The Ford F-150 SVT Raptor is the only fully factory produced off road capable half ton pickup truck in the market place.
With SVT Raptor sales up 20 percent in 2012, breaking last year’s record in the January to May period, Raptor continues to grow its desirability by off road aficionados along with those who want a pickup truck that can be as “off road” as they want and still drive it regularly in their everyday lives.
SVT Raptor was designed from the beginning to offer both the casual and the serious off roader a very capable pickup to run aggressively off road and then comfortably around town in SVT Raptor’s unique style plus its F-150 heritage of toughness, reliability and quality.
We have driven the 2012 SVT Raptor 4X4 several times in this last year around town, on the highway and off road including several runs at the 2011 Texas Truck Rodeo competition held by the Texas Auto Writers Association last October.
You can read our reviews on these events at http://pingroof.com/review/ford-f-150-svt-raptor-wins-at-texas-truck… and http://pingroof.com/review/f-150-raptor-svt-for-2012-offers-innovati….
After driving a 2012 F-150 SVT Raptor SuperCrew 4X4 again these past two weeks, our views on the SVT Raptor have not changed.
In fact, we feel stronger now that Raptor has all you need and want to take yourself, your friends and your family just about anywhere you need to go on or off road, with a tough yet stylish confidence that you and your Raptor SVT are up to any challenge and are going to have fun meeting it.
For 2013, the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor continues all of its stylish value and toughness from 2012 plus a bit more including a new earth toned color called Terrain, high-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps for improved visibility, and the refined SYNC™ with MyFord Touch™ for added connectivity.
SVT Raptor for 2013 also adds industry-exclusive beadlock-capable wheels to help increase grip in low-traction conditions It continues to build on the internal triple-bypass FOX Racing Shox™ dampers, Torsen™ front differential and front-mounted camera technologies to enhance its high-performance off-road capability
The latest Raptor features available industry-first, direct-from-the-factory forged-aluminum conventional wheels that can be upgraded after purchase to extra-capable beadlocks, plus other functional improvements.
“Ford F-150 SVT Raptor’s popularity continues to grow based on its proven reputation,” said Ford SVT Chief Engineer Jamal Hameedi. “It’s the ultimate high-performance off-road pickup, so it’s critical that we continue to push the boundaries of off-road capability. New available beadlock wheels help to improve Raptor’s performance in soft sand and other challenging conditions, enabling our customers to go further.”
Raptor’s newly available forged wheel combines the proven reliability of a conventional wheel with the capability to convert to a true beadlock wheel. Beadlock wheels secure the edges of a tire to the wheel between two surfaces so the tire is unlikely to roll off the rim if it’s aired down to very low pressure, providing extra grip on the trail.
Raptor’s wheels are unique because converting from conventional rim to beadlock only requires that customers unbolt the standard outer decorative ring, dismount the tire from its regular position and then remount the tire in the lock-enabled position with the available beadlock ring kit from Ford Racing.
This marks the first application of a wheel that has both conventional and beadlock-mounting abilities – a solution so innovative that Ford has filed for a patent on the system.
“Raptor’s exclusive beadlock wheels give the customer the best of both on- and off-road worlds,” said Adam Wirth, SVT chassis engineer. “Tire inflation can be dropped to a very low threshold for maximum traction under extreme conditions, yet holds tight – and stays tight – when returning to the road.”
SVT Raptor features Ford’s SYNC™ communications and entertainment system, allowing hands-free voice-activated control of a driver’s mobile device and the truck’s audio system. For 2013, SVT Raptor adds a new 4.2-inch multifunction LCD screen for the MyFord™ driver connect technology.
The SVT Raptor’s driver connectivity can be upgraded to MyFord Touch™ using an 8-inch center stack touch screen with five-way controls mounted on the steering wheel. In addition, this connectivity upgrade features the 4.2-inch productivity screen, mounted in the instrument cluster that is driver-configurable. This LCD screen includes menus for gauge setup, trip computer and fuel economy and towing/off T road applications.
Truck-specific MyFord Touch offers additional button controls and rotating knobs to accommodate a driver’s work gloves.
SVT Raptor can be specified with an available voice-activated Navigation System using the 8-inch screen and SD-card capability for map and points-of-interest storage. A rear view camera is available as well.
SVT Raptor is equipped with standard unique leather and cloth-trimmed seats, with driver’s side power actuation and six-way adjustability. These seats feature Raptor-specific bolsters to keep the driver and first-row passenger firmly in place, regardless of terrain conditions. The SVT Raptor interior features unique center stack and door trim appliqué finish and leather-trimmed steering wheel with thumb pads.
An optional Luxury Package for SVT Raptor can be ordered adding numerous comfort and convenience technologies. In addition, SVT Raptor can be specified with an interior color accent package, featuring contrasting blue against a black environment and real aluminum trim components.
Outside, SVT Raptor is available in Race Red, Blue Flame Metallic, Tuxedo Black Metallic, Ingot Silver Metallic, Oxford White and the new Raptor-exclusive for 2013, desert camouflage-inspired Terrain.
Since launching in 2010, the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor has evolved each year to set the benchmark for low- and high-speed off-road performance that includes aggressive all-terrain tires, industry-exclusive internal triple-bypass FOX Racing Shox™ dampers, skid plates and standard Hill Descent Control™.
In 2011, SVT engineers added a four-door SuperCrew model, joining the two-door SuperCab original.
Last year, Ford began offering a front grille-mounted camera to improve driver visibility when climbing over rocks and other obstacles that might be obscured by the front of the truck. The camera transmits the captured image via the center stack-mounted LCD screen. A washer function helps keep the camera’s field of vision clear in wet and muddy conditions.
For the casual off roader as well as the enthusiast, this front camera system adds to the excitement of off roading as well as the confidence and capability of the driver. It displays a line system like a rear view camera. One set of lines shows you the line of approach of the truck at the moment while the other set of lines shows where the current turn angle of the wheels are going to take you. Great fun picking your rocks, logs and holes to either hit or avoid based on your desire for the off road ride.
The system has safety designed into it in that it only operates when you are in off-road mode, are in 4-wheel low, have enabled the off road truck application to operate the camera and are travelling under 20 mph.
The 2012 model year saw Raptor add a Torsen™ limited-slip differential to the 4WD system enabling the truck to balance traction between both front wheels. If the left front wheel loses traction, the system forces torque to the right front wheel, and vice versa. The system is optimized to help minimize steering kickback when navigating challenging surfaces.
The SVT Raptor is available exclusively with a 6.2-liter V8 engine, producing best-in-class 411 horsepower and 434 lb.-ft. of torque, mated to an electronic six-speed automatic transmission with tow/haul mode and SelectShift Automatic functionality. The 4WD system features electronic shift-on-the-fly capability for the transfer case.
The front axle features the Torsen differential with 4.10 to 1 gearing. The rear axle is also 4.10 to 1, with an electronic-locking differential and tow capacity of 8,000 pounds.
Since I have been asked by many about it, I will make a brief reference to the controversy raised by pickuptrucks.com earlier this year in their “Desert Shootout” face off of the 2012 SVT Raptor (fully factory built) against the Ram Runner Off Roader (Ram 1500 equipped with $20,000 of Mopar aftermarket off road accessories) in which they declared the Ram Runner the winner.
Ram Runner, equipped with the Mopar designed more rugged aftermarket package assortment was more likely to win, in my opinion, given the set up of the course for the event.
I have driven both Ram Runner and Raptor SVT and my response to the expected Ram Runner win is pretty straight forward.
With the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor, after taking the family off roading on Saturday, you would be very comfortable taking them all to church on Sunday in the Raptor. I am not sure that you would see the Ram Runner in the same light.