Installing a Banks PowerPack system in a 2017 Ford V-10 Class A motorhome nets more horsepower and better sound
“You know, I really like this motorhome — but the darn thing just has too much power!” said no one. Ever.
The journey may indeed be as important as the destination when it comes to motorhome travel, but it’s safe to say that no one enjoys crawling up a grade, or trailing behind a smoking semi because there isn’t adequate power on hand to safely pass it. Ford’s ubiquitous V-10 might be reliable, but when it comes to motivating a full-size Class A, it’s no barnstormer — and the larger the coach, the more profound the dearth of power becomes.
In bygone years, there was virtually no limit to what you could unleash if you had the budget for aftermarket parts and premium fuel — a bigger carburetor, exhaust headers, camshaft and a hotter ignition system were all on the table. But with the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) cracking down on aftermarket upgrades, especially after OBD II systems were phased in during the mid-1990s, performance-enhancing options became increasingly limited.
Thankfully, there is still hope for Ford V-10 motorhome owners (both Class A and Class C) who would like more emissions-legal power. Banks Power has been an icon in the performance aftermarket industry since 1958, and the company’s patriarch, Gale Banks, has vast experience in almost every type of motorsport competition, plus standing records in everything from drag racing to Bonneville and Pikes Peak. While racing may have little to do with motorhomes in general, the performance principles remain the same: More airflow into and out of the engine means more horsepower, and in some cases, even better fuel economy thanks to greater efficiency.
To this end, the greatest improvements in the Ford V-10 come from installing the company’s entire PowerPack system, which entails replacing the restrictive air intake system, cast-iron exhaust manifolds and factory muffler. The Banks Power Ram-Air system nets a claimed 60 percent improvement in airflow over the stock system, and contains a high-flow air filter element that is larger and is both washable and reusable. The Banks TorqueTube stainless-steel exhaust headers feature beefy 5⁄8-inch flanges that won’t warp; tuned length, mandrel-bent primary tubes; and the company’s patented “PowerPickle” pulse converter that optimizes exhaust gas velocity for improved low-end torque. Finally, the stock exhaust is upgraded with a Banks DynaFlow high-performance muffler and tailpipe section, which not only improves exhaust flow, but creates a nice, mellow sound.
To see what is involved with the installation of the PowerPack system, we recently visited Gale Banks Engineering headquarters in Azusa, California, and observed as a No. 49383 system (2016-2017 Ford V-10 Class A motorhomes, $2,330) was installed on a 2017 Tiffin Allegro Open Road. Although Banks does not have performance figures for the 2017 model yet, the company’s previous systems have netted best gains of 55.6 hp and 69.5 lb-ft of torque, along with a fuel economy improvement of roughly 0.5 mpg. In our brief road test following the installation, the coach did feel stronger than stock, and the intake/exhaust sound under hard acceleration was satisfying.
If more power is something you’ve been craving from your Ford V-10-powered motorhome, Gale Banks Engineering is the answer. Quality components, combined with more than 50 years of experience in the performance aftermarket industry, can’t be beat.
Banks Power | 800-601 8072 | www.bankspower.com