Automakers could set up the mainstream use of electric turbos image

The ever more stringent emission limits and the need to constantly improve fuel consumption has put a huge pressure on automakers. And their main cause of concern is with traditional engines – no the high tech hybrid or electrics.

Going towards alternative powered vehicles is the right call, whether hybrids, electrics or other unconventional means, like natural gas, but the bulk of the sales are made by the traditional gasoline and diesel powered cars.

And, because downsizing has entered mainstream, we all know the one part that makes it possible – without the loss of performance, is the turbo – in the form of turbochargers or superchargers. Because both carry their own design flaws, there’s a new age coming our way – the electric blower.

“I can confirm we are working on the development of the e-boost definitely,” Ulrich Weiss, Audi’s diesel engine boss, told Australia’s Drive magazine.

Audi, which used the technology in the R18 race car that recently won the 24 Hours of Le Mans looks to spearhead the trend, but next to it, French parts supplier Valeo also disclosed it has a “major” contract to supply the technology to a European automaker, with the first model coming in 2016.

The electrical supercharger is better than both conventional turbo or supercharging because it lack the main two setbacks – the lag in the first case and the fact it wastes power while idle for the latter. The electric turbo gives – just like any electric motor – all of its torque from 0 rpm and when not in use it can be switched off.