Turbochargers may typically be thought of as an enhancer in terms of performance, but they have been increasingly used by automakers to save on fuel economy. Turbocharging technology has come a long way, and a turbocharged four-cylinder can now be comparable in horsepower to a V6 engine.
This has led many automakers to downsize the engines in their vehicle to increase their MPGs, according to Honeywell Turbo Technology. Turbocharging smaller engines allows automakers to offer consumers the best of both worlds - the same power they're used to with increased MPGs. Honeywell predicts American automakers will sell 3.2 million turbocharged cars in 2012, up from 2.2 million last year.
"With fuel prices being a significant concern for consumers and businesses, turbochargers are a smart choice for getting more miles to the gallon," said Tony Schultz, vice president for the Americas, Honeywell Turbo Technologies. "It's a proven technology that can be used across market segments and does not put the consumer in an extended payback period like other technologies to realize its benefits. Turbocharging technology has been a fuel economy driver for decades in the United States for the on- and off-highway commercial vehicle market, as well as in global passenger vehicle markets like Europe."
Drivers who want to increase power in their current vehicles may want to consider investing in fuel injection cleaning, which has been proven to result in performance gains.