With no intention of debating the merits of turbochargers on sports and racing cars, I must disagree with Mr Anthony Blight (Motor Sport letters, May) when he says of turbocharging “nor can it possibly lead to any engineering advances”. A turbocharger can provide a small thrifty engine with a reserve of power, enabling it to replace a larger unblown engine in the interests of fuel-saving.
In the USA, the CAFE regulations set stringent standards for fuel consumption, and turbocharging is one of the means used to meet them. Chrysler alone has made literally millions of turbocharged 2.2-litre engines and used them in many of their ordinary family cars during the past decade.
Working particularly well with an automatic transmission (another mechanism that may not find favour with Mr Blight!), which the majority of drivers of medium and large cars choose here, the turbocharged engine does seem to have a “raison d’etre” and a future.
Robert D Hodgson, Birmingham, Michigan, USA.