A turbocharger is an add-on part that uses recycled exhaust gases to increase power.  Smaller turbocharged engines can equal larger non-turbocharged ones in acceleration with better fuel economy. But be aware that turbocharged engines are only more fuel efficient when you drive with a light foot. You also should consider that the turbocharger is another moving part that can fail and be expensive to replace.  Nevertheless, the turbocharged engine provides a good solution for meeting ever-increasing fuel economy standards while not disappointing spirited drivers and many manufacturers have adopted the downsize-and-turbocharge-it engine strategy.

The Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged engine comes standard on the latest Chevrolet Cruze, featuring direct injection resulting in an EPA -estimated 42 mpg on the highway with available six-speed transmission. 

 An aluminum cylinder block and head helps reduce the Cruze’s overall mass to enhance performance and efficiency. It also features an integrated aluminum cylinder head/exhaust manifold, which further reduces weight – an attribute that contributes to increased vehicle efficiency and a more favorable front-to-rear weight balance, for a more responsive driving experience.  The all-new 2016 Cruze is noted for offering the ride of a bigger sedan in a compact sedan package.

The 2016 Volkswagen Passat also comes standard with a turbocharged engine.  Its 1.8L four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic will do 38 mpg on the highway. The Passat was also given an overall design refresh for 2016.  This mid-size sedan is known for having a roomy cabin, refined and quiet ride as well as top safety scores. 

If you’re looking at small crossover SUVs, the all-new Hyundai Tucson delivers style, value, versatility.  Hyundai’s 1.6-liter turbocharged engine comes with all but the base model. Its transmission is a seven-speed dual-clutch automated manual that works just like a regular automatic for a peppy and smooth ride.  Three inches longer and 1.1 inches wider than the previous model, the new Tucson delivers an adult-friendly backseat, enhanced cargo capacity, and cutting-edge safety and technology features. Our Limited FWD test model was rated at 30 mpg highway.