Anyone who has driven a turbocharged car is probably familiar with the “turbo-lag” phenomenon. Essentially, you’re into the throttle and then there is hesitation as a sufficient amount of boost is generated, and then—zooooooooooooooom!
And in some regards, there seems to have been a bit of turbo lag as it relates to the implementation of turbochargers in vehicles, and we’re now in the zooooooooooooooom! portion of the ride.
Honeywell GT17 VNT turbocharger
According to a study by Honeywell Transportation Systems, while turbochargers were on 20-million new vehicles sold globally in 2011—or 25% of the number sold—by 2017, turbos will be on 36-million passenger cars, or about 40%.
Explained Peter Hill, Honeywell Transportation Systems vp of Marketing and Product Management, “Turbochargers offer a combination of fuel-savings and performance at an affordable price compared to other technologies, making them an attractive option on subcompact cars, full-size luxury sedans, pick-up trucks and everything in between.”
In Europe, where gas prices have been comparatively high for quite a while and where taxes on engine size have been higher, turbochargers are a matter of course: in 2011, 67% of the cars sold in Europe had them; the number that Honeywell projects is +85% by 2017.
In the U.S.? Going to about 25% of all light duty vehicles by 2017, to about 6.7-million units, which is still a fraction of the 17.4-million turbocharged vehicles expected for Europe in 2017.