The Oxford English Dictionary defines a Raptor as a bird of prey that kills other creatures for food. The next Gen 2023 Ford Raptor therefore truly lives up to its name devouring the competition. In a world of playing it safe, the Raptor is unapologetic in your face 100% bakkie. It’s clear the moment that you lay your eyes on this beast that this was designed and built by bakkie enthusiasts for their fellow enthusiasts. A bakkie built to suit South African conditions finally the “man’s” bakkie we have been waiting for all these years has arrived.
Whether it be for on-road or off-road use the Raptor has all the bases covered suiting the client who needs a rugged reliable vehicle for business or the weekend off-road warrior this beast can handle anything thrown at it with a smile. Could we finally put to rest the age-old debate heard around countless braais, which is South Africa’s best bakkie?
I think so, the Raptor is in a class of its own with a host of new features that aren’t just nice to have they take this already amazing bakkie up a few notches combine them together and the whole is definitely more than the sum of its parts. These new features have been added to achieve one thing pure driving pleasure in any condition without sacrificing performance.
The exterior has had an upgrade with new headlamps the same ones that are found on the iconic F-150 pick up as well as the grill with the Ford block letters where the front self-cleansing camera is located. The all-new cast aluminium side steps complete the Raptors look. The new Raptor is a scaled-down version of the F-150 designed for the rugged South African terrain. The 272mm ground clearance will make minced meat of Moegatle a claim that I’m not making lightly…
The new 3.0L V6 twin-turbo lightweight aluminium engine was designed specifically for the Raptor utilising the same lightweight performance materials found in Ford’s Nascar racing engines. This lighter engine produces 292 kW as well as an impressive 583 nm of torque, combined with the performance-tuned 10-speed automatic gearbox has me salivating at the thought of the endless hours of fun/kak this will lead to. This is the most powerful Ranger engine ever !!!!!
With all this extra power Ford has partnered with Fox (Racing) and developed the Fox 2.5” Live Valve Shock absorbers. These state-of-the-art internal bypass dampers are able to adjust up to 500 times in a second, thus being able to react immediately to changes in terrain perfect for off-road enthusiasts. Ford has also upgraded their braking systems with the front and rear vented discs and a new ABS and stability control system.
The inclusion of the new front Locking Diff turns any rocky terrain into nothing more than a “ bump in the road” thus truly turning the world into your playground. To handle all these new upgrades the Raptor has 7 new drive modes specifically designed either for on or off-road use. The 3 on road settings are normal, sprint or slippery.
The awesome 4 off-road settings are Mud, Sand, Baja and Rock Crawl. The new steering mode includes 3 amazing settings normal, off-road and sport which included with damper settings of the same configurations as steering mode the drive on the Raptor is heavenly. The new selectable exhaust mode is my personal favourite, this allows the driver to tune in 4 new sonic exhaust possibilities.
This turns the Raptor from a silent predator in quiet mode to a soul-screaming beast in Baja mode this mode is recommended for off-roading as if used in your neighbourhood, Karen will definitely be calling your local cop shop. The other two modes include normal and sport and had us entertained for hours with all these options.
My Mode ties all these new features together allowing personalised settings for multiple drivers and being able to swap between each of these with a touch of a button. One setting for you and a totally different setting for dad.
This is your Raptor your way! Ford has also upgraded the interior with an all-new 12 “ vertical display console which is perfect for the multiple new camera views including a 360-degree bird’s eye view, top-down view and the rear hitch view all included with apple and android connectivity. An all-new Bang & Olufsen sound system is included although you might not fully utilise this with the exhaust mode function satisfying your sonic needs.
With all the extra power in the new Raptor Ford has developed new front and rear performance seats inspired by the Raptor’s cousin the F-22 Raptor Fighter Jet. Is this Raptor for everyone? Most probably not this isn’t a small bakkie and parking could be a problem for those who are not used to a vehicle of this size. With a base price of R 1,150.000.00 this truly is for the off-road enthusiasts, although this bakkie has it all its at home whether you step out onto the red carpet or at the top of Sani Pass to take a picture of the amazing view, this is a bakkie for all occasions.
The new Raptor will be available towards the end of 2022 with pre-orders already in the hundreds and the only question left to ask is whether this new Raptor going to become part of your family? I know it will definitely be part of mine might have to get rid of the wife to make space :). Some sacrifices are worth it, let’s just say this beast of a bakkie left me enraptured!!!
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