In the global battle to reduce emissions, automakers have made considerable strides in boosting the fuel efficiency of internal combustion engines thanks to fuel-saving gadgets like turbochargers.

Craig Balis, vice-president of engineers at Honeywell Turbo Technologies, told Reuters:
The turbocharger is a green technology in the sense that it's helping cut emissions and raise fuel economy. It's a critical component to get more fuel efficiency out of the engine.
Turbochargers are no longer seen only as power boosters. Nowadays, the turbo is a mainstream weapon used by most automakers to increase efficiency, Typically, a turbo'd engine is around 20 percent more fuel-efficient than a naturally aspirated engine with comparable power output.

But with most automakers shifting some degree of focus and resources to plug-in vehicles, is the turbocharger on its way out? No. Industry officials and analysts predict that turbo'd engines will stay around until at least 2030, when electric vehicles are forcecasted to start grabbing a significant chunk of sales.

The bigger question is, given advanced technology like turbochargers, does the world even need plug-in vehicles to meet upcoming CO2 emissions targets? Pierre Gaudillat, a Transport and Environment policy officer in Brussels says, "That's a valid question. The answer is: maybe not."

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