Reborn with EcoBoost power, Ford’s powerful pickup is all new and much improved
By Steve Turner
Photos by Steve Turner and courtesy of Ford Motor Company
Amid all the excitement about super car and R-models was a little announcement that there is an all-new F-150 Raptor on the way. As one of Ford’s most successful performance vehicles, it’s no surprise that it would continue on with the new F-150 platform, which features a lighter aluminum structure.
What might be a surprise is that its hulking 6.2-liter V-8 was replaced by a more fuel-efficient 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine. However, if you were worried that the all-new Raptor wouldn’t live up to its legacy with a smaller engine, don’t.
“It’s better,” Jamal Hameedi, Chief Engineer, Global Performance, said of the 3.5-liter EcoBoost performance. “It has more torque, which is what you want in an off-road vehicle.”
And, he should know. Jamal is the father of the Raptor. He shepherded it into production out of Ford’s off-road racing program and shocked the world with its success. With a lighter platform and a smaller, more powerful engine, the next-gen Raptor is poised to continue on that path.
“When we created the first Raptor, we set out to prove vehicle performance isn’t just measured on the street or at the track—off-road can be even more fun,” Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development, said. “The original Raptor, plus enhancements on the all-new F-150 set the bar for us to make the all-new Raptor better in every way.”
Inspired by Ford’s Trophy Truck off-road racers the new Raptor is 6 inches wider than your dad’s F-150 and rips out twin-turbo tunes courtesy of the a dual exhaust, which is a Raptor first.
The new EcoBoost 3.5 combo will exceed the 411 hp and 434 lb-ft of torque delivered by the 6.2—liter V-8, but by how much is not clear just yet. What is for sure is that it will channel that power through a new, 10-speed transmission, which with further maximized its efficiency, and a new torque-on-demand transfer case that melds the best of an all-wheel drive setup a mechanical four-wheel drive arrangement.
“The new transfer case offers better traction for a greater variety of terrain at low and high speeds—both on-road and off-road,” Jamal Hameedi, chief engineer, Ford Performance, said.
2016 F-150 Raptor Gallery