The muscle truck market is heating up.
The 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor launches on February 3, and Ram isn't too worried about having a challenger to its recently launched TRX muscle truck. On social media, Ram challenges the Blue Oval to "pop the hood" of the performance pickup to see which has the more potent powerplant.
At least in terms of displacement, the TRX is the easy winner with its 6.2-liter V8, versus the 3.5-liter V6 that's expected in the Raptor's engine bay. The Ram also boasts 702 horsepower (524 kilowatts). The Ford's output is still a mystery but probably isn't much more than the 450 hp (336 kW) from the previous-gen truck.
We don't yet know for sure what gearbox the new Raptor uses, but it likely packs a 10-speed automatic like the previous one. Meanwhile, the TRX has an eight-speed auto.
Judging by what we know so far, it seems likely that the Ram TRX is going to be the quicker truck in a straight line by reaching 60 miles per hour (96 kilometers per hour) in 4.5 seconds. The previous-gen Raptor needed 6.0 seconds to hit this same speed. The new one might cut this time slightly.
Where things get interesting is when these trucks go off-road. The previous Raptor was a technological powerhouse with features like the Trail Control off-road cruise control system. It also has high-tech adaptive dampers that are smart enough to detect whether the pickup is jumping and can stiffen things accordingly.
The TRX has some tricks, too. It has Bilstein Blackhawk E2 adaptive shocks with remote reservoirs. Like the Raptor, the system can detect whether the truck is airborne.