Naturally Aspirated or Turbocharged: 2018 Toyota C-HR vs Chevy Trax Drag Race! [Video]

Displacement or forced induction? The choice is yours.

Most automakers have leaned toward turbocharging in their new models. Take Chevrolet, for example. From the all-new turbocharged engine in the Silverado to their smallest crossovers, like the Trax – all sport turbocharged, four-cylinder engines. Toyota, on the other hand, takes another route. Their C-HR still houses a larger, naturally-aspirated engine. The company also takes a different philosophy with transmissions. While Chevrolet sticks to ordinary automatics, Toyota mainly uses CVTs to get the best possible fuel economy. Today, we’re putting these two philosophies to the test. We’re racing the 2018 Toyota C-HR against the Chevrolet Trax. Which one in this Toyota C-HR vs Chevy Trax drag race will emerge victorious? Check out the video above to find out!

2018 Toyota C-HR vs Chevy Trax
[Photo: TFLcar]
Let’s start with the specs for the Trax. Chevy’s diminutive crossover packs a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine making 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque. That power’s geared through a six-speed automatic transmission to all four wheels. The Trax weighs 3,267 pounds in all-wheel drive configuration.

The Toyota C-HR, on the other hand, uses a 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder. Despite the lack of a turbocharger, its larger displacement means it makes more power. Toyota’s smallest crossover churns out 144 horsepower. However, it produces slightly less torque, at just 139 lb-ft. The C-HR also uses a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) rather than a traditional automatic. CVTs are well known for their economy, but suffer against automatics due to their initial unresponsiveness when you push them in anger. Like the Trax, the C-HR also weighs around 3,300 pounds, and is only available in front-wheel drive.

So, the question of the drag race comes down to this: Is a small, turbocharged engine faster than a larger, naturally-aspirated engine? All right, they’re both going to be slow, but the results are closer than you might think! Stay tuned to TFLcar and TFLnow for more news, views and real-world, mile-high drag race reviews.

Zach Butler
Zach is a writer and Managing Editor for TFLcar. He has held a lifelong passion for cars, with a particular interest in hot hatchbacks and off-road rigs. Born and raised in Colorado, Zach holds a Bachelor's Degree in English from Colorado State University, and is based in Boulder, Colorado.