Save Fuel, Add Power, Break Nothing With Banks iQ | Diesel Power - May 2012

Diesel Power reviews Banks iQ

Text By Jason Thompson, Photography by David Kennedy

If you're reading this, you probably have the same habit we do of checking every truck you see to make sure it's a diesel. A truck's fender area is like a soldier's chest-having a diesel engine badge is like having a uniform full of medals. If a heavy-duty pickup doesn't have a diesel, we just shake our head in disgust. If next to the Cummins, Duramax, or Power Stroke badge we also see a Banks Power emblem, we can tell that driver has done his homework-and is interested in a balanced performance package for his truck.

Efficiency=Money In Your Pocket
It's amazing how many people still become attracted to diesel solely because they want to make smoke. Say it with us now, "Smoke does not equal power." In the past, diesel engines didn't have the controls needed to make power without smoke-but those days are over. Remember, smoke is just unused fuel. It's a sign of incomplete combustion that's taking place outside the power stroke. It's like sitting around a campfire built by a greenhorn who doesn't realize the logs need air to breathe.

Gale Banks Engineering is full of engineers who have been championing smoke-free diesel performance for years. Still not convinced? The facts speak for themselves: Banks has the world's fastest diesel drag truck, its Duramax doesn't make a puff of black smoke, and the rest of the diesel industry is gunning to beat that truck-but nobody has. So when the time comes for diesel truck owners who want the most from their street trucks, why not let Banks' experience and know-how work for you? Gale's products are safe and won't break your expensive transmission or overheat your out-of-warranty engine-although they will allow you to get more power and mileage from your diesel.

Click image for larger view

The Banks iQ is a touch-screen computer that mounts on any truck dash. On this '07 Dodge Ram with the 5.9L, it's the interface used to communicate with the Banks EconoMind tuner. The 5-inch touch-screen allows us to switch power levels and eliminates the need for separate and expensive gauges.

The Banks iQ is a touch-screen computer

The iQ also times performance runs and allows you to adjust your Banks exhaust brake safety settings on the fly.

The iQ also times performance runs

You can also pinpoint your exact position on the globe using the Banks iQ as a GPS.

pinpoint your exact position on the globe

Turn your truck into a mobile office and increase profits by saving fuel.

Turn your truck into a mobile office

Instead of spending your hard-earned money at the dealership, you can check trouble codes yourself. This is because the iQ communicates with the stock computer.

can check trouble codes

The iQ is a mini entertainment system that allows you to listen to music and watch videos. It has a built-in battery so you can take it with you if you ever want to leave your truck cab.

mini entertainment system

To install the iQ and EconoMind system, first remove the factory air cleaner assembly and you'll have access to the exhaust manifold. Drill and tap a hole for the exhaust gas temperature (EGT) thermocouple. You can do this with the manifold attached to the engine if you are careful to not allow metal chips to fall into the manifold.

remove the factory air cleaner assembly

Then we ran a wire to the fuse box to power the system-this way we don't have to tap any wires.

ran a wire to the fuse box

We unplugged the connections to the factory wiring harness and then plugged in the EconoMind. Finally, we ran the wire to the iQ through the firewall and mounted the Banks tuner to the fuse box.

unplug connectors to the wiring harness

Instead of putting the restrictive factory airbox back in the truck, we installed a Banks Ram-Air intake system. This modification helps get the most power out of the tuner since colder air is denser. More air mass decreases EGT and smoke while improving fuel economy because there is more oxygen to mix with the fuel. The 4 1/2-inch bellows allow for engine movement. This is very important, because a failure here could let in unfiltered air that will ruin an engine and turbocharger.

we installed a Banks Ram-Air intake

Banks' new Monster Sport exhaust system connects right after the factory catalytic converter. It has a 4-inch diameter, is made from stainless steel, and comes with an optional double-walled 5-inch tip with a 1/2-inch air gap so heat won't tarnish it. Since this system reduces backpressure, power and fuel economy are increased.

Monster Sport exhaust system

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