Hot Rod Magazine’s Engine Issue #5
In the 70’s turbos were just starting to become an accepted viable alternative to superchargers in providing added horsepower to an engine. In fact, it was in 1970 that Gale Banks made his first self-branded turbo marine racing engine after more than a decade of building performance supercharged engines. The change came about when testing revealed that a turbo was superior in making more power with better fuel efficiency by using an engine’s wasted exhaust gas than that of a mechanically driven blower.
Turbos also proved to be less abusive to the engine, meaning an extended engine life. In that same engrail year his engine powered the boat that won the American Power Boat Association (APBA) & National Jet Boat Association (NJBA) Jet Class national championship. Soon afterwards Banks became an OEM engine supplier to the worldwide marine industry. The years that followed saw turbocharged Gale Banks Racing Engines dominate the various marine classes, shattering records in their wake.
Taking everything that was learned from his winning, record-breaking marine twin turbo program, Gale Banks set his sights on creating a complete twin turbo kit for “off-highway” automotive use based on the same recipe for Chevy’s Gen-1 350 small block. The system was available on turn-key engines in various horsepower ranges from 480, 580 all the way to 700 hp on pump gasoline… and as a do-it-yourself kit for those seeking to build their own engine. This kit was absolutely complete, containing everything that an average installer would need, and was extremely compact allowing for it (or the complete already twin turboed engine from Banks) to be dropped in almost any engine bay imaginable. The kit was featured twice in 1981, once in the May issue of Hot Rod and then taking the cover of Hot Rod’s Engine magazine.