Brembo-Gate Update… It’s official! Global Recall on the PR16 Master Cylinder

Hi, Motorraddicts.

So as promised we’ve been keeping a close eye on the Brembo faulty PR16 master cylinder issue.    As stated in our last 2 posts (click here for the first one, click here for the second one) even though some media outlets were speculating that the recall was only in the US, we had a strong feeling that it was a global one.

Our main reasoning was that it made no sense for Brembo to make the PR16 MC with a plastic piston for the US market but then ship it out with a better one for the rest of the world.  Manufacturing efficiencies, and cost saving measures usually mean they all come off one line and then get shipped out to the various manufacturers.

This week, #Brembo has made it official.  The recall is global, (click here to read their official position announcement on their website)  which says:

Brembo SpA, a leader in the production of disc brake systems for vehicles, following the recent publication of some articles by the international press, mentioning wrong information, points out that:

– Thanks to the constant quality monitoring over its production processes, it has uncovered the possibility of defects to the piston of the front radial master cylinder (diameters 15mm and 16mm), sold between 2015 and 2017 and mounted on some motorcycle models.

– The only manufacturers affected are: 
MV Agusta 
TM Racing 
Moto Morini

– The recall does not affect other manufacturers nor other master cylinders, or master cylinders sold as Aftermarket kits through the Brembo distribution network. 

Brembo promptly informed the manufacturers of the problem so that the owners of the aforementioned bikes could be informed and invited to have the part replaced at the nearest dealership. ​

SO! if you own a late model #Triumph, #KTM, #Aprilia, #Ducati or other brand produced from 2015 onwards, that has the M50 Calipers on it, then its likely you also have the suspect PR16 MC mated with it.    So even if your dealer network does not know about the recall, they will soon.   Brembo has also said that only OEM PR16s are at issue and aftermarket MC kits are not affected.

Owners in the US have already known about the recall but now European owners are starting to get their letters, like this one from one bike owner that posted a pic of it on Facebook.

Since the MC failure can cause a very dangerous situation while riding (read our last post with a good explanation here), We highly recommend you contact your dealer and advise them to get updated on the matter.  If you haven’t had the unit replaced under a recall and are going out on a spirited ride, then be wary and take it easy on those brakes!

Until next time, stay upright and keep that throttle hand strong!


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#Brembo #PR16 Master Cylinder #Brake #Recall Update

Brembo PR16

Hello, Fellow Addicts!

As promised, we’ve been keeping an eye on developments related to the #Brembo Master Cylinder #recall

As we mentioned earlier in the week, the reported fault seems to indicate that under heavy braking pressure, such as heavy braking during mountain carving, or track days, the plastic internal piston Brembo decided to use in the PR16 Model, may crack.  The PR16 MC is usually mated with the M50 Caliper.

Brembo has admitted that they used a ‘polyphenylene sulphide’ plastic piston and for now they are agreeing to replace the US recalled units with an aluminium version.  There is no word from Brembo on recalls in other countries.

As mentioned in our last post on the issue, should the piston crack, front brake pressure will be lost and brake fluid can also leak out of the unit and spill onto the bike.  We all know what brake fluid can do to a nice paint scheme!

Here is a crude schematic of a motorcycle master cylinder.  They vary in design slightly from one bike to another, however this should give you an idea of what this piston (circled in red) looks like.

Those of you watching know that so far the recall is only in the US.    However, due to the potential danger, affected owners in the UK, Canada and Australia are understandably worried.

Some other media outlets have speculated that perhaps Brembo only used the plastic piston in the PR16 MC’s destined for the US market and sent aluminium piston equipped PR16 units out to the rest of the world.    That could be possible.   However relaying on this speculation could be quite costly for potentially affected owners.   After all, failure of the PR16 could spell serious injury or worse.

The fact is, these things are mass produced on an assembly line.  Efficiencies and cost usually dictate that the same internal parts are used in the same unit regardless of where it is going.  Brembo likely used the plastic part to save costs, since moulding plastic is far cheaper than using aluminum.

Unless there is a law within the country it is being shipped to which dictates that part must be of a certain quality or material design, manufacturing efficiencies dictate keeping the units identical.  So our more conservative guess is that its likely that all the PR16 MCs are made the same way.

So it is a global problem, why only a US recall right now?  Well, when it comes to recalls, how they are done depends on the country.  The US has a centralized National Highway Transportation Safety Authority (NHTSA) and they have a centralized their recall system, and that system works very quickly, and mandates that all manufacturers, distributors, and vendors of the part in question immediately address the issue.  In other words they have a strong legal mechanism to sort the issue out fast.

Other jurisdictions often don’t have that and rely on the manufacturer and distributors to make their own announcement about the product and deal with remedies as they see fit.   So in Australia for example, owners would have to wait until the distributors for #Ducati #KTM #Aprilia and #Triumph to consult with the manufacturers in England, Austria, and Italy, and wait until they are given the word that a recall is in play.  Then they would have to send word to the dealers or issue letters to affected owners to get the bikes in.


When you have different companies with different internal protocols at play, and a recall system is not centralized, then news may come at different times.

Further, until the distributors are officially told about a recall, they will simply say there isn’t one in play.  Why?  Well, they can’t speak for Brembo, or the manufacturer.  They don’t have that authority.  They are limited to passing on information from their upstream and not contradicting it.

Also… In the crazy world of litigation, if a company knows about an issue (for example an employee of a dealer or distributor) and admit to it, but don’t do anything about it and a loss is suffered (money, injury, death) then that company would be held liable, since they ‘knew’ of the issue and the courts may rule they had a duty to resolve it.   So for this reason as well, the official word has to be kept.  Even if there are murmurs behind closed doors in the mechanics bay.

In short, while we cannot be sure that the PR16 on worldwide bikes is at issue, we at Motorraddicts think that potentially affected owners should be wary of the problem and keep themselves updated.

So if your bike lands in this list, or you upgraded your MC, or your bike is equipped with the M50 Caliper, then keep an eye out, inquire with your dealers, and if you are really interested have a licensed mechanic open the MC up at your next service and see if the piston is made of plastic.

The USA recall (NHTSA Campaign Number: 17V812000) says that the following models are affected.  (This recall is yet to be updated with the Triumph or KTM data)

  • 2016 and 2017 Aprilia RSV4s fitted with Brembo brakes;
  • 2017 Aprilia Tuono 1100s fitted with Brembo brakes;
  • 2015-2018 Ducati 1299 STD / 1299 S / 1299 FE / 1299 SL produced from March 16, 2015 to September 22, 2017;
  • 2015-2018 Ducati Monster 1200 S / Monster 1200 R produced from March 04, 2015 to October 23, 2017;
  • 2015 Ducati Monster 1200R
  • 2015-2018 Ducati Multistrada S / Multistrada PP produced from March 16, 2015 to October 31, 2017;
  • 2015-2018 Ducati Panigale R produced from March 16, 2015 to June 20, 2017;
  • 2017-2018 Ducati Scrambler 800 Cafe Racer produced from March 01, 2017 to November 20, 2017;
  • 2015-2018 Ducati XDiavel S produced from January 12, 2016 to September 08, 2017.

For Aprilia Owners it seems that the Noale factory is indeed issuing a recall for their European bikes.   If you want to check if yours is affected, visit this link and enter your VIN number for confirmation.

We will try and keep you updated on the issue as things progress.  Until then stay upright, and keep your throttle hand strong!


Ronno – #Like #Follow #Share

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