FRANKFURT -- Robert Bosch GmbH is muscling into the fast-growing global market for turbochargers.
The German supplier said its joint venture with Mahle GmbH soon will start producing turbochargers for a European customer that will introduce it in January.
Bosch did not name the European customer.
Bosch initially will produce turbochargers for a four-cylinder diesel engine and a three-cylinder gasoline engine.
The company said it has production contracts with six automakers and expects to produce 1 million turbochargers annually by 2013.
Most of those turbochargers are intended for diesel engines.
Bosch's entry into the turbocharger market seems likely to trigger a bigger struggle for market share.
Honeywell Inc. and BorgWarner Inc. are the world's top turbocharger producers, and Continental AG is rolling out its own product.
Automakers are eager to adopt turbochargers because it lets them use smaller, more fuel-efficient engines without sacrificing performance.
Bosch estimates that global automakers will install 12 million units by 2012 or 2013.
Europe is the leading market; most diesel engines sold there are equipped with turbochargers. But analysts expect fast growth in the United States as Ford Motor Co. and other automakers turbocharge their engines to meet tougher corporate average fuel economy standards.