Wilwood got its start engineering and selling brakes for circle track racers who were going faster than the factory brakes on their stock cars could handle. No matter what they were racing, one thing all these racers had in common was they also had a heavy-duty pickup truck to tow the car to the track for race day. All these years later, a lot has changed, but trucks are more popular than ever, and traffic has only gotten worse.
Do you find yourself sweating and white-knuckling the wheel when towing or hauling with your pickup truck? A set of big, high-performance brakes from Wilwood can improve stopping distances and reduce fade when you're using your vehicle near the limits of its intended payload capacity. Many modern trucks have no problem pulling 10,000 lbs, but you may find their brakes are less than ideal when coming down a twisty road through the mountains.
The Ford F-series trucks are perennially the best-selling vehicle in America. The Super Duty F-250 and F-350 are the most popular when towing and hauling, though even the F-150 is amazingly capable for those tasks. Everything about these trucks is heavy-duty, but sadly the brake rotors are sized to fit in the 15 or 17-inch wheels of the base model trucks. If you have upgraded your wheels or have larger factory option rims, Wilwood has much better brakes for you.
Every generation of the half-ton truck seems to get a boost in payload and towing capacity. These days you typically can pull 10,000 lbs or more without moving up to a 3/4-ton, but you don't want to wait until you are coming down a mountain road to find the brakes are not quite up to the task.
For 2010-18 F150 two or four-wheel drive, kit #140-13865 requires 20-inch wheels but fills them with TX6R calipers and 15.50-inch rotors. Owners of 2004-08 F-150 (6-lug wheel models) with two-wheel drive can upgrade to kit #140-9072 with huge 16-inch rotors and TC6R calipers, while 4x4 owners get kit #140-15286 with slightly smaller rotors and TX6R calipers.
For 1997-03 two-wheel drive trucks (and Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator SUVs) with 18-inch wheels, kit #140-12824 fits 14.25-inch rotors and Aero6 calipers to help handle heavy loads. Wilwood also has replacement brake pads for the factory rear calipers to balance the upgraded fronts for most of these trucks.
F-250 and F-350
If you haul with a 2005-12 Ford F250 or F350 (single rear wheel only) 4x4, the Wilwood TX6R big front brake kit #140-13867 upgrades the brakes to 16-inch rotors with six-piston calipers for massively improved fade resistance. Pair it with the matching 15.50-inch rear, kit #140-13868, for even the heaviest 5th wheel towing. Get the calipers in black, red, type-III hard anodized, or one of 24 custom colors.
For 2013-20 F250 and F350 a similar kit is also available, part #140-14558 for the front, and part #140-14559 for the rear of single rear wheel 4x4 models. At the moment, Wilwood doesn't have big brake kits for earlier trucks, but you can always email us a request to find out about custom kits here.
The General Motors LS series of V8 motors seem to be swapped into every hot rod, classic, and race car these days, so why not buy one factory installed? The 5.3-liter or 6.2-liter motors in Silverado and Sierra trucks have plenty of grunt for towing and hauling, even in the lower-rated models.
General Motors makes things easy for us, and the same Wilwood kits fit most 2000-18 half-ton Silverado, Sierra, Yukon, Tahoe, Suburban, Avalanche, and Escalade models. Kit #140-9789 requires 18-inch wheels and upgrades the front of your truck to Aero6 calipers and 14.25-inch rotors. If you need more and have 20-inch rims, you can upgrade to 16-inch rotors and the TC6R calipers in kit #140-13876 or TX6R calipers in kit #140-8992.
3/4-Ton and 1-Ton Trucks
If your heavy-duty tow vehicle is a Chevy or GMC 3/4-ton or 1-ton truck, Wilwood has options for you too. With 20-inch wheels on a 2011-19 Silverado/Sierra 2500 or Silverado/Sierra 3500, you can upgrade to Wilwood TX6R calipers and huge 15-inch x 1.50-inch thick rotors with kit #140-13873 to withstand extreme heat.
If you've got almost any 8-lug axle GM-built truck or SUV (even the Hummer H2) from the previous 1999-10 generation, Wilwood gives you a choice of big front brake kits. Kit #140-13877 has 16-inch slotted rotors with TX6R calipers and fits inside 20-inch wheels. Kit #140-8996 also starts with 16-inch rotors in slotted, or drilled and slotted, but uses the TC6R calipers. Both kits have matching rear options, #140-13879 with the TX6R caliper or #140-9406 with the TC6R caliper.
Ever since Dodge put Cummins diesel power in their heavy-duty pickups, they have been winning over former Ford and Chevy buyers. The big rig styling in 1994 on even the half-tons made them stand out from the crowd too. Dodge spun Ram off into its own brand name in 2010, and the Ram trucks have kept getting better every year.
The modern Ram 1500, with coil springs at all four corners, or factory air-adjustable suspension, is one of the best riding, best handling pickup trucks ever built. One area that can be improved, especially if you tow, is the brakes. If you have 20-inch wheels, Wilwood offers you an upgrade as good as the heavier-rated trucks in our TX6R big front brake kit, part #140-15807, featuring 16-inch rotors. A matching kit is available for the rear as well, part #140-16026, with Aero4 calipers and 15-inch rotors.
You can even buy just the Wilwood performance compound PolyMatrix brake pads, front and rear, to upgrade the OEM Ram calipers and factory rotors.
Ram 2500 and 3500
If you tow with a 2014-18 heavy-duty 2 or 4-wheel drive Ram (single rear wheel models only), Wilwood kit #140-15381 provides huge 16-inch slotted rotors and immense six-piston TX6R calipers to slow your roll. Matching kit #140-15382 for the rear will fill your 20-inch rims and help slow that huge trailer you're towing.
When you consider how much money you've invested in your truck, your trailer, and the things you tow on the trailer (race car, show horses, hot air balloon, power boat, etc.), investing in a brake upgrade really makes sense. We all spend money on insurance, but your auto insurance can't prevent the accident from happening the way upgraded big brake kits might. The peace of mind that comes with reliable brakes stop after stop will make towing less stressful and your recreational vehicle or pastime that much more enjoyable.