to general weight saving (fuel economy) and above all, manufacturers' cost savings. You just don't need as big brakes rear as front, so why waste a milli-cent more than necessary on them?
Christian R. Conrad
Same old username (as above), but now on iki.fi

(Yeah, yeah, it redirects to the same old GMail... But just in case I ever want to change.)
     Brand badges don't mean much these days. - (Another Scott) - (27)
         I dont shop cars by brand anymore - (boxley) - (6)
             My list - (drook) - (5)
                 Ulp.. - (Ashton) - (3)
                     I haven't paid much attention. - (Another Scott) - (1)
                         I had a Pontiac Grand Prix once ... - (drook)
                     I'll look into that, thanks for the tip - (drook)
                 Re: My list - (pwhysall)
         Been happening for a long time. - (static) - (1)
             VW: From MAN and Scania via Bugatti, Bentley, Lamborghini, Porsche, Audi down to VW, SEAT and Skoda. -NT - (CRConrad)
         Yabut.. at least TTAC lends gravitas to the unravelling, eh? :-þ - (Ashton) - (11)
             Nice. - (Another Scott) - (10)
                 re "rear drums", as seems to come up in auto-porn, often - (Ashton) - (9)
                     I know about the long-gone "joys" of brake jobs, too! - (Another Scott) - (8)
                         Having done 4-wheel drums, and 3 disks (two front, one rear) on a bike ... - (drook) - (2)
                             Wikipedia has a list of advantages. - (static) - (1)
                                 Wikipedia constantly amazes me -NT - (drook)
                         As to mfg. 'strategies': - (Ashton) - (4)
                             I didn't realize until recently that the front brakes do much more work. - (static) - (1)
                                 Oh yess.. - (Ashton)
                             Engineered to not lock the wheels - (scoenye)
                             Possible handling advantages are probably secondary... - (CRConrad)
         That's nothing. Behold the Aston-Martin Cygnet: - (CRConrad) - (5)
             I've seen one of those in real life, parked in our neighborhood. - (Another Scott)
             Wonder what Q branch could do with one of those?... -NT - (scoenye)
             That was mad as a box of frogs. - (pwhysall)
             Now see the [only..] one with a V-8 - (Ashton) - (1)
                 Guess that answers my Q branch question - (scoenye)

They can feed a fine Minze?
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