Ford Ranger Raptor Is Cool, Well Executed Off Roaded

One thing is for certain. The new Ford Ranger Raptor is cool, capable, and off-road ready right from the production line, and it’s definitely an interesting proposition even for big-truck-loving Americans.

Sizewise, it is a truck similar to the Colorado ZR. “Characterwise,” it is a dune-fighting fun machine designed for the most intense off-roading tasks. While we in the U.S. are still waiting for Ford to confirm that the Ranger Raptor will come, the rest of the world is basking in the greatness of the potent truck. The thing is that the Ranger Raptor for the rest of the world is actually powered by a small diesel engine - not something that’s very popular here, is it?

While I am among those who believe the Ranger Raptor in the U.S. will get a 2.3-liter EcoBoost, I have to tell you a number of reasons why you should not be disappointed even if we end up with the diesel Ranger Raptor.

1. Engine

Reasons Why You Should Not Be Disappointed By Diesel Ford Ranger Raptor
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This is the thing you should be most disappointed and most excited about. At the same time. Although it is only a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder, biturbo diesel, the new Ford engine is kinda awesome.

With a small high-pressure turbocharger and a larger low-pressure one, the 2.0-liter develops 210 horsepower.

Not very much, is it? Yet, the torque is what makes the Ranger Raptor most alluring. This small four-cylinder develops 369 pound-feet of twist. Considering that the car is precisely tailored for the sandy surfaces and off-roading adventures, so much torque is only welcomed.
Coupled with a new 10-speed automatic transmission (it is an adapted version of the one used in a Mustang), the Ranger Raptor obviously tries to make use of every ounce of power the small 2.0-liter can develop.

2. Off-Road Equipment

Reasons Why You Should Not Be Disappointed By Diesel Ford Ranger Raptor Exterior
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Although I can only report on the modifications Ford did to the Australian and the European Ranger in order to make it Raptor-name worthy, I think you will find the package more than appealing.

An assortment of improvements include the integration of:

  • Fox Racing Shox dampers
  • Dent-resistant fenders
  • Integrated tow bar
  • BF Goodrich All-Terrain tires on 17-inch wheels
  • Stiffened steel side-rails
  • Wider front and rear tracks
  • New brakes with ventilated 13-inch steel discs
  • 2.3 mm steel “bash plate” for underbody protection

Hell, let me tell you one more thing, Ford was so thorough that they’ve integrated a “Watt’s linkage rear suspension with coilover springs which ensure rear axle lateral stability off-road while also improving ride and handling”, said Mike Levine reporter, Ford North America Product Communications manager.

3. Ground Clearance

Reasons Why You Should Not Be Disappointed By Diesel Ford Ranger Raptor Exterior
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In an effort to improve the off-road capabilities, Ford integrated the suspension with longer travel and lifted the truck to 11.14 inches.

Along with the integration of new bumpers, this had favorable effects on increasing approach and departure angles. Thus, the front has an “approach angle of 32.5 degrees, ramp over angle of 24 degrees, and a departure angle of 24 degrees.”

4. Fuel consumption and performance

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Don’t laugh. Please. Bear in mind that the Ranger is not exactly light and the 2.0-liter four-cylinder isn’t exactly super powerful.

210 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque can motivate the Range Raptor for a 0-62 mph time in 10.5 seconds. It's top speed is limited to 106 mph.

Ok, it is not a speed demon like the F-150 Raptor clearly is. It could be that it is not worth the Raptor name at all! I think it is worth it, not for the speed, or the power of its engine, but for its clear off-roading proves. Not only did Ford grant it with an awesome 4x4 system, but it did include Terrain Management System with six different driving modes - normal, sport, grass/gravel/snow, mud/sand, rock, and Baja. All of them precisely tailored Ranger features for certain conditions. You can access it via the button on the steering wheel.

While one may need a bit more spirited performance, thanks to a 10-speed auto and small capacity diesel, fuel consumption of the Range Raptor diesel is, honestly, incredible.

This off-road focused truck can achieve 35 mpg.

As I have experience in driving the Amarok with a 2.0-liter diesel (which did achieve fuel consumption as low as this) I am pretty sure that with a light right foot you can achieve officially reported consumption with the Ranger Raptor diesel as well.

Conclusion

Reasons Why You Should Not Be Disappointed By Diesel Ford Ranger Raptor Exterior
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Ford Ranger Raptor isn’t as powerful as some would like. But it is perfectly off-road suited and definitely well endowed to give us some serious off-roading fun. True, the Amarok with a 3.0-liter TDI or the Colorado ZR2 are faster, but the thing is that the Ranger Raptor is precisely tailored for the Ranger drivers.

Trevor Worthington, Ford Asia Pacific’s vice-president of product development said that the team behind the Raptor actually did not consider any other engine option.

“We looked for the best overall power pack that our global customers are going to want,” he said. “If you look at Ranger, the vast majority of them sold around the world are sold with diesel engines. You look across the 200-plus markets the Ranger is sold in and 99.3 percent of them are diesels.”

This obviously sounds like Ford isn’t into creating any other version of the Ranger Raptor. Not even the one with the 2.3-liter EcoBoost. It may be the truth, as some did report seeing Ranger Raptor prototypes on the roads sounding a lot like a diesel!

Nevertheless, the Ranger Raptor will be produced in the U.S., in Ford’ Michigan production facility. I expect its release at the 2019 Detroit Motor Show.

Further reading

Reasons Why You Should Not Be Disappointed By Diesel Ford Ranger Raptor Exterior
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Read our full review of the 2019 Ford Ranger Raptor

2019 Ford Ranger Exterior
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Read our full review of the 2019 Ford Ranger

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Read more Ford news.

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