1986 Banks Trans-Am Smashes Record
Banks teams up with Pontiac and Popular Mechanics to build a Trans Am that would be powered by a Gale Banks 1,500 horsepower, inter-cooled twin-turbocharged 456 ci big block engine which used Banks developed reverse deflector turbo pistons, camshaft and turbo valves. The project, having been in development for three years, was conceived to challenge a record set in 1968 of 201.744 mph. In order to compete, the car needed to qualify, which it easily did so with a speed of 211.619 right off the transport trailer.
The car went on to record speeds of 222.072, 243.463, and 252.805 mph down the track with return speeds recorded at 244.554, 260.064 mph… and a blazing run of 267.618 mph! The Banks Trans-Am scorched its way to record books destroying its target bogie with a 2-way average speed of 260.212 mph.
Another feat to take into consideration is that the car did this still sporting stock power windows, tilt steering, a/c, and functioning stereo while approaching an incredible 390 feet per second. The Banks Trans Am and the team weren’t satisfied with the 260 mph record, swearing to return the following year to assault the salt again to further push it beyond the reach of any challenger to the throne.