Ford Ranger Raptor: Born From a Performance DNA
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, 30 January 2019 – There was only ever going to be one way the Ford Performance team would sign off the first-ever Ranger Raptor. After testing in Australia’s Outback, the new Ford Performance truck would be flown to California to prove itself on the same desert tracks that forged the F-150 Raptor.

Ford takes the DNA of its performance vehicles seriously. The legendary F-150 Raptor’s DNA was inspired by the off-road pre-runner trucks used at Baja and Dakar – high-speed desert racers capable of eating up anything thrown at them.

For Ford’s Global Director of Performance, Hermann Salenbauch, this meant the Ranger Raptor had to pass the same tracks, the same tests and the same benchmarks as its big brother.

“It is the harshest terrain we can find that is similar to race tracks like the Baja 1000 and the Dakar Rally,” said Salenbauch. “It’s the best area in the world to test a truck like this. If it can survive there, it can survive anywhere.”

Ranger Raptor nailed it. With Ford’s Performance DNA infused into the Built Ford Tough Ranger line, the vehicle exceeded expectations. The way the world experiences and defines midsize pickup trucks is about to change forever. The ultimate Ranger is setting a benchmark as the only factory-built performance truck for Asia Pacific.

Ford Performance Chief Functional Engineer, Ed Krenz, was charged with ensuring F-150 Raptor’s high-speed off-road DNA was fully transferred to the Ranger.

“Every aspect of this vehicle has performance at its heart and you can see it. The wide track, the lifted height, the flared fenders, the FOX shocks, the big wheels and tires. Its aggressive looks are a product of the job it has been asked to do. It’s unmistakably a Raptor and the Ford Performance DNA is there in every way.”

If anyone has the right to make that call it is Krenz. The DNA of the Shelby, the Focus RS and the F-150 Raptor are all under his watch.

“The Ranger Raptor is the most production-ready off-road, high-speed vehicle in the world. It's going to blow people's minds.”

Ranger Raptor Chief Programme Engineer, Damien Ross, knew his team had nailed the super truck’s performance DNA during early development and testing in Australia’s off-road racing heart - the remote and torturous Finke Desert track.

“One of our early goals was to make sure that we set up the vehicle architecture so that it could handle speeds off-road,” Ross said. “We took a series of woops at speed in our first prototype and it was just astounding. We knew we were onto something special.”

It’s clear that the Ranger Raptor sets new benchmarks in off-road speed and capability. Fox Racing Shox shock absorbers all around allow travel at speeds which would normally shake a car and driver to pieces.

Innovative all-new Watt’s linkage rear suspension with coilover rear springs ensures rear axle lateral stability off-road while also improving ride and handling. Increased ride height, wider track and improved approach and departure angles ensure capability and stability at extremes of both terrain and speed.

The new powertrain combination of a 2.0-liter Bi-Turbo diesel engine and 10-speed transmission is true to Ford’s commitment to getting big power and economy from smaller boosted engines, and delivers smooth torque and power through independent turbos and closer gear ratios over a wider span.

Inside, Ranger Raptor offers a tailored Ford Performance DNA interior with a high level of craftsmanship. The seats are specially designed for off-road high-speed performance support, allowing the driver to push the vehicle’s limits, while also providing superior on-road comfort.

Drivers will notice detailed cockpit differences, including the blue stitching and leather accents. Ford Performance DNA has played a significant role in the purposeful styling, including the ‘On-centre’ marker – a red stripe at the top-middle of the wheel to let you know where the wheels are pointing when airborne or driving off-road at high speed. New lightweight magnesium paddle shifters are easily accessible for crisp and precise shifting.

For Damien Ross, being part of the global team bringing the Raptor experience to performance off-road enthusiasts outside of North America is especially rewarding.

“Presenting the Raptor essence to a whole new world is incredibly satisfying,” Ross said. “The Ford Ranger truck has a huge fan base all across the Asia Pacific and the Ranger Raptor pushes the edge in terms of performance, capability and just sheer pleasure to drive. We can’t wait for people to experience it.”

For many performance off-road enthusiasts around the world, the idea of infusing the F-150 Raptor essence into the lighter, nimbler Ranger was the stuff dreams were made of. That Ford has listened and responded with a vehicle that carves new space and redefines the market should come as no surprise. After all, it is in their DNA.

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