Hi, I have been doing a lot of research about turbo's. I want to share my current understanding of turbo's, theory of operation and pros and cons, to see if I'm on the money with this topic.
Naturally aspirated engines usually build more power by adding more displacement via boring out cylinders wider and increasing the stroke. It's also a very good idea to get good breathing heads, nice carbs, and a better valve train, like a bigger cam, so you can force more air/fuel into the cylinder to go boom. This works very well, but the draw back is by doing this you increase heat, stress, and wear on the engine, thus decreasing it's life expectancy.
Now when it comes to Turbos, the engine no longer relays on natural aspiration. Instead of the higher air pressure outside evening itself out into the engine, the air is forced in by taking advantage of the exhaust energy. With a turbo, you don't need to have high compression ratio because the turbo forces in air at high speed, not volume, thus it increases life and improves efficiency. Now when it comes to boost, yes the engine is being greatly stressed, but if you have a good wastegate and a boost sensitive carb (I'm referring to the 1600t kit from www.vwturbokits.com
) you only create more power when you want to. You will still need to build a beefy engine to handle all the extra stress, but if you're building any kind of high power performance engine, why wouldn't you?
If turbo's really do make your engine more efficient, yet only give you more power when you need, then would any car benefit from having a turbo? And if thats the case, why don't more VW drivers use turbos?