All about 1.0 turbo petrol engines

1.0 litre turbocharged engines are fairly common these days with most well known brands having their own version, but are they any good? Can an engine that small, even with a turbo, have decent pickup? Do they have decent economy considering their size? Is it worth looking at these modern eco engines over the diesel engines (which are on the way out)? All these questions and more answered in the latest All Car Leasing blog post.

What was the first 1.0 turbo engine?

The first known 1.0 turbocharged engine which entered production and made available to purchase was the MA10ET l4 3-speed automatic engine used exclusively for the Nissan Figaro convertible. The engine was able to produce 76 brake horsepower, a top speed of 106 miles per hour and could achieve 39 miles per gallon. A decent attempt at innovation but it didn't materialise into anything substantial as the technology just wasn't there yet to make it viable for the mass market. 

Enter the EcoBoost

In 2009 the Ford Motor Company began production of their EcoBoost technology which would later be used in 2012 in their award winning 1.0 turbocharged engines which are most common on the roads today in their Fiesta and Focus models but can also be in the B-Max, C-Max and Tourneo Connect albeit with the more powerful 125 engine. 

By adding a turbo to a small engine, Ford were able to lower fuel consumption but still allow the car to have enough power for modern day driving. By using direct injection, the engine is delivered extra fuel only when it needs it making the 1.0 very economical when in 'cruising' conditions such as on a motorway but does guzzle a bit while the turbo is active. As the 1.0 EcoBoost engines are used on Ford's smaller fleet of cars with lighter bodies, this has resulted in vehicles with surprising performance and economy all in one package, all of this has lead to the EcoBoost engine winning award after award.

Ford's 140 EcoBoost engine has the prestigious title of one of the engines with the most horsepower per litre of any engine in the world.

Modern 1.0 litre turbo engines

Ford didn't invent the 1.0 turbo engine but they did help tremendously with popularising it and showing that a petrol engine can be nippy and economical and suitable for personal leasing and business leasing. Over the years, most brands now have a 1.0T engine in their fleet - either as their own version or as a rebranded engine. Vauxhall make a version called the Ecotec commonly seen in a Corsa, Volkswagen have the 1.0 TSI usually found in the Polo and again in the Kia Rio called the T GDi. There are more but these are just a selected bunch.

They all vary in power and performance but the one thing they all have in common is good economy and that bit of push when you really need it.

So, is the engine worth it?

1.0 turbo engines are sticking around and just getting better and better. But are they worth getting in your new lease? The answer is yes! If you're looking for an economical petrol engine but are worried you will have to have 1.2 or above to get some punch then worry no more. The 1.0 engines have punch and economy all in one and quickly becoming a much cleaner alternative to diesel.


  • Small, quiet and lightweight engine
  • Economy can reach 70 miles per gallon
  • Has that push for overtaking and going up hills
  • Not an expensive engine
  • Some can have as much as 140 bhp


  • Not as economical as many modern diesels
  • Can rev a lot
  • Some engines still don't have much power
  • They're not perfect by any stretch and there are still a lot of economical diesels which have more power and better economy.

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