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Brembo Brake thoughts

13105 Views 21 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  DrivenDaily
So, for the past month or so I have been measuring and comparing between the Cobalt SS/TC and my malibu. I was considering buying the brembo brakes from a cobalt to put on my car, but now I have decided to just leave it alone. Either way I thought I would share what I have found so far if someone wants to try to see if it works for sure.

I am basing this off an LTZ malibu with the wheel design in my sig pic.
Cobalt SS wheels: Offset +42MM, w/diameter 18", width 7.5", bolt pattern 5x110
Malibu LTZ wheels: Offset +41MM, w/ diameter 18", width 7", bolt pattern 5x110"

Cobalt hub center OD: 2.5" diameter
Malibu hub center OD: 2.5" diameter

Cobalt SS rotor thickness new: 1.023"
Malibu rotor thickness new: 1.023"

Cobalt SS rotor diameter: 12.4"
Malibu rotor diameter: 11.6"

Cobalt caliper mounting bracket center to center: 4 7/8"
Malibu caliper mounting bracket center to center: 4 7/8"

There are some things I have not been able to compare yet though. I can't remember if the cobalt ss wheel design from behind is much different from the LTZ malibu wheel for clearance. From the looks of it there would be plenty of clearance, but I am not sure. I haven't been able to find the overall height of the rotor to compare (bottom of the rotor to the top of the rotor).

Basically what would have to be changed out is the calipers, rotors, pads, banjo washers, and brake hoses (from the caliper to the body since the mounting angle is different at the caliper).

The main benefit of this swap would be better stopping power. The Cobalt SS/TC Brembo brakes are 4 piston calipers with a larger rotor diameter. The malibu front brakes are only one piston calipers with a smaller diameter. I think it would work well to stop the heavy malibu a lot better over just swapping pads and rotors to aftermarket.

Again this is all I have found, but I have not tested to see if this would work or not. I think it would, but there may be something that I am missing. I just wanted to share what I have found and maybe someone has better resources to see if it will actually work. It is a long shot, I know, but since there is no aftermarket support for the malibu this is the only way I can find what will work.
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They seem to run between $300-$600 used for a complete kit. New they are around $900. The only issue is they don't seem to fit every wheel, I guess it depends on the design.
will they fit with my 17s? cause the rockstars 20s are going to be summer only
That's where the issues start coming in. It depends on the wheel design. I am still waiting for a cobalt ss to come into work again so I can get a closer look of design, clearances, and maybe some other measurements.
If I still had the 20's on the wife's car I would do this. Biggest problem with 20's or larger is it makes the stock brakes look tiny.
You could still do it, possibly. Everything I measured was with the stock wheels. If I had the money right now I would try it. I think the malibu really lacks in the braking department. The stock brakes look tiny with the stock 18's even. I may change my mind sometime and do this, but not for a while.
As per the OP first post, LTZ wheels have 41mm offset, so you would probably need 5mm spacers to clear the brembos.
The offset of the cobalt ss wheels is +42 MM, but where I get lost is the wheel width difference. Will the half inch wider wheel on the cobalt make that much of a difference over the 7 inch wide LTZ wheel on the malibu? I haven't heard anything good about spacers, mainly the constant re-torquing.

The wheels don't look to much different between the two, but that little bit of difference might be what doesn't allow the calipers to clear. This would all be easier if I could just find someone local who would let me put one of my wheels on their car to see if it clears.
According to this wheel calculator the extra half inch plus 1mm offset will make the cobalt wheels .3inch wider backspace.
Also, keep in mind that cobalt wheels were designed to clear the brembos with minimal offset.
Okay, that make sense. I thought it may have been a possibility. I know on the cobalts the clearance between the caliper and rotor is fairly small. Thanks.

I like the cobalt ss/tc wheels, so if I ever find a set cheap enough I may pick up a set and then possibly the brakes:).
I did get to try fitment on my wheel on a cobalt ss today. I does not clear, but it just barely hits. So, spacers or aftermarket wheels would be needed to clear the calipers.

On another note, the cobalt ss wheels did look good on my car, lol. Sorry didn't take any pictures.
Lol, sorry, the car had a rattle only when it was cold so it had to be in and out. If I had more time there would have been pictures.
Hey, no problems. Just messin' with ya. I like the new snowy pictures, btw. I see yellow fog lights? Did you also do HIDs?
Yep, they are 3000K HID fog lights. They work great for the snow and any other visibility reducing conditions. Plus, I think they look good.
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