- a chevrolet patent for "decorative inserts" on brake rotors has been approved.
- those inserts are pictured here as bow-tie shapes, like chevy's logo.
- now, please, let us explain how this is a horrible idea.
brake rotors do not come in all different shapes (they're all round!), but they do come in different sizes and with a variety of detailing. some are vented, while others have slots or holes drilled in their faces. chevy is ginning up new brake rotors with entirely chevy flourishes: little bow-tie logos drilled out of them. yep—and for some reason, the company even patented the idea.
the patent application "relates to a brake rotor having a decorative insert" and mentions how it "is desirable to provide a method to effectively and lastingly mark components without adding prohibitive cost to the manufacturing process or compromising component quality." sure, but we're not certain who is clamoring for brake rotors that look like these brake rotors.
at least those taste-challenged few who do think this looks good can rest vindicated: chevy has thought of it. isn't that all you can ask? not really, because we'd also ask that chevrolet never, ever put these on sale. imagine you walk up to a chevy and these rotors peek out from behind the wheels at you the way it, stephen king's evil clown, peers at children from a storm drain. nightmare fuel.
we're not finished yet. the quadrant of chevy bow-tie logos resemble crosses stamped into a communion wafer. or the holes in a shock piston. for reasons entirely unclear, the designers also made sure to lay claim in their patent to the idea of placing a bow tie on the brake rotor hat—you know, the part of the rotor that's covered up by the wheel when both it and the wheel are properly installed. perhaps chevy's taking the long view here, anticipating its products' future 15, 20, or 30 years down the line, when they'd be set atop bricks or abandoned, their wheels having long gone missing. how else would you know you were looking at a chevy if not for those little "decorative inserts"?
the takeaway is this: please, let these not become a thing. the whole idea reeks of discount auto-parts-store kitsch, like fake buick portholes or plastic spinner hubcaps. general motors' design department has recently had a few wins, like the corvette team's ritual killing of that sports car's chrome wheel option—a good step forward in taste! this would undo that nascent progress (remember, gm has yet to fully atone for the pontiac aztek). so maybe just don't, chevy. this goes for all manufacturers, too.