Banks Breather

Petersen's 4 Wheel & Off-Road June 2010

The new Ram-Air intake for ’99-03 Power Strokes sucks big time. But in a good way.

Engines like to breathe to make power, and what they like the most is clean air, a lot of air, and dense cold air. Banks Power’s new Ram-Air intake for diesel trucks promises all three by using an enclosed system that sucks cold air from outside the truck in through a high-flowing air filter.

Stock air intakes are good because they often have a snorkel pulling air from outside the engine compartment, but they leave room for improvement in airflow. Banks’ competitors often pull large amounts of air from under the hood, where the air is warmed by the same engine it’s trying to feed. That warmer air isn’t as dense.

Banks designed a system similar to stock, but with fewer hurtles and turbulence for the air charge to jump over, around, and through. This type of system adds cost, as it must include a free-flowing air box and a filter that must be molded to fit in the engine bay around items like batteries, wiring, and so on, but in the end Banks claims a 60.8 percent improvement in airflow over stock, and a 3 percent improvement in air density over stock. While the competition may be able to match Banks with airflow, the fact that Banks is flowing colder, denser air means its design surpass the competition.

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