We Malaysians are quite lucky to be blessed with the Ford Ranger Raptor, but when it comes to desert trucks, nothing can compare to the OG. Following the launch of the 2021 Ford F-150 late last year, the American carmaker has now unveiled the all-new Ford F-150 Raptor, and we are seriously considering moving to the US just for a taste.
While on the surface the 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor looks somewhat evolutionary with a carry-forward 3.5-litre EcoBoost V6 engine, the changes underneath it could be monumental for the trophy truck-inspired nameplate moving forward.
The biggest change of all is at the rear, more specifically the rear suspension, which now ditches the leaf-spring suspension for a five-link coil spring set-up. As a result, total suspension travel now checks in at 14 inches up front and 15 in the rear — up from 13 and 13.9 respectively of the outgoing truck.
Aside from more suspension articulation, the coil suspension set-up also gives the all-new F-150 Raptor better stability at high speeds, be it on the road or out on the dirt track.
The new coil springs are also paired with an electronically-controlled Fox Live Valve internal bypass shocks, which automatically adjusts the damping rates independently at each corner at up to 500 times per second, which according to Ford, is the “same speed the human brain processes visual information”.
The impressive suspension numbers above are measured with the standard 35-inch wheels, but Ford is also offering the all-new F-150 Raptor with a set of brawny 37-inch tyres straight from the factory, which drops the suspension travel to 13 inches up front and 14.1 inches in the rear. Not too big of a sacrifice for some extra style points.
As we’ve mentioned at the start, the all-new Ford F-150 Raptor is powered by the same 3.5-litre twin-turbo EcoBoost engine that’s been carried over from the outgoing truck. Ford did not publish the new performance figures just yet, but a spokesperson said that it won’t stray too far from the outgoing truck – which means it will be somewhere in the region of 470 hp and 700 Nm of torque.
For extra sportiness, Ford has also equipped the all-new F-150 Raptor with an active dual exhaust system with a unique “trombone loop”, promising better sound (and from what we can hear in the video, it does sound really good), but also able to remain quiet when you’re just trying to be a good neighbour.
A more powerful Raptor R variant is slated for 2022, but no other information was provided, aside from confirming that it will be powered by a V8 mill.
All of the above are wrapped underneath a “high-strength, military-grade” aluminium alloy and composite body, which Ford once again looked to its long-running inspirations – the F-22 Raptor fighter jet – for design ideas.
The wide gaping grille and functional side vents on the fender are all inspired by the intakes of the fighter jet, while the front fenders supposedly “emulate the windswept look of dust billowing off the top of the tires at high speed”. There’s even an optional truck bed graphics package with a pattern designed to mimic the F-22’s afterburners.
Inside, Raptor-exclusive goodies include a unique steering wheel with suede inserts and aluminium shift paddles, big-bolstered seats which can be upgraded to Recaro bucket seats, and a whole load of carbon fibre and aluminium trim – if optioned.
There’s also a 12-inch digital instrument cluster, paired to a 12-inch infotainment display with Ford’s Sync 4 infotainment system, which can be updated over-the-air in the future for newer digital trail maps.