Bigger is not always better

Mazda showed us years ago that bigger is not always better, when it fi rst introduced the RX-8.

The snazzy coupe caused much excitement even though it had pretty big shoes to fi ll after the Mazda RX-7.

The most interesting thing about the small, expensive types is that they are usually heavily loaded under the bonnet.

The RX-8 came out at the time when big engines still ruled and we expected maybe a V6, if Mazda decided to go small.

Instead, the Japanese manufacturer shocked the world by giving this beast a 1.3 engine, obviously turbo charged. This was the birth of a revolution.

The V-engines are dying out, it seems, and now manufacturers are content with giving their bigger cars smaller engines and turboing them to the max.

This is also a result of manufacturers trying to produce better and more fuel-effi cient cars that are also more environmentally friendly.

We take a closer look at the A3 1.4 TFSi, VW Golf 7 1.2 TSi and the Ford Focus with a 1 litre EcoBoost engine.

These three are the current hot hatches Ford Focus 1.0 Ambiente This one litre leaves most people wondering how this bigger hatchback will function on such a small engine.

Ford fl exed its engineering muscle when it brought out this new EcoBoost engine. It clearly punches above its weight.

The 1.0 replaces the 1.6 engine which is quite a drastic drop, but honestly, it is not felt at all This baby engine puts out 92kW power and 170Nm of torque, improving from 159Nm.

It accelerates from 0-100km/h in a respectable 11.1 seconds with a six-speed manual gearbox Bigger is not always better

and listed fuel consumption of about fi ve litres/100km (combined cycle), which translates to CO2 emissions improved

by 20 percent to 116g/km, due in part to fuel-saving technologies such as stop/start, a grille shutter and EcoMode.

This engine was named the International Engine of the Year for a third consecutive year in 2014.

The car itself is great car overall and still maintains the feistiness and reliability the Focus always had.

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