I used to own a 1983 Ford T-bird turbo coupe with a 2.3-liter 4-cylinder, and it had a few of the drawbacks you've probably heard from your buddies. The newer turbos are so much better.
A lot of the cons of turbo engines of that era no longer apply, as the latest generation of them are quite good. They allow a smaller engine to produce more power when you need it, while still returning good fuel economy when you are cruising.
Turbos (like my T-bird) used to have a pronounced lag before the power swelled, but low inertia turbos with variable geometry and electronically controlled boost curves no longer have this problem--they deliver power and torque across the entire rev range without delay. Most of the new systems are intercooled (the compressed air is cooled to become even denser so more of it will fit into the cylinder), so they're even more efficient than the older ones.
Electronic engine controls have greatly incresed the reliability of turbo engines. The amount of boost is now tightly controlled to meet the requirements of the situation, in the same way that iginition and valve timing have been electronically controlled for quite awhile.
And think about all of those 18-wheelers you see hauling freight every day. They've been turbocharged for years and years. And truckers can't afford downtime. If turbocharged engines had serious reliability problems, the trucking industry wouldn't use them. And all of those diesel cars you hear about in Europe and Asia (and there are a LOT of them)--they're virtually all turbo-diesels.
If I liked the car and the price, I wouldn't hesitate if it were a turbo.