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The F150 Raptor rules

Updated: Jul 6, 2021

by Tony C. Lesesne

ABOUT THE RAPTOR

This truck is meant for hot, nasty speed on unforgiving terrain. Driving the Ford F-150 Raptor changes your entire attitude. You feel like you own everything on the road. The big all-terrain tires, a bold bully stance, and a body that has more width on that F-150 body.

THE BULLY FACTOR

I can’t help but mention this subtle but important little nugget of information I discovered while testing the Raptor. This big, handsomely obnoxious, mechanical monster of a truck has a way of getting people out of your lane on the highway when you pull up behind them. Riding high has a way of creating a sense of power and dominance. Hey, I’m just saying. Blame the Raptor.


THE DRIVE & PERFORMANCE

The Raptor’s long-travel suspension helps deliver a great off-road experience and day to day driver comfort. The multi-mode four wheel-drive works with a 450-hp twin-turbo V-6 and 10-speed automatic transmission that hits 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds making 510 lb.-ft. Torque.

I drove it up and down I-95, I-75, US-1 and A-1-A and just ruled the streets. The power that is delivered from the moment of acceleration (MOA) is immediate and thrilling. You’re in this big badass truck taking off like a rocket but still feeling confident in its stability, control and responsiveness. That’s worth the ride. I never had a chance to take it off-road, which in my case would be out in the Everglades if anywhere at all. But the city streets gave me enough of a challenge. In particular, I had to focus on my parking skills in this truck because city parking can be tight and testy.


It has a 6000-8000 pound towing capacity and hauls 1200 pounds in its bed. EPA gas mileage ratings is 15 mpg city; 18 mpg highway.    I wasn’t thrilled about the $90 bucks it takes to refuel. The Raptor handles the surprises and curves of city streets better than some sports cars. Paddle shifters make it all the more fun and absolutely more dazzling on the streets. With a high strength military-grade aluminum alloy, its 500 pounds light, more agile and quicker. It’s also equipped with Fox Live Valve electronically controlled shock absorbers, the first for a production off-roader.  Four wheel drive torque on demand- combines the best attributes of clutch driven all-wheel drive with durable mech-locking four wheel drive. 


EXTERIOR DESIGN

You know what it is when you see it coming – the bold – broad and grill with the FORD brand smack in the middle. The integrated headlamps that wrap around the sides, the protective underbody plate. It has all the cool elements of the F-150, but more aggressive. It’s a statement in every way, big, bold, strong lines, athletic and aggressive in its appearance and demeanor.


INTERIOR

The Raptor’s long-travel suspension helps deliver a great off-road experience and day to day driver comfort. The multi-mode four wheel-drive works with a 450-hp twin-turbo V-6 and 10-speed automatic transmission that hits 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds making 510 lb.-ft. Torque. It has a 6000-8000 pound towing capacity and hauls 1200 pounds in its bed. EPA gas mileage ratings is 15 mpg city; 18 mpg highway. I wasn’t thrilled about the $90 bucks it takes to refuel. The Raptor handles the surprises and curves of city streets better than some sports cars. Paddle shifters make it all the more fun and absolutely more dazzling on the streets.

Inside there are attractive sport racing leather seats with color options and badging. The dash is easy to operate. Air Vents cool on either side of the Led screen and on board computer, entertainment center, climate controls storage and the gear stick and the traditional cup holder space

  1. A sporty leather steering wheel

  2. Drive options based on terrain and towing needs

  3. control switches above and down here there are Hill assist, trailer and backup assist mode

In the front and in the back, there’s lots of space. The Raptor’s 5.5-foot cargo bed is as useful as those of its short-bed rivals, and its interior cubby storage is the best among rivals. The Raptor’s touchscreen infotainment system—called Sync 3—is robust and easy to use. While it supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability, we’ve tested rivals with speedier response times.

MY VERDICT

To be honest, this is too much truck for most people, but those with swag to spare should take a close look.   It’s unlike just about anything on the market delivering a combination of serious, intense off-roading capability with pure, exhilarating fun.

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