One thing the Ford Ranger Raptor doesn’t do is hide its light under a bushel
Pick-Up Reviewed: Ford Range Raptor 3.0L V6 EcoBoost 10-speed Auto 4WD
This beast of a pick-up deserves to be measured in proper feet and inches measurements: 6’ 5” tall, 6’ 9” wide and 18’ long; in Code Orange paintwork, this is a vehicle that you cannot miss, even from a distance. Chunky BF Goodrich All-Terrain tyres encompass 17” black wheels and in case you weren’t sure if this is actually a Raptor model, it shouts it from the rear flanks and tailgate – whilst you’re around the rear of this leviathan, check out those chrome-tipped exhausts, one at each corner. Special graphics complete the stunning exterior.
On the inside it’s a bit more subtle but not much, with sports seats clad in leather and alcantara in dark grey with orange accents and stitching; the steering wheel is similar with a racing 12 o’clock band in orange and the same colour is picked out on the automatic shifter and the air vents. It’s a great place to be not just because you sit high up but also it feels premium, with great quality materials and the way the design is executed. Comfort is key and this truck will cover vast distances over smooth and rough terrain whilst accommodating up to five adults – headroom is brilliant as you would expect and there’s elbow room aplenty too.
For all your infotainment and comfort requirements the standard kit includes a 10-speaker B&O sound system, 12” touchscreen, Android Auto and Apple Car Play and a wireless charge pad for your phone. In the winter your hands and bottom will be glad of heating elements and for those Baja conditions, full dual-zone climate control.
Motive power is diesel or petrol-fuelled but this one had the 3.0L V6 Ecoboost mated to a 10-speed automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive. Crunching the numbers reveals 292 PS of power and 583 Nm of torque which will take you from 0-62 MPH in 7.9 seconds and a top speed of 111. However, don’t expect fuel consumption to be kind to your wallet: 20 MPG is the norm and maybe 25 if you’re very careful with what your right foot does.
Among this brutality lies an extremely capable vehicle with seven selectable drive modes, including Sport, Slippery, Rock Crawl and Baja; the Fox bypass shocks also have a three-way adjustment. Not going off-road, well there’s adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, Active Park Assist and a 360-degree camera.
Round town this does feel like a big vehicle but trust me you get respect from drivers of punier cars and vans. People on the street stare either in disgust or because they’re jealous! At low speed the ride is not that bad and the adjustable steering is well weighted but never too heavy; it’s actually easier to place on the road than you might think.
Take it out of town though, stick in manual mode for flappy paddles, turn it to Sport mode and bury the throttle and you’ll be in for a treat – it just takes off up the road with a roar that puts a big grin on your face. And don’t worry when you get to the twisty bits of road because it handles those with aplomb too, feeling entirely planted and with minimal roll; the fact that there’s a big, solid chunk of rubber at each corner gives you a little extra confidence. OK, so it doesn’t even pretend to be a sports car but has its own unique way of being fun. I didn’t get an opportunity to go off-road but I know it would be a hoot to drive on the loose stuff and take boulder-strewn inclines and descents in its stride – something for another day. On tarmac though, it’s brilliant.
With £3,500 worth of options this Ford Ranger Raptor has an on-the-road price tag of £63,544, which is a lot of money for a pickup truck. A number of questions spring to mind: Is this a sensible vehicle? No. Is it practical? Yes. Does it make sense in the real world? No. Should you sometimes let your heart rule your head? Yes. Would you have the most fun possible in a pick-up truck for the money? Yes. Should you buy one? Of course you should!!!
Paul Beard’s interest in cars started about 36 years ago when he bought his first motoring magazine. He has always been passionate about cars and motorsport ever since. Paul has been fortunate to own and drive a wide variety of cars. Ultimately he enjoys writing about them too.