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Consumer Reports criticizes small turbo engines for misleading performance, fuel economy claims [w/video]Tue, 05 Feb 2013 10:13:00 EST
Consumer Reports has taken aim at at small-displacement, forced-induction engines, saying the powerplants don't manage to deliver on automaker fuel economy claims. Manufacturers have long held that smaller, turbocharged engines pack all power of their larger displacement cousins with significantly better fuel economy, but the research organization says that despite scoring high EPA economy numbers, the engines are no better than conventional drivetrains in both categories. Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for Consumer Reports, says the forced induction options "are often slower and less fuel efficient than larger four and six-cylinder engines."
Specifically, CR calls out the new Ford Fusion equipped with the automaker's Ecoboost 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine. The institute's researchers found the engine, which is a $795 option over the base 2.5-liter four-cylinder, fails to match competitors in acceleration and served up 25 miles per gallon in testing, putting the sedan dead last among other midsize options.
The Chevrolet Cruze, Hyundai Sonata Turbo and Ford Escape 2.0T all got dinged for the same troubles, though Consumer Reports has found the turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder in the BMW 328i does deliver on its promises. You can check out the full press release below. You can also read the full study on the Consumer Reports site, or scroll down for a short video recap.
They say "idle hands are the devil's playground," but said playgrounds grow to Disney-sized proportions when a pair of jacked-up trucks, two egos, a chain and an empty mall parking lot are involved. Proof of this is the video below, which shows a Cummins-powered Dodge Ram circa 2006 to 2008 chained tail-to-tail with what looks to be a gasoline-powered Chevrolet Silverado from the late 1990s or early 2000s.
We don't necessarily have to tell you who wins this battle, but we'll let you see for yourself the lengths the "winning" driver goes to prove his point. There's plenty of foul language in the video below, so beware that this might be Not Safe For Work, and not that we should have to tell you, but please, do not try this at home.
Just looking at the new 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, it's not hard to see that the car's design was created with aerodynamics at the forefront, but Chevrolet designers point out exactly what went into designing the iconic coupe in a pair of recently released videos. The videos show the Corvette going through early design phases, including clay models and wind tunnel tests, as well as talking to the car's chief engineer, Tadge Juechter.
Both videos help explain various aspects of the C7 Corvette, but it's the aero tuning of the car that is most interesting. This includes extra attention paid to the lower air dam and vented hood to help reduce drag and lift, while the rear quarter inlets are for differential and transmission cooling. Juechter said that some of these aero-tuned elements were inspired from GM's involvement in racing.
If you have about five minutes and you can't get enough information about the new 'Vette, then check out the videos posted below.