CARS.COM — Earlier this month in Thailand, Ford revealed the new Ranger Raptor, an off-road-focused version of its globally available Ranger mid-size pickup truck. The Ranger has been absent from our shores for some time but is returning for the 2019 model year. Will the Ranger Raptor be joining its humbler siblings? Ford hasn’t confirmed or denied anything yet – but we can dream, can’t we?
First and foremost, we just want one. The F-150 Raptor is some of the most fun you can have on four wheels straight from the factory. Assuming our wish is granted, what do we want to see on a Ranger Raptor in the U.S.?
The Ranger Raptor revealed for the global market is powered by a new bi-turbo 2.0-liter diesel engine. The Ranger for the U.S. will initially be available with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost gasoline engine. Both are mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Our editors would like to see additional options available for the Raptor here: maybe the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6 from the F-150? Or, if it’s going to stay diesel-only, why not the turbo-diesel 3.2-liter five-cylinder from the Ford Transit in a sportier tune? The Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 is available with a diesel engine, so that wouldn’t be unprecedented.
Lose Some Weight
The F-150 Raptor is certainly capable and fun. But there’s a problem: All the things that make it so capable and fun add weight, making its cargo capacity significantly lower. Detroit Bureau Chief Aaron Bragman is worried the Ranger Raptor might suffer the same fate.
“Pull some stuff out, or how about we give people an option of the smaller cab as well as the four-door?” Bragman pleaded.
Speaking of giving shoppers options, what about trim or pricing levels for the Raptor? PickupTrucks.com Editor Mark Williams would “really like them to offer at least two levels of trim dressing: one for price-conscious buyers, the other for mid-size buyers that don’t care too much about price.”
He also suggests adding bed options for storing off-road recovery gear, a package focused on taking the Ranger Raptor to remote locales, or even a “Rescue Raptor” package for saving those who end up in off-road situations where they shouldn’t be, intentionally or not.
Not just focused on practicality, Williams recommends giving the Ranger Raptor a programmable exhaust system like the Mustang. Quiet for everyday driving and extra loud for bombing through the desert, with in-between settings, as well.
Those are just some of the things we’d like to see in a Ranger Raptor for the U.S., but if it comes here and offers similar capabilities as its F-150 Raptor big brother, we’ll be hard-pressed to complain even if it has none of the above.
Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.