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Banks 6.6L Duramax Crate Engine

575 Turnkey Horse Power

David Kennedy
Nov 1, 2012
Photographers: David Kennedy
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A. Garrett water-cooled,VNT turbocharger
B. Bosch high-pressure CP3-based common-rail injection with solenoid injectors
C. Banks cast-aluminum valve covers clean up the looks of the engine and make room for custom valvetrain parts
D. Features traditional GM 90-degree bellhousing-to-transmission mounting pattern, a GM flexplate, and high-torque starter
E. Cast-iron exhaust manifolds
F. Rear oil pan sump
G. Engine weighs 895 pounds, has a maximum speed of 4,400-rpm, and features a 16.8:1 compression ratio
H. Banks billet-aluminum front-facing dual thermostat housing
575 hp*,Turnkey, and There’s Not a Used Part In It
Till now, if you wanted a Duramax V-8 in anything other than the fullsize GM truck it came in—your best option was to buy a complete ’01 to ’10 Duramax truck. You’d take that pickup, strip it of the engine, wiring, gauge cluster, body controller, transmission, transmission control unit, air intake, throttle pedal, fuel filter, accessory drive, starter motor—the list goes on and on—and then you could begin swapping all those things into the car or truck of your dreams.
The reason for doing all that was because you’d need so many pieces to get the Duramax engine to run, it was cheaper to buy the whole vehicle than try to collect the parts individually. The problem with this method was it was a ton of work, you’d typically have to hold on to the donor truck until you got your Duramax swap perfected (in case you needed any more parts), and at the end of the day—you’d still have a used engine in your pride and joy.
That’s all changed now. For the first time in the history of diesel performance, you can now buy a 100-percent, brand-new diesel crate engine. And as you no doubt read on the valve covers, it’s coming from Gale Banks Engineering. Banks calls this engine the 866T, that’s 8 for the number of cylinders, 6.6 for the engine size in liters, and T for turbocharged.
Banks 866T Engine
General Motors has built the Duramax engine in Ohio for more than 12 years, and yes, your local dealership can sell you a Duramax long-block for around $16,000. At that point you’d still need to get an engine computer, wiring harness, and a zillion other parts. It’s almost like GM doesn’t want to sell you a complete engine for your project—and that’s partially true. Instead, GM has partnered with Gale Banks to supply car, boat, and hot-rod builders like us with Duramax engines in a configuration that works for our needs. The engine itself begins life with all-new parts that were put together on the DMAX assembly line. From there, Banks adds its AutoMind ECU and wiring harness, and provides a fully developed engine calibration for power ratings from 275 to 475 hp.
Want more power than that? No problem. Banks also has a 575hp package (pictured) that makes 900 lb-ft and is based on the ’11-and-newer, heavier-duty LML Duramax block and cylinder heads. The 575hp engine uses a CP3 injection pump, and the heads are modified to accept standard Duramax solenoid-type injectors. The 575hp package also comes with Banks cast-aluminum valve covers, a high-volume oil system and piston cooling nozzles, high-flow Garrett water-cooled VNT turbocharger, Banks exhaust manifolds and turbocharger up-pipes, heavy-duty Banks viscous vibration damper (with 8 to 12 rib drive belt options), and provisions for bolting directly to the damper.
Want more power still? Banks can handle that, too. All its motorsport, supercharger, nitrous, dual CP3s, intake manifolds, intercoolers, and twin-turbo options can be incorporated into a Duramax crate engine. The top-of-the-line package is its streetable supercharged and turbocharged 1,200hp engine combo. If you want more power than that, talk to the Banks Engineering team about using two 866Ts in your project!
* Owner’s manual, installation guide, and six-month limited warranty (material and workmanship) included with the 275 to 475hp engines. Prices for ready-to-run engines with ECU begin at $15,980.