With cars becoming increasingly complex, the need for efficient and effective aerodynamics is more important than ever before. Enter the Subaru vortex generator, a small device that claims to improve your car’s performance by altering the way air flows over the vehicle. But is it really worth the investment? Let’s take a look.
What are Subaru vortex generators?
Subaru vortex generators, also known as VGs, are small aerodynamic devices that can be attached to the roof or rear of a car. They are designed to alter the flow of air over the vehicle, reducing drag and improving stability. The generators work by creating vortices, which are small spinning air currents that alter the airflow, causing it to stick to the surface of the car for longer. This, in turn, reduces the amount of air turbulence and drag that the vehicle experiences, resulting in improved fuel efficiency and overall performance.
How do they work?
Subaru vortex generators are designed to be installed on vehicles in specified locations, typically the roof or the rear of the car. The location of the VGs depends on the specific model and year of the car, as well as the desired effect. In general, however, they are mounted in a specific arrangement to optimize airflow and reduce drag.
Once installed, the VGs work by altering the behavior of the air passing over and around your car. As the air flows over the surface of the car, it creates what is called a "boundary layer." This is a thin layer of air that sticks to the surface of the car due to friction. The boundary layer is the region of air on which the VGs work.
The VGs create small vortices in the boundary layer, which act to "energize" the air passing over them. This helps to keep the boundary layer attached to the surface of the car for longer, reducing the amount of turbulence and drag the vehicle experiences.
What benefits do they provide?
The main benefit of Subaru vortex generators is improved aerodynamics, which can lead to better fuel efficiency, higher top speeds, and improved handling. This is particularly true for vehicles that were not originally designed with high aerodynamic performance in mind.
The effects of VGs on your car’s performance may not be immediately noticeable, but over time, you may notice a significant difference in fuel efficiency and performance. In particular, you may notice an improvement in your car’s stability at high speeds, as well as a reduction in wind noise.
Are they worth the investment?
Whether or not Subaru vortex generators are worth the investment depends on a number of factors, including the make and model of your car, your driving habits, and the specific VGs you choose to install.
One study conducted by Car and Driver found that the addition of VGs did provide a noticeable improvement in the aerodynamics of the vehicle, resulting in a 0.01 drag reduction. This may not sound like much, but it could lead to significant improvements in fuel efficiency and performance over time.
However, it is worth noting that the benefits of VGs may not be as noticeable on a typical passenger car as they would on a vehicle designed for racing or high-speed driving. Additionally, the effects of VGs can be difficult to measure accurately, as they are highly dependent on external factors such as wind speed and angle.
Subaru vortex generators may not be a necessary upgrade for every car owner, but they can certainly help to unlock the potential of your vehicle. By reducing drag and improving aerodynamics, VGs can lead to improved fuel efficiency, performance, and stability, making them a worthwhile investment for some drivers.
That being said, it is important to note that the effects of VGs can vary widely depending on a number of factors. Before making any upgrades to your car, be sure to do your research and consult with a qualified professional. By taking the time to make informed decisions about your car’s upgrades, you can help to ensure that you are getting the most out of your investment.
Are vortex generators specific to Subaru cars?
No, vortex generators can be installed on any car. However, Subaru is one of the car manufacturers that have developed and popularized VGs.
Can vortex generators be installed by anyone?
While vortex generators are relatively easy to install, it is recommended to have them installed by a professional to ensure proper placement and function.
Can vortex generators negatively impact my car’s performance?
If installed incorrectly or in the wrong location, vortex generators can actually increase drag and decrease performance. It is important to follow installation guidelines and specifications closely to maximize the benefits of VGs.