2017 Preview: Charged For Turbos

Jan 3, 2017

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following excerpt was taken from an article previewing 2017 trends in the January issue of THE SHOP, which you can read now. THE SHOP eNewsletter will publish a new excerpt from the article each day. 

Turning to trends under the hood, turbocharging is expected to grow its popularity, thanks to a unique ability to provide power and efficiency upgrades on a wide variety of applications.

A recent report published by MarketsandMarkets projected the worldwide turbo market to grow at a CAGR of 7.63 percent, reaching a market size of $18.49 billion by 2021, with passenger cars leading the way.

Proven in motorsports and found on OEM fleets worldwide, turbochargers have shed any negative impressions to become an aftermarket favorite as well, says Patrick Harcourt, regional sales manager for BorgWarner.

“Turbocharging has become ubiquitous for its ability to increase performance and reduce emissions,” he explains. “Drivers are now comfortable and familiar with the benefits of turbocharging.”

Engineering advancements such as the company’s Gamma-Ti turbine wheels are driving the industry, and the ability to purchase a wide range of powerful aftermarket turbochargers make them a favorite of many performance outlets.

“Shop owners and installers demand and appreciate integrated features,” he explains. “A turbocharger equipped with components such as a compressor recirculation valve and internal wastegate offer convenience, and save them time.”

With turbos found in motorsports applications such as Formula Drift, IndyCar, drag racing and time attack, manufacturers are diversifying to cover as many applications as possible. BorgWarner, for instance, was touting its EFR and AirWerks product lines at the 2016 SEMA Show.

“What you’re seeing is a wider product range, because customers want products specific to their application,” Harcourt says. “There’s a demand for more variety, and flexibility within a given horsepower range.”

Online information is helping simplify turbo choices and answer installation questions, bringing what was once viewed as an extremely technical market to the masses.

“Shops and consumers are more educated than ever, and we are supporting them with sophisticated matching programs,” says Harcourt. “We also benefit from working with OEMs and motorsports teams to provide reliability. The goal is to install a turbocharger once and have a satisfied customer.”