The world’s leading automaker, Japan’s Toyota, is probably mostly associated with hybrids if anyone discusses automotive powertrains, but the carmaker is planning now a huge strategy makeover that also includes a push into turbo territory.
The recent powertrain announcements are also signaling that Toyota is aligning its views with rivaling companies – most analysts and industry experts forecast that a large percentage of the future gas and diesel engine would use turbocharging to lift power and decrease fuel consumption over the next decade. “By constantly increasing environmental performance across its entire vehicle lineup, Toyota aims to offer a portfolio of environment-friendly vehicles that meet the diverse needs of consumers,” read a careful statement issued by the Japan-based automaker. Toyota also presented its newest turbo offering, the 8NR-FTS, a 1.2-liter direct-injection engine that will come via the newly refreshed Auris compact. It employs a single-scroll turbocharger and adaptive intake cooling to optimize exhaust temperate, with the manufacturer claiming improved acceleration across a larger RPM range.
The carmaker didn’t back out of its hybrid mantra though, with the New York Auto Show premiering the range’s eighth gas-electric model – the RAV4 Hybrid. But demand for its top selling Prius hybrid has actually started to slip last year as hybrid sales have started to lose momentum, mostly because of the late resurgence of low fuel prices. Turbos are doing very well on the other hand, with competing Honda also introducing in New York its new Earth Dreams turbo engine for the upcoming new generation Civic. And the technology is also reaching the luxury class, with Cadillac confirming its plans to equip their latest CT6 flagship with a twin-turbo V6 when the sporty version will become available, instead of the usual V8.