The list of best four-cylinder sports cars for 2012 contains a number of choices. Until recently however, the amount of cars powered by a 4-cylinder engine was low.
With the advent of combining direct fuel injection and turbocharging, many manufacturers are revisiting the four-cylinder engine. Building engines with this configuration enables combining the potential output of a normally aspirated six-cylinder powerplant with the fuel economy of a four-cylinder mill.
This bodes well for sports cars for yet another reason—weight reduction. Those four-cylinder turbo engines are almost always lighter than their six-cylinder counterparts. This enables the four-cylinder sports cars to exhibit more agility since they carry less weight in their noses (all of the cars on the list are front-engine models).
That high-end automakers like BMW and Mercedes-Benz have warmly embraced this strategy bodes well for the coming years. With such dynamic results from their first efforts in this regard, the future can only be brighter for the four-cylinder sports car.