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Could the turbocharger kill the electric car?

Discussion in 'News' started by Doug_G, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

    Apr 2, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    Could the turbocharger kill the electric car?

    It seems to me that the ICE business is putting together a huge push-back against electric cars. There's an unending stream of these sort of articles.
  2. richkae

    richkae VIN587

    Jan 15, 2008
    I'm tired of poorly qualified "experts" and "analysts" from Research Institutes.
    XYZ Global Research Institute = paid spokesman for some corporate interest.

    Constantly trying to equate the "mass market" with everyone is also tiresome.
    A product that is used by or useful to 10% of consumers, is a "mass market" in my mind. Thats a lot of consumers.
    The market for a car in a 2 car household in the U.S. is upwards of 1/3 of the car market in the U.S., that alone is enough to be a big mass market.
  3. Dave EV

    Dave EV Active Member

    Jun 23, 2009
    San Diego
    "mass market" is probably a smaller fraction than that.

    Anyway, turbocharged cars have been around forever. They don't provide any game-changing benefits in fuel economy.

    Have a look at Ford's Ecoboost engines. Probably 15-25% better on paper. Consumer reports says that in their testing the V6 Ecoboost isn't significantly better than the V8 in the F150 with rregards to fuel economy.

    And city fuel economy still sucks. The only way to get decent city fuel economy is to be able to recover energy normally lost to heat due to braking. Right now the best way is through electrification.

    On my commute my LEAF gets better efficiency in my suburban commute than highway driving (about 10-20% better). My old turbocharged ICE vehicle, it was about 15% worse on the commute compared to highway driving. My Prius is about the same in suburban and highway driving - would probably be 10-20% better in suburban driving if it had more regenerative braking capability (will be interesting to see how the PHEV does).

    So the only thing EVs aren't the most practical for are long highway drives - but that will improve in time.

    Will EVs ever replace the ICE? Never completely. But it does provide an extremely flexible alternative that works better in a lot of situations.
  4. tdelta1000

    tdelta1000 Active Member

    Jul 19, 2009
    South Florida
    The answer is no. The traditional turbo needs an I.C.E to produce there numbers. As battery tech get better so does the performance of EVs.
  5. widodh

    widodh Model S 85 and 100D

    Jan 23, 2011
    Middelburg, The Netherlands
    Uhh, I've been driving a Audi A3 2.0TDI (Turbo Diesel Injection) for about 3 years, didn't have that great fueal consumption. It did about 37mpg on average, that's not that great for a diesel.

    My current Hybrid (Toyota Auris) is doing about 42 mpg, better, but not still very great. It might be that turbo charged range extenders will do a bit better, I'm not sure.
  6. Adm

    Adm Active Member

    Jun 7, 2010
    The Netherlands
    I think the turbo, direct injection and downsizing are combined responsible for better fuel economy. Not 40%, but the numbers are not bad. The ICE needed this boost, because the ICE has been caught with its pants on its ankles when it comes to innovation when compared to hybrids and EV's. The car industry has been milking the ICE cash cow as long as they could with a minimum of innovation (read investments), but the hybrids and EV's have shown the ICEs short comings.
    However, as long as the NEDC cycle is being used the way it is now, there is no way we will see realistic results for ICE cars, let alone realistic comparisons of ICE cars and PHEV's.
    There is supposed to be a "better" cycle coming, but alas it's the European Union, so that may take a while especially if the OEM's can help it.

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