The wait is finally over. Here are the first official images and specifications for the first ever 2019 Ford Ranger Raptor as it makes its world debut in Bangkok, Thailand. What is the recipe to make a badass off-road version of the Ranger midsize truck? How about taking an F-150 Raptor and just shrinking it a little in overall dimensions?
The Ranger Raptor has all of the features and looks that you have been accustomed to with the F-150 Raptor, but in a smaller package and with a bi-turbo diesel engine to boot.
Under the hood is a 2.0-liter diesel with two turbos mounted in series. Ford says – there is a smaller turbo and a larger one that work together to provide quick response and high output. Ford is rating the engine at 210 horsepower and 368.8 lb-ft of torque. The engine is mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission that is very similar to the one that is currently found in other F-150s.
For comparison, the 2.8-liter turbo-diesel in the Chevy Colorado ZR2 is rated at 186 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque.
What are the chances of us seeing this diesel engine or the Ranger Raptor in the United States? Ford has said nothing about this. The company is working to bring us the regular US-spec Ranger in early 2019. Let’s all hope the Ranger Raptor is not far behind.
The baby Raptor is riding on a frame that is constructed from high-strength steel. The track has been widened by about six inches over a standard Ranger to a total 67.3 inches. This is about 1.5 inches wider than a Colorado ZR2 and about 3 inches wider than a Tacoma TRD Pro.
The Ranger Raptor use FOX Racing Shocks front and rear. Front shock towers have been reinforced, while the rear use a unique coil-over spring design with Watt’s linkage. Ford says this allow for vertical movement of the rear suspension without much lateral motion.
The suspension is setup to give the Ranger Raptor 11.15 inches of ground clearance. This is once again considerably more than the Colorado ZR2 and the Tacoma TRD Pro.
The little Raptor is riding on 17-inch rims and 33-inch tall BFGoodrich KO2 all-terrain tires. Underneath are upgraded steel skid plates to protect critical components.
The baby Raptor has the visual impact reminiscent of the F-150 Raptor. There are wide-body fenders and the FORD spelled out in the grille. There are unique Raptor front and rear bumpers and integrated tow hooks. There is a hitch in the back, and this Raptor is rated to tow up to 5,500 lbs.
The truck features 32.5 degrees of approach, 24 degrees of breakover, and 24 degrees of departure. These numbers are overall not class leading, but are competitive.
Here is our recent test of the Chevy Colorado ZR2 versus the Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro.
The inside of this right-hand drive Raptor is also familiar. Seats with “Raptor” badging and a red ring around the top center of the steering wheel. The Ranger Raptor offers many of the same 4×4 controls, including the Terrain Management System with six modes.
- Normal mode – emphasizing comfort, fuel economy and drivability
- Sport mode – responsive for spirited on-road driving. This means fast, crisp gear shifts at higher engine speeds to aid throttle response. The mapping reacts to increased demand inputs from the driver by holding gears longer and downshifting more aggressively.
- Grass/Gravel/Snow mode – Designed to inspire safe and confident driving on off-road slippery and uneven surfaces. This is done through smoother gear shifts and second-gear starts, minimizing the probability of wheel slip.
- Mud/Sand mode – Vehicle responsiveness is tuned for optimum traction and momentum in deep, deformable surfaces like loose sand and mud. This is achieved by maintaining lower gears with high torque.
- Rock mode – Used specifically for low-speed rocky terrain where smooth controllability is key.
- Baja mode – Vehicle responsiveness is tuned for high-speed off-road performance, just like drivers need in the famous Baja Desert Rally. In this mode, vehicle systems like Traction Control are pared back in terms of intervention to allow spirited off-road driving without fighting the vehicle’s on-board systems. Gear selection is optimized for maximum performance, and the mapping will hold gears longer and downshift more aggressively.
We can only hope that Ford brings the Ranger Raptor stateside. In the meantime, we will have to admire it from afar.