The story of turbo begins in 1954 when Garrett’s T15 turbo was paired with Caterpillar’s D9 crawler. Although the appropriately named Oldsmobile Jetfire Turbo Rocket became the first turbocharged production car in 1962, the technology’s impact was initially felt more keenly in commercial vehicles when in 1967 Deere selected the Garrett T04 turbo for its farm tractor range…and the entire industry followed. But it was in the 1990s that turbo went mainstream and global, when Garrett’s new variable nozzle turbine technology (VNT) enabled the 1991 Fiat Croma to adjust exhaust gas flow in direct response to specific engine requirements. And when Volkswagen-Audi paired VNT technology with its 1.9L diesel engine for its Frankfurt Motor Show launch in 1995, the symbiotic fit between turbocharging and direct injection diesel powertrains was confirmed…and evolution became revolution.
The potential of turbocharging in the racing environment was recognized as early as the 1920s and 30s when compressor cars, which used supercharger technology, competed against each other. Today, turbo and e-compressor help to turn power into podium positions and delivers enduring success at some of the most famous race events in the world like in Formula one, Indy car, FIA World Rally or 24 Hours of Le Mans. In 2017 Garrett turbo technology records 18th consecutive victory at the famed 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race, helping Porsche Motorsport LMP Team to its third consecutive win. And in 2018 Garrett turbo technology helped Toyota to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans.