About   |  Performance Theory     |  Honda Supercharger Tech   |  Projects

    Turbo Vs Supercharger

    	
    
    Everyone and their dog has a favorite answer to this age old dilemma. Booth means of boost have their advantages. 
    
    Turbo Advantages:
    
    1.	Generally more efficient design.
    2.	No parasitic hp losses
    3.	Higher boost limits
    
    Turbo Disadvantages:
    
    1.	Turbo Lag (time required for turbo to spool and make boost)
    2.	Power band is generally not linear. 
    3.	Less consistent power delivery. 
    
    Supercharger Advantages:
    
    1.	Consistent power delivery
    2.	No turbo lag (on positive displacement types)
    
    Supercharger Disadvantages:
    
    1.	Lower efficiency.
    2.	Parasitic hp losses.
    3. 	Lower boost limits. 
    
    If I had the choice between a 300whp supercharger and a 300whp turbo the decision would be easy. 
    The supercharger is a much better choice; power delivery is instant, consistent, and linear.
    Unfortunately the choice is never that straight forward. Usually the decision is do you want a 
    300whp supercharger or a 450whp turbo. In this case it depends on what you want to do with the 
    vehicle. If you are running a race car where maximum acceleration is key and linear power 
    delivery or consistency is less important go with the turbo. Thus for heads up drag racing a 
    turbo rules. For bracket racing or autocross a supercharger is a superior choice. 
    
    What about for street?
    
    For street the choice all depends on your ability to deliver power to the pavement with street 
    tires. If you are making more power then you can delivery then what is the use? Spinning your
    wheels at 100km/h is cool the 1st time you do it, but it is neither safe or useful when trying
    to pass a semi? A vehicle accelerates faster when the tires are not slipping (spinning) on the 
    road.
    
    Assuming a 3000lbs car the limits of deliverable power at anything approaching posted speed 
    limits is something like:
    
    FWD: 300whp
    RWD: 400whp
    AWD: 500whp+
    
    With these limits in mind consider your options. If you can build a supercharged setup to these
    limits I?d suggest this route. If you can not, go with the turbo.