Ford Ranger Raptor – ‘Built Ford Tough’ & loaded with Ford Performance DNA

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Ford’s new off-road performance pick-up truck, the Ford Ranger Raptor, has just been revealed in Thailand earlier today. The ultimate Ranger is purposefully designed, built and tested to set a benchmark as the only factory-built performance truck across Asia Pacific. Designed by Ford Performance team for the true enthusiast off-roader, Ford Ranger Raptor strengthens Ford’s commitment to deliver “Built Ford Tough” pickup trucks to customers in Asia Pacific.

Powering the Ford Ranger Raptor is a new 2.0 liter bi-turbo diesel engine that makes 213 PS and 500 Nm of torque, mated to a 10-speed transmission. Interestingly, the 10-speed gearbox is shared with the F-150 Raptor and has been created with high strength steel, aluminum alloys and composites to optimize durability and weight. All this adds up to allow more accurate and quicker shift timings.

“We are so excited and proud to unleash this vehicle to the public, driving it really makes you feel like a hero,” said Jamal Hameedi, chief engineer, Ford Performance. “The Ford Performance team is excited to extend the Raptor name from our flagship off-road performance F-150 to Ranger. Just like the F-150 Raptor, the Ranger Raptor builds upon the core capability of the range of vehicles it comes from and carries the unmistakable Ford Performance DNA appearance.”

At the front, a stunning new grille takes styling cues from the world’s first factory-built high performance off road truck, the F-150 Raptor. The iconic block FORD lettering proudly positioned within the grille design is unmistakable when emerging from a dust cloud. A frame mounted front-bumper system is designed to offer desert durability performance and a distinctive presence. The front bumper also includes new LED fog lamps with functional air-curtain ducts, which help to reduce air resistance of the body.

Using composite materials, the front fenders not only look tough, but resist dents and dings often associated with off-road usage. The flared shape of the fenders are required for the long travel suspension and oversized tires. The exterior color palate offerings include Lightning Blue, Race Red, Shadow Black, Frozen White, as well as a unique Hero color for the Ranger Raptor, Conquer Grey. Contrasting Dyno Grey accents helps to accentuate the vehicle’s look even further.

Vehicle stance is noticeably bigger from every angle, standing at an impressive 1873 mm tall, 2180 mm wide and 5398 mm long, with wider front and rear tracks at 1710 mm. Ground clearance is increased to 283 mm, while the approach angle of 32.5°, ramp over angle of 24°, and departure angle of 24° as a package are superior to anything seen before.

At the rear, a modified rear bumper comes with an integrated tow bar and two recovery hooks rated at 3.8 tonnes. Updated styling to the rear includes flush sensor bezels and specially packaged and styled tow connectors. Providing an abundance of space, the 1560 mm x 1743 mm tray has been designed with the weekend explorer in mind, while the 2500 kg towing capacity also accounts for dirt bikes or jet-skis, as well as traditional work needs during the week.

Inside, Ranger Raptor offers a tailored Ford Performance DNA interior design with a high level of craftsmanship, harmonious colours and durable materials suitable for both off-road driving and everyday use. The seats are specially designed for off-road high speed performance support, allowing the driver to engage in enthusiastic handling, while also providing superior on-road comfort. The use of technical suede on the seats for additional occupant grip shows the practicality behind the material choice.

The Ranger Raptor’s chassis frame is a new unique frame that is specifically designed for the vehicle to travel at high speeds off road and endure the punishment that off road racing provides. Ranger Raptor’s innovative new coilover rear suspension uses a Watt’s link setup with solid rear axle to provide superior lateral control off-road while also helping improve ride and handling.

The frame design incorporates new geometry for the large suspension, providing the Raptor DNA increased track and wheel travel. Built to withstand high-impact off-road events, Ranger Raptor’s frame consists of various grades of high-strength low-alloy (HSLA) steel. The stiffened side-rails are made from increased HSLA grade steel to absorb off-road high speed impacts.

The front accommodates strengthened protruding shock absorber towers, while a new bespoke coilover rear suspension with an integrated Watt’s linkage allows the axle to move up and down with very little lateral movement. Two recovery hooks rated at 4.5 tonnes can be found at the front, plus reinforced spare tyre mounting cross-members for the larger 17-inch Raptor rims.

The braking system on the Ranger Raptor offers extreme stopping power through new and bespoke components. At the front, twin-piston calipers have been increased by 9.5 mm in diameter, while the ventilated rotors are an impressive 332 x 32 mm in size. At the rear, Ranger Raptor comes with disc brakes with a brake actuation master cylinder and booster to increase braking performance. The 332 x 24 mm rear rotor is ventilated and coupled with a new 54 mm calipers.

“The standout experience of the Ranger Raptor, hands down, is how far you can push it off-road versus any other available production road vehicle in our markets, and still ride like a millionaire on-road,” said Damien Ross, Chief Program Engineer, Ranger Raptor, Ford Motor Company.

“Everything about the Ranger Raptor builds on the already outstanding sophisticated feel and functional capability of the Ranger, and then goes further. From a driving dynamic fun standpoint, it is really an exceptionally special vehicle.”

Raptor’s race-bred suspension has been specifically crafted to tackle undulating terrain at high-speed while remaining in complete control and comfort. The Position Sensitive Damping (PSD) shock absorbers (dampers) provide higher damping forces at full jounce and rebound to enable better off-road capabilities, and lower damping forces in the mid-travel zone for a class leading plush ride during on-road trips. These settings are truly calibrated for the best of both worlds.

The dampers are exclusively manufactured by Fox Racing Shox with 46.6 mm piston for front and rear. Designed for off-road endurance terrain, the dampers, coupled with the long travel suspension, allow for an unsurpassed damping performance off-road and a plushest of rides on-road thanks to Internal Bypass technology. Holding them in place are the forged aluminium upper arms and cast aluminium lower arms to facilitate greater suspensionGiven the unforgiving terrain Ranger Raptor has been developed for, it needed an aggressive set of tyres to keep it stable on and off-road. All-terrain BF Goodrich 285/70 R17 tyres have been specially developed for the Ranger Raptor. Holding a strong presence, each tyre measures 838mm in diameter and 285 mm in width. The design offers a tough sidewall to take on all environments with confidence, a super grippy tread to extend owners’ adventure time on and off-road and an aggressive off-road tread pattern which provides grip in wet, mud, sand and snow conditions.

Ranger Raptor comes with a Terrain Management System (TMS) offering six modes for various driving experiences, which can be selected via a dedicated five-button switch located on the steering wheel. Each mode has been calibrated to offer the best possible combination of technologies working in unison to tackle the chosen terrain or driving style with aplomb. These include: Normal and Sport modes (on-road) and Grass/Gravel/Snow, Mud/Sand, Rock, and Baja modes (off-road).

The Ford Ranger Raptor will be produced in Ford Thailand Manufacturing (FTM) using Ford’s latest state of the art manufacturing techniques and facilities. It shouldn’t be too long before this arrives on Malaysian roads; we’ll update as soon as we get news.

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From supercar spotting on the streets of Kuala Lumpur, Won has moved onto the realms of motoring journalism since 2011. He has a keen eye for automotive photography, a penchant for fast cars, and the occasional hunger for munching corners.

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