Three Turbocharged Cars Under $50,000 That Deliver Epic Kick

your car’s engine. Probably unbeknownst to you, it’s been steadily shrinking, year after year. You may not have noticed because, as automobile engines have gotten smaller, they’ve also gotten stronger.

.. Behold the wonders of turbocharging, the technical foundation for the next generation of power-dense, efficient and emissions-friendly automobile engines.

.. First developed to make fast cars go faster, turbocharging has evolved to help car makers meet rising global fuel-economy standards.

.. The Chevrolet Malibu Premier sedan ($31,850) makes a furious 250 hp. That’s about all you could reasonably expect out of a Chevy small-block V8 (5.7 liters) back in the day. Not to mention double the fuel economy with about a zillionth the emissions.

.. The 2017 Mustang can be ordered with the 2.3 EcoBoost, with a hard-punching turbo-four that makes more power and torque (310 hp and 320 lb-ft) than Mustang’s non-turbo’ed V6 engine—with about 14% better fuel economy.

.. the Mercedes-AMG CLA45. .. 2.0-liter inline four, soaring to 375 hp at 6,000 rpm and 350 lb-ft of torque. That’s enough leverage to launch the 3,450-pound premium sedan to 60 mph in a mere 4.1 seconds. With only two liters of California-legal displacement (EPA rated at 23/30 mpg, city/highway)