TURBO OBSOLESCE

Wheels (Australia) - - Inbox - Brian Wood, via email

I read with in­ter­est the Honey­well turbo de­vel­op­ment (‘Ex­plained’, Wheels, Septem­ber.) Good on them. But isn’t that a bit like im­prov­ing gas light­ing? Surely the trend to­wards split­ting the turbo (to drive a gen­er­a­tor) from the com­pres­sor (run by an elec­tric mo­tor), makes it pretty much re­dun­dant? Even then, it’s surely just a step­ping stone from hy­brids to full EVS? And given CSIRO has solved the ship­ping of hy­dro­gen prob­lem (strip­ping off the H from am­mo­nia, at the fill­ing sta­tion), EVS may be a fleet­ing ‘step­ping stone’ to fuel-cell EVS?

Re­fer­ring to In­sider in the same is­sue, I’ll get an early vote in that BMW is do­ing the smart thing by us­ing the same plat­form for fuel, hy­brid and EVS un­til the mar­ket set­tles down. Although some may like to wear their hertz on their sleeve and drive a funky fu­tur­is­tic-look­ing EV, I’m bet­ting the larger part of the po­ten­tial mar­ket just want the ben­e­fit with­out the ‘look at me’ the­atrics. Per­son­ally, I’d be up for a 440e right now if BMW would like to pro­vide one. The idea of driv­ing silently to work and back as an EV yet hav­ing some­thing like 250kw/500nm for a fang on the week­end, is very com­pelling.

In the mean­time, I’m off to buy an atmo, V8, man­ual, Mus­tang … Call me when youse all have made yer mind up. Not that I’m likely to hear the phone ring… We take your point, Brian, and the CSIRO’S hy­dro­gen de­vel­op­ment could be a game-changer. yet with the path to a low-emis­sions mo­tor­ing fu­ture as frag­mented as it is, it’s clear there’s a place for in­cre­men­tal ICE gains along­side R&D into al­ter­na­tive tech.

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