We were recently faced with a situation that most of you can relate to. While towing another truck on a double-axle trailer, we pulled out to pass a semi and once the accelerator was put to the floor, the engine revved, the trans shifted down, and then our blood pressure shot up as we hoped the engine would have enough cojones to pass the big rig in enough time. Trucks are built to tow, and manufacturers do their best to properly equip new product launches with trans coolers, heavy-duty axles, and V-8 engines with enough torque to pull the weight of the trailer. When good isn’t good enough, it’s time to look for bolt-ons that can add more torque. Yes, horsepower is the sexy number that you read about in advertisements and hear about on YouTube, but for those of us that do a lot of towing, more torque is what we really want.
The new 5.3L EcoTec3 V-8 engine found in the 2014 GMC Sierra makes 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque, which is a significant improvement over the last-gen 5.3L’s 315 hp and 335 lb-ft. To help the new EcoTec3 engine breathe easier and run at its peak potential, we enlisted the help of a Volant cool-air intake and Flowmaster Force II after-cat dual exhaust. More air in and more air out will improve fuel mileage and send more pound feet of torque to the rear wheels. It was a simple install, and afterwards, the truck pulled the trailer with more gusto and an authoritative roar. JBM Motoring, in Anaheim, California, handled the install while we took the pics, and their shop is equipped to lift or lower your truck, add new wheels and tires, and install aftermarket parts.
01. The new 2014 GM trucks no longer have a plastic beauty cover over the intake manifold, so Adolfo Briseno from JBM Motoring, in Anaheim, California, started the install by using an 8mm nutdriver on the intake tube hose clamps. He could then remove the front plastic air baffle and intake tube from the throttle body and airbox.
02. After disconnecting the MAF sensor harness, the airbox was simply given a tug and pulled free from its mounting plate. Then, a 10mm socket was used to remove the four bolts securing the plate.
03. Out of the box, the new Volant cool-air intake (PN: 155536) includes everything needed to add more power and torque to the EcoTec3 V-8. Volant’s PowerCore dry filter uses a patented technology that provides 100,000 miles of maintenance-free filtration. Even with two pounds of dirt in the filter, it won’t become clogged and it can be cleaned with a shop vacuum.
04. Adolfo grabbed the new Volant intake box and positioned it in place and used three of the original 10mm bolts from the mounting plate to secure it.
05. After sliding the silicone intake tube connectors onto each end, Adolfo removed the factory MAF sensor and then transferred it onto the new Volant roto-molded intake tube.
06. The prepped intake tube could then be positioned in between the throttle body and airbox.
07. To keep the air intake 50-state CARB legal, Volant included these vent hoses for the valve covers.
08. At this stage, the PowerCore dry filter was slipped in place and tightened down with the included hose clamp.
09. Air intakes need to be enclosed to keep air inlet temps down, and Volant includes this cool-looking lid complete with a Lexan see-through panel to help keep tabs on maintenance.
10. Moving onto the exhaust install, Adolfo placed the truck up on a lift and used WD-40 and a prybar to remove the exhaust tubing from the rubber hangers.