Electronic handbrakes swamp the market


Active Member
Chokes, cassette players and wind-up windows are relics rarely seen in cars nowadays, and now the traditional handbrake could be the next familiar feature to disappear.

The rise of electric vehicles saw the number of new models with a traditional handbrake fall by nearly a third last year.

Fewer than one in five showroom models – 17 per cent – now feature the mechanical lever, compared to 24 per cent in 2020 and 30 per cent the year before.

Of the 550 models available to buyers in the UK across 38 manufacturers reviewed by online marketplace CarGurus, just 92 have it, most of them sportier or affordable small vehicles.

The emergence of electric cars and the departure of Mitsubishi, 57 per cent of whose range had levers, from the UK market has accelerated the decline of the device, say researchers.

Daily Telegraph
according to i newspaper yesterday the days of the handbrake as we know it on this site are fast disappearing , also according to i newspaper the average cost of repairs to a traditional handbrake are £129 as apposed to £880 for an electronic handbrake

what are the advantages of an electronic handbrake? from what am I reading the electronic handbrake automatically unsets as the accelerator is pressed at anytime , so if that is true it would certainly be an interesting development in driving off from traffic lights, what do you think?

I hired a VW Passatt a couple of months ago and I was initially baffled at the "missing handbrake" it was an auto so I always used P to park the car whenever I had to park up, whether that applied the handbrake I have no idea, come to think of it now the car hire bloke never pointed it out or gave me any info on it so I guess looking back on it I just didnt ever use it o_O


Unless you are an electronic handbrake technician............
I have one on my daily drive. It works very well. It releases automatically. I hear the motor make a little noise to release, and to apply, and every time I hear it I think about the day when it doesn't make that little noise and wonder just how much its going to cost me.
I would prefer the ease of adjustment/fixing that pulling a lever up is associated with. A solution still trying to find its problem in my uninformed opinion.


Staff member
My daily has one and I would rather have the mechanical one TBH. It's connected with the anti roll away system which holds it on hills, or whenever you come to a halt, (if you have it turned on). When I first got it, I drove out of the garage, got out to close the garage door and the car rolled off? I did have it turned on, but didn't know that it didn't work unless you had your seatbelt on?

My battery died on my old A6 luckily leaving just enough power to take the handbrake off. That could have been a problem for the recovery service, especially as the battery in deep in the boot, and the tailgate opens electronically.


Well-Known Member
Like any new "thing" that is on the market. Good for 5 years -then?
its called built in obsolescence.
Thats why your Rover P6 will be around for many more years -coz we can fix them ourselves


Well-Known Member
I like mine in my Mercedes. I just does what it needs to. I almost never use it in my P6, just use park. Just enough to keep it from seizing.


Well-Known Member
Electronic handbrakes are hateful things. The one in my last Audi would sometimes not engage, you were never confident it was on, then sometimes it would not release - I hated it.
I also like to turn my headlights and wipers on when I want them on and not when the car may decide they need to be on.
I like driving the car I am in, I don't want to just sit there and have it drive me.
Hateful things.

We have one, and only because we liked the car and couldn't find a suitable (new) car with a 'proper' handbrake. It's quite common now for rear pads to wear out before front ones and I'm sure that's down go the electric parking brake; yes, some release automatically but there is drag as they do so. Yet another answer to a question that wasn't asked.

For me, proper hand brake or cup holder? - former wins every time.