Do Velocity Stacks Work On Motorcycles? With pros and cons

Bike enthusiasts are always after the best performance. Velocity stacks are one such sector that promises to supply higher, more powerful horsepower. But do velocity stacks work on motorcycles?

Yes, it works like a wonder in improving the engine’s performance. Modern-day bikes already have a velocity stack mechanism implemented in their air intake system to provide a smoother and higher air flow volume into the engine.

They’re compatible with most bikes, and if your bike doesn’t have one already, you can choose to add it without much effort or cost.

If you’re interested to learn more, you’re at the right place. Today I’ll walk you through what a velocity stack is, whether a velocity stack works or not, are velocity stacks worth it, and the pros and cons of it. Without further ado, let’s begin.

What Is A Velocity Stack?

What Is A Velocity Stack

First, let’s correctly understand what a velocity stack is. It’s a component of some engines’ airflow intake systems. Its purpose is to create more airflow into the engine’s throttle body or carburetor smoother.

More airflow volume into the airflow intake valve means it’s much easier for fuel combustion to occur. And when more fuel is burnt, more power is consequently obtained. 

A smooth, unhindered, and consistent entry of air also ensures that the engine is functioning at peak efficiency even at high speeds when there is a lot of pressure falling on the engine.

The RPM range is well regulated at all speeds. This is great for race bikes and dirt bikes, and it mitigates overheating to an extent too.

Overall, proper airflow, higher fuel combustion success, and proper valve timing enable the engine to produce more horsepower. And all this work is carried out thanks to the velocity stack.

Do Velocity Stacks Work On Motorcycles?

Do Velocity Stacks Work On Motorcycles

Yes! Firstly, almost all modern motorbikes have velocity stack compatibility to tackle the compatibility issue. Most motorbikes already come with a velocity stack integrated into their air intake port.

The engine’s valve seats and fuel combustion intake valve is already optimized to work well with a velocity stack. A higher intake pulse gives peak performance.

But even if your motorbike doesn’t have a built-in velocity stack in place, you can install one pretty easily. They’re quite inexpensive, usually costing around $50 bucks with installation. If you’re a bike head and have experience, you can install one on your own too.

So now you know velocity stacks work on motorbikes, but should you get one?

Are Velocity Stacks Worth It?

On average, a velocity stack increases engine performance anywhere from 3 to 4%. Numbers differ for each unique motorcycle, but in general, you’ll notice a 2-3 horsepower increase from the 2000 to 5000 RPM range. Getting up to 3 HP increases on high RPMs like 8000 to 9000 are expected too. 

Although 1 to 3 HP increases might seem low, they’re usually easily noticeable on motorbikes. On cars, maybe you’d need to get at least 50 HP and upwards to notice the performance impact, but on bikes, it’s simpler. 

I argue that velocity stacks make a difference on motorcycles because –

  • Better Handling & Control

A few scales increase in HP means you get more power out of your engine and it has improved volumetric efficiency. This impacts handling and overall control of the bike on the road too. 

The impact is also best noticed when you’re riding at high speeds. As a velocity stack ensures a consistent flow of air even during heavy loads at high speeds, you won’t notice any performance drops. The efficiency and power output from the engine should be more consistent, and that will help with handling and overall control of the bike a ton on fast-paced rides.

  • Engine Health

Velocity stacks help in engine health too. They’re like streamlined air filters, ensuring a sufficient amount of air is flowing for fuel combustion at all times. Without it, there would’ve been discrepancies and the engine wouldn’t have received the right amount of fuel it demands. 

By fulfilling this demand, velocity stacks keep the engine’s health in check. Sufficient entry of air equals proper combustion; thus, no parts are damaged, and the engine works at higher efficiency. Engine damage is lowered in this way.

So, if you think the benefits of a velocity stack are appealing, you can go for it without hesitation. They’re sure to increase engine efficiency, and performance, and provide a much better driving experience. 

Which Should You Choose: Short Vs Long Velocity Stacks?

Generally, there are two lengths of velocity stacks available, short and long. These two lengths of stack operate with different purposes, and which one to choose among these two depends on your personal preference.

The velocity stack’s length impacts the power, which is associated with the motorcycle engines airflow. Therefore, the long velocity is for those who want low-mid range but better power in the motorcycle’s RAM air effect. 

On the other hand, the short velocity stack assists the engine positively, which generates energy in the upper RAM band to improve the RAM air effect.

Velocity Stack Vs Cold Air Intake

Both velocity stack and cold air intake work to improve the efficiency of your motorcycle’s engine. However, though they work for the same ultimate purpose but still have some fine differences in their functioning purposes.

Purpose Of Velocity Stack

A velocity stack is specially manufactured to increase the engine’s volumetric efficiency. It allows the throttle to inhale more air into the engine while acting as resonating pipes.

In easy words, the velocity stack operates to make the airflow smoother. It ensures accurate throttle input and allows even air entry into the intake tract at high velocities with the flow stream through the pipe walls. 

This way, the stack is able to provide the engine with more air which results in burning more fuel and generates a power boost.

Moreover, the velocity stack’s length is also a significant factor when it comes to the efficiency of the airflow as it impacts the performance gain. 

Purpose Of Cold Air Intake

Cold air is better and denser for the cylinder to burn fuel and increase horsepower. It’s because cold air includes more oxygen molecules than warm air. Thus, feeding more cold air enriched with oxygen results in a more intense fire.

Therefore, a cold air intake system feeds the engine more oxygen that produces intense explosions; hence the engine generates more horsepower and improves engine efficiency.

Which One To Choose?

The choosing process is subjective since none of this two ensure very peak performance. If you want smoother airflow and burn more fuel to improve the engine’s maximum performance, go for the velocity stack. On the other hand, you should go for the cold air intake if you want to increase horsepower by feeding air with oxygen to improve the engine’s performance.

Motorcycle Velocity Stacks Pros And Cons

Here are the pros and cons of motorcycle velocity stacks:


  • Offers more horsepower compared to filtered air.
  • Helps to make entry of air and airflow smoother
  • Supplies additional air to the engine that generates more power
  • It keeps the intake valve open during the piston begins.


  • Due to contaminations and ingested airborne abrasives, stack increases wear in the engine.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much extra horsepower can I expect from adding a velocity stack?

By incorporating a velocity stack, you can expect around 1 to 3 extra horsepower output from your engine. As mentioned in more detail in the article, although it might seem low, those extra few bits can help a ton in how your bike operates. 

Can I install a velocity stack on my own?

Yes, if you have the enthusiasm and experience. They’re a small, inexpensive component connected to the air intake valve and attached to it without any complicated process. If you feel unsure, though, contact a proper mechanic or a friend with more experience. 

How much do velocity stacks cost?

Most 50mm velocity stacks cost no more than $20. You might find cheaper deals at your local bike repair store. With professional help, you can get everything done easily under 50 bucks. 

Do velocity stacks decrease noise from the engine?

To some extent, you shouldn’t expect a drastic change. With higher volume, filtered air is passed to the engine, and there’s better combustion; the efficiency and higher power output usually result in the engine working more optimally. This removes unwanted noise. But it won’t be anything drastic; it’ll just be smoother and how it’s supposed to be a proper condition. 

Final Words

Hopefully, by going through this post, you’ll now know the answer to, “do velocity stacks work on motorcycles”. Most motorbikes already have them preinstalled, but if yours doesn’t, you can easily apply one.

In the end, if you’re thinking of getting one for your bike, it depends on whether you’re that kind of bike enthusiast to add a part on your own. Most bikers get by with the bike as they bought it. 

But customizations are always fun, and if you find that appealing, I’d recommend going for a velocity stack. It’ll make your riding much smoother. Good luck!

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