Ford Ranger Raptor takes wing in South Africa

Brian Joss – One of the most highly anticipated new models for 2019, the all-new Ford Ranger Raptor is now available in South Africa. With Ford performance DNA at its core, it  pushes the limits in technology, innovation and driving excitement, according to the car maker.

“We are excited to unleash the performance version of the highly successful Ford Ranger, which is also produced at our Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria,” says Doreen Mashinini, General Manager Marketing at Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa.

“The Raptor delivers bold and aggressive styling matched with immense off-road capability that totally rewrites the rules for the 4×4 pickup segment. We have a passion for bringing the best to our customers, and Ranger Raptor showcases the best of Ford Performance’s expertise in performance vehicle design and engineering.”

Ready to set a new benchmark in high-speed, off-road capability, it  packs a hefty punch in the pickup segment. The commanding presence delivered by the ultimate Ranger’s imposing dimensions and extreme styling is supported by a unique Ford Performance chassis optimised for high-speed off-road driving and go-anywhere capability.

One look at the Ranger Raptor, and you know this off-road high-performance pickup means business. Its aggressive grille with the big bold Ford block lettering screams Raptor DNA – the real thing, with genuine Ford Performance design and engineering excellence.

Available in Ford Performance Blue, Colorado Red, Absolute Black, Frozen White and Conquer Grey colours with contrasting Dyno Grey accents, the new Ranger Raptor’s aggressive design is driven by performance and functionality.

The front fenders are made from durable composite materials for exciting off-road adventures, while the bumper includes LED fog lamps with air-curtain ducts, which reduce air resistance. The flared shape of the fenders have been designed to accommodate the long-travel suspension and BF Goodrich all-terrain tyres that were specifically developed for the vehicle.

Inside it is unmistakably Ford Performance. The sports seats are uniquely designed and trimmed in Technical Suede for maximum grip, providing optimum support during high-performance off-road driving, while also providing exceptional comfort when cruising in town.

Other sporting details include blue stitching and leather accents, as well as the aggressively-styled instrument cluster with distinctive red needles for the dials that emphasise the race-bred credentials.

The steering wheel features perforated leather hand grip sections, paired with Raptor DNA lightweight magnesium paddle shifters for crisp gear changes. The Raptor logo is debossed into the spoke bezel of the steering wheel and a motorsport-inspired “on-centre” marker – a red stripe at the top-middle of the steering wheel – gives you confidence to know where the wheels are pointing.

Powerful Bi-Turbo performance

The performance bakkie is equipped with the new 2.0-litre Bi-Turbo diesel engine that delivers a maximum of 157kW of power and 500Nm of torque. This innovative power plant offers both high performance and efficiency, thanks to its combination of a small high-pressure turbo and a large low-pressure turbo that work to provide optimal performance throughout the engine speed range.

The Ranger Raptor is equipped with Ford’s all-new 10-speed automatic transmission, which is created with high-strength steel, aluminium alloys and composites to optimize durability and weight.

Having 10 gears means a wider ratio-span, resulting in better acceleration and responsiveness in all driving conditions, matched to improved fuel efficiency. With more room to optimise gear spacing, gear progression can be customised for more accurate and quicker shifts. It also features real-time adaptive shift-scheduling algorithms engineered to optimise gear selection.

Unique to the Ranger Raptor are steering wheel-mounted magnesium paddle shifters that give the driver ultimate control over the gear change points and driving dynamics.

To further underline its impressive off-road credentials, the Terrain Management System (TMS) includes an exciting Baja mode, inspired by Mexico’s famous Baja Desert Rally, which enables ultra-responsive, high-speed off-road performance. In this mode, vehicle systems like Traction Control are pared back to allow spirited off-road driving without intervention from the vehicle’s on-board systems. Gear selection is optimised for maximum performance, and the mapping will hold gears longer and downshift more aggressively.

To tackle unforgiving terrain, Ranger Raptor’s specially developed BF Goodrich 285/70 R17 all-terrain tyres offer a tough sidewall to take on the most formidable environments with confidence, and an aggressive off-road tread pattern that provides outstanding grip in wet, mud, sand and snow conditions.

The Ranger Raptor is loaded with safety and convenience features that make it suitable for both on and off-road driving. A host of driver-assist technologies are available at the push of a button, incorporating unique design features tailored for the Ranger Raptor.

For instance, Ford’s standard SYNCR3 with Navigation system offers a unique “breadcrumb” feature to leave a trail in uncharted areas – perfect for the serious off-roader. And safety being a number one priority, it is equipped with Ford Stability Control (FSC), incorporating Roll Stability Control

(RSC) that was specifically developed for Ford’s sport utility vehicle (SUV) range, and has been adapted for this exciting new Ford Performance model. It utilises clever sensors to anticipate and minimise oversteer, understeer and rollover incidents.

“The standout experience of the Ranger Raptor, hands down, is how far you can push it off-road versus any other available standard production road vehicle, and still provide amazing ride comfort on-road,” says Damien Ross, chief programme engineer. 

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