Major Suppliers Agree: Turbocharging is Way Forward
There's a new boss in Motor City, and it ain't Mr. Cubic Inches. Carmaker doing business stateside are increasingly adopting third (or is it fourth?) generation turbochargers to create smaller, more efficient gasoline engines– and satisfy new, stricter federal fuel economy regs. For example, VW's new TSI mill combines excellent fuel economy with good performance and so-so driveability. The Passat 1.4-liter TSI cranks out 122hp; enough to propel Wolfsburg's warrior from zero to 60mph in 10.4 sec. This while achieving 36 mpg (European model, U.S. gallons, EU testing cycle). Suppliers are scurrying to build blowers. BorgWarner's constructing new turbo-making facilities in Mexico and Thailand; and expanding facilities in Hungary and Poland. Their goal: increase its passenger car turbocharger manufacturing capacity by more than three million units. Rival Continental is set to open a new turbocharger factory in 2011, making 100k spinners a year. Is whistling the new burble?