Amping up the excitement on its most popular off-road truck product, Ford announced today at the 2017 State Fair of Texas its new 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor will indeed blow your mind with 510 lb-ft of torque and 450 HP out of its high-output EcoBoost engine. Yes, you read those numbers correctly.
The iconic off-road truck will also come in at a base price of less than $50,000 with official pricing yet to be announced.
It will also feature the same aluminum body found in the stock F-150 and it will also weigh less like the half-ton. This weight loss combined with a 10-speed (TEN!) automatic transmission means the new Raptor will not only be faster, it will see a 21 percent improvement in fuel economy. This transmission, a first from Ford to not use cast-iron components, uses new materials to drop weight as well. Ford says the EPA rating for the 2017 model will be 15/18/16 city/highway/combined – although I’m pretty sure hardcore off-roaders may not see those numbers!
“Raptor was designed to be a no-compromise, off-road performance machine,” said Matt Tranter, Ford Performance engineering supervisor. “That is why we made the switch from the cast-iron V8 to the aluminum block, high-output GTDI V6 EcoBoost engine that our team tuned to add 39 horsepower and 76 lb.-ft. of torque for today’s Raptor.”
Also adding to its off-road pedigree, Ford is giving it a new transfer case and along with the new transmission, the truck will deliver additional power-to-weight benefits to optimize the power bands and shift points as well as delivering more low-RPM torque for that off-the-line wow factor.
“The torque-on-demand transfer case and six-mode Terrain Management System is unique to Raptor in the Ford family of vehicles,” Tranter said. “It gives you the benefit of a clutched all-wheel-drive system for easy around-town maneuverability in bad weather. Then, there’s Baja Mode, which automatically engages a mechanically locked 4X4 high, and optimizes throttle response, shifting and boost control to provide improved off-road capability. That’s definitely drawing a line in the sand.”
Speaking of sand, the new 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor will come with six different drive modes: normal, sport, weather, mud/sand, rock/crawl and Baja mode. Plus, a high-speed, one-way clutch allows for non-sequential shifting (skipping gears).
While the use of the EcoBoost engine has Raptor lovers pretty concerned, Ford says it is a more than adequate successor to the 6.2L V8 in the current generation. They point to the engine’s performance at various off-road events as well as the performance upgrades of increased boost calibrations, cast stainless steel manifolds and full dual exhaust, oil-cooled pistons and more aggressive engine control calibrations as reasons why it is better.
“Looking at the torque curve of the Raptor’s EcoBoost engine, you see the twin turbos spool quicker for faster time to torque – it hammers quick and keeps delivering torque for a more brawny feel than its V8 predecessor,” said Al Cockerill, Raptor’s powertrain development engineer.
Lastly, Ford is giving the truck Auto Start-Stop and an integrated electric pump to improve fuel economy.
The new truck is expected to be out soon.