Asia Pacific will get it first in 2018, but a U.S. version is expected to follow.
A dream come true for some people, Ford has confirmed the Ranger is going to spawn a sporty Raptor derivative. It will carry the same suffix as the Blue Oval’s other high-performance pickup truck, the F-150 Raptor, and will aim to take the Ranger to a “whole new level” once it will go on sale next year.
Technical specifications have not been provided, but at least we do have a fast-paced teaser video showing the first-ever Ranger Raptor being put through its paces while undergoing testing in Australia. Rumors of a go-faster version have been swirly around the Internet since 2015 and now we know for sure that it’s coming.
The biggest piece of the puzzle that’s missing right now is the identity of the engine, with some saying it will be a gasoline unit while others are suggesting it will get a diesel. From what we can hear, chances are the Ranger Raptor will utilize a gasoline mill, with the 3.5-liter V6 borrowed from the F-150 Raptor being a safe guess. It pumps out 450 horsepower (335 kilowatts) and 510 pound-feet (691 Newton-meters) of torque, so that should prove to be plenty of EcoBoost muscle. Another possibility is represented by the lesser 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 rated at 325 hp (242 kW) and 400 pound-feet (542 Nm) from the latest F-150.
If it will go down the diesel route as suggested by a prototype spotted last month in the United States, an upgraded iteration of the five-cylinder, 3.2-liter available with 197 hp (147 kW) and 346 lb-ft (470 Nm) in the lesser Ranger models seems plausible. Maybe Ford will decide to offer both engines, depending on market. Regardless, a ten-speed automatic transmission jointly developed with General Motors will likely be in charge of channeling the power to all four wheels.
The standard Ranger set to be built in Michigan is scheduled to arrive in the U.S. for the 2019 model year, but it seems unlikely the Raptor will be available from day one, hence why the 2020MY is a more realistic scenario. Meanwhile, the fast midsize pickup truck is pinned for a 2018 launch in the Asia Pacific region.
Gallery: Ford Ranger Raptor teaser
Seize the thrill; Ford Presents the First Ever Ranger Raptor
MELBOURNE, 7 September 2017 – Ford Motor Company today announced that the hugely popular Ford Ranger pickup truck will be available in an off-road performance variant for the first time. Arriving in Asia Pacific in 2018, the purpose-built, desert-racing inspired pickup truck joins the Ford Performance family, carrying the name ‘Ford Ranger Raptor’.
Designed and engineered to deliver an adrenaline pumping experience, Ford Ranger Raptor sports a head-turning exterior look that exudes toughness as well as a level of capability and off-road performance never before seen in the mid-size pickup truck segment.
Sharing the same nomenclature as the F-150 Raptor, the world’s most extreme production truck, Ford Ranger Raptor will create a class of its own among off-road performance vehicles.
“We are very excited to bring Asia Pacific’s toughest and smartest pickup truck to a whole new level,” said Trevor Worthington, vice president, product development, Ford Asia Pacific. “Ford Ranger Raptor will offer Ranger fans a fantastic opportunity to own an authentic off-road performance version of their favorite truck for the first time.”
Building on the success of the class-leading Ford Ranger, the best-selling pickup truck in a number of markets across Asia Pacific, Ford Ranger Raptor brings the thrilling off-road performance capabilities of the ‘Raptor’ to the Ranger for the first time ever. With its bold appearance and extreme, off-road performance features, Ford Ranger Raptor represents a new and distinctive breed of truck.
“Combining the Raptor’s advanced off-road capabilities with the versatility of the Ranger is a significant accomplishment for Ford’s world-class engineering and design teams,” said Jamal Hameedi, chief engineer, Ford Performance.
Ford Ranger Raptor joins F-150 Raptor to advance the globally renowned Ford Performance DNA, complementing the on-road high performance lineup of Ford GT, Ford Mustang Shelby, Focus RS and Focus ST.