The new Ford Ranger Raptor finally has a proper engine
Ford has revealed the new Ranger Raptor, with a twin-turbo V6 engine, two locking diffs, and a fast-tracked ticket to the UK.
Yes, the new Ranger Raptor will in fact be the first of the new Rangers to arrive in Europe, with deliveries expected in late summer. This, ahead of the standard Ranger, which will make its first European appearance in 2023.
So what is it? Much like its predecessor, it’s the top-spec performance version of the Ranger pick-up, with beefier hardware, more power and rugged looks. With the latter, we are very familiar, as the Ranger deviates very little from Raptor standard fare looks-wise. That’s to say it’s got big arches, chunky 2.3mm thick steel skid plates, knobbly tyres, big exhausts and plenty of badges, staying true to the original 2010 F-150 Raptor, as all Raptors since have done. It looks the business, so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
The big news for Europeans in what is the second Raptor to be officially available on this side of the Atlantic, is that engine. While the previous model came with a four-cylinder twin-turbo diesel – an engine that should also be available alongside this one in the new car – the new Raptor comes with the option of a twin-turbo 3.0-litre EcoBoost V6 producing a healthy 288PS (212kW) and 491Nm (310lb ft). That is unfortunately some way down on the near-400PS (294kW) of the US Raptor, thanks to European emissions regulations. Getting the US number is likely the matter of a software remap.
The engine uses a stiffer iron block – meaning modders could be looking at a darling for big boost – and also brings along an anti-lag system like the one first seen on the Ford GT supercar. When in Baja mode the anti-lag system keeps the turbos spinning for up to three seconds after the driver has let off the throttle. That means power is there and waiting more immediately, should the driver get back into the gas. As for performance? No figures have been revealed as yet, so we’ll keep you posted. It’ll be quick for a Ranger, if not Hellcat-threateningly so.
On the chassis, the Raptor has been upgraded to be stiffer and more rugged. There are all-new aluminium upper and lower control arms and long-travel suspension. The new Raptor also gets next-generation FOX 2.5-inch live valve internal bypass shocks, with Teflon-infused oil that halves friction compared with the previous-generation Raptor. These shocks work with the drive modes to deliver improved performance and comfort when required. They can stiffen the rear under acceleration, as well as in jump situations to prevent bottom outs.
For the first time also the Ranger Raptor gets advanced full-time all-wheel-drive, controlled via an on-demand two-speed transfer case and locking diffs at the front and rear. Seven drive modes control the system and engine performance, with normal, sport and slippery for on-road, and rock crawl, sand, mud/ruts and Baja for off-road.
On the inside, red highlighting and Raptor badging means you won’t forget you’re in the quick one. The new 12-inch centre touch screen and 12.4-inch digital instrument clusters are carried over from the standard Ranger, with a 10-speaker B&O sound system to boot.
“We’ve really focused on delivering a genuine performance truck with the Next-Gen Ranger Raptor,” said Dave Burn, Ford Performance chief programme engineer for Ranger Raptor. “It’s significantly faster, looks incredible, is packed with new features, and it’s the toughest Ranger we’ve ever made.”
Pricing is yet to be announced, though we’re expecting it to be somewhere in the region of £60,000, well north of the £54,000 starting price of the current car. What do you think of the new Ranger Raptor? Would you plump for this, or save up for a potential UK-bound Bronco?