Speed in the desertEdward Green ▼ | Monday September 6, 2010 6:01PM ET
Ford F-150 SVT Raptor is 15 centimetres wider than F-150, the model it is based on, to make room for the additional suspension components that give Raptor excellent off-road abilities. The new technology called FOX Racing Shox provides sensitive damping and a smooth ride on the road. Raptor also has special 35-inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain tires, a large fuel tank and increased towing capability, 4,000 kilograms, to make it a great choice for the desert environment.
Raptor's exterior also receives some new touches for 2011, in the form of an additional paint color Ingot Silver Metallic available with the standard black interior, or the optional Molten Orange Interior Accent Package.
Key to helping drivers take advantage of all the capability offered by the F-150 SVT Raptor is a standard 4.2-inch LCD screen which is integrated in the centre of the new instruments which have a black face, red pointers and ice blue lighting during the daylight. A truck application screen provides vehicle status information for important off-road parameters such as off-road mode, Hill Descent Control, electronic locking differential settings and advance stability control.
If you want more control of transmission gear selection, SelectShift Automatic transmission functionality is there for you - it shuts down computer control and you have total control over gear selection and driving pleasure.
Ford's expert paid a special attention to driving in rough environment. Raptor as tested on a unique desert loop designed to prove out the durability that high-performance that every off-road enthusiast demands. Engine cooling is key on Raptor. When the truck is in a desert, hot weather and deep sand put a heavy load on the vehicle, and the engine has to deliver maximum power to keep the truck going. For every car that pass desert test you can be sure that it will serve you well on any terrain.
While the main attention has been paid to exterior, interior is not forgotten. The Raptor Luxury Package bring additional features such as Remote Start System, 110 V power source in the centre console, telescoping steering wheel, and head restraint for second-row middle seat. Add to that top quality materials that surround the driver and passenger and you'll get a luxury, but very robust off-road car. It will be very interesting to see how the competition will answer to this great car. ■