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We Dive Deep With Audi's Revolutionary New Turbo Tech

An electric turbo system boosts efficiency between 15 and 20 percent, according to Audi.

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Formula 1 and endurance racing are already harvesting energy from turbos on the track, and now it's apparently time for a similar idea of boosting the efficiency of forced induction to hit the streets in a high-performance, diesel SUV.

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For years, the concept of an electric turbocharger was essentially a joke sold on eBay to boost power in your slammed Civic, but in the last five years it has moved from an idea on a piece of paper to a feasible reality. Audi has already toyed with a showcase of the cutting-edge tech in road cars with the RS5 TDI concept. Now, reports suggest an electric turbo may make it to the streets as soon as next year in the next-gen Q7 (spy shot pictured above).

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Subaru has been trying to figure out the direction for its three-headed monster, as the Impreza and its WRX and WRX STI variants have grown increasingly at odds over the past two generations. Now this gets thrown into the mix: When the new WRX gets released in late 2013, it may ditch the traditional exhaust-gas powered turbocharger for a new, electric design.

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