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An eagle-eyed CarAdvice reader has snapped a Ford F-150 Raptor SVT in Victoria.

Khoder Ahmed captured the hulking left-hand-drive truck, which is an engineering evaluation vehicle belonging to Ford Australia.

Brand communications manager Neil McDonald said the 2011 F-150 Raptor was shipped to Australia more than two years ago to join Ford’s local engineering fleet.

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McDonald was, however, quick to point out Ford has no plans to introduce the Raptor or any vehicles from the F-Series family to our market.

As one of Ford Motor Company’s global engineering hubs, Ford Australia imports a number of vehicles built for other markets around the world for testing, assessment and validation work.

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The 2011 Ford F-150 Raptor was produced at Ford’s Dearborn Truck Plant in Michigan, US. At 5603mm long, 2192mm wide and 1994mm tall, the 2.7-tonne pick-up towers over the Falcon XR6 and previous-generation Ranger it is parked alongside.

Under the Raptor’s head-high bonnet sits a 6.2-litre V8 that produces 306kW of power at 5500rpm and 588Nm of torque at 4500rpm, and gives the four-wheel-drive F-150 a 2720kg towing capacity.

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The current 12th-generation Ford F-Series is now five years old, having launched in 2008. The all-new 13th-generation F-Series is due in 2015, drawing inspiration from the Ford Atlas concept that debuted at January’s Detroit auto show.

While the new model will be influenced by the brand’s One Ford philosophy and offer a range of downsized, fuel-efficient EcoBoost engines, McDonald said Ford Australia views the Ranger as its flagship ute for the foreseeable future and has no intention to offer the next-generation F-Series.

Ford Australia last sold the F-250 and F-350 utes in Australia in 2006.

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  • BuTcH

    i spotted a figo in melbourne a couple of months back that had lots of testing equipment in it

  • LeStori

    Looking at it I think it is spelt wrong. It should be Craptor…

    • Robert Ryan

      Considering how successful this vehicle is off road you maybe right. It was designed as an Off Road “Lifestyle Vehicle” more than anything else. Not really good off road or on road, That is why it has a low profile today.

      • Buckles

        Actually no. If you look at any reviews online- most of them say its fine around town or on the highway. It might not fit into tiny metropolitan car parks but it’ll do pretty much anything else

        • Robert Ryan

          Yes it is slightly bigger but taller than the Ranger.Most of the reviews are US based, different standard of what is OK. It is reasonable Off Road, but not on tiny tracks. About as good as a Jeep Commander.

          • Buckles

            What? Reasonable offroad? I’ve seen the Raptor jump and take mounds that would destroy a Commander. It’s far more than reasonable off road. Couple those massive tyres, and suspension with the 6.2L V8- it’s very capable. I’m not talking about written reviews- I’m talking about video demonstrations.

          • Robert Ryan

            Video demonstrations are not what I would base a reasonable Off Roader on, The written reviews are US based and aimed at “Lifestyle” owners not someone. trying to cross the Simpson Desert. Reliability , Payload (the Raptor has a tiny one) ability to get down small tracks, not just jump humps and a Diesel engine is required..

          • Buckles

            I’m talking about pure off roading ability and intended purpose vs. actual ability. A Jeep commander is no where near as ruggedised as a F150 Raptor. Bash plates? Heavy duty suspension components and Fox struts? Off-road tyres standard? A commander will most likely spend it’s life in the City or on a gravel track, at best. I know where an F150 Raptor is most likely to go. Sure- it doesn’t have the range of a Landcruiser 100 series with an extended range tank etc but in terms of a day out offroading, this will do it. You would have to spend more on a Jeep commander to get it ready for a long trip or even a day of serious off-roading than you would an SVT Raptor. I’m surprised you picked the commander from the Jeep stable… I’d be more inclined to go a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon with some modifications. In terms of ability straight off the production line, the Raptor is a superior off roader compared to the Commander. I

          • Robert Ryan

            Right it does not have the range or payload of a Landcruiser, reliability is pretty suspect. A Jeep Commander will do a fair bit of of Off Road work in Australia, In the US I gather where you come from ,no it will not..
            “but in terms of a day out offroading” That pretty well sums up a Raptor is it a “Lifestyle Vehicle” for some light Off Roading. The Jeep Wrangler is a glorified “Rock Crawler”, not good on road, terrible range and no payload.

          • $29896495

            Wouldn’t be a small track after that thing has been down it.

  • K-Bar

    What would the EcoBoost version be like?
    Two of those Twin turbo 4cyl Fiesta engines sharing a crank?

    • Phil

      it’s the 3.5L V6 as used in the Taurus SHO but tuned for higher torque, almost as much as the 6.2 V8 but its torque peak is 2000rpm lower. It’ll haul the Supercrew 4×4 to a low 15 quarter mile, pretty good for a 2.6 tonne 4WD.

  • gibbut

    theres 2 svt raptors living here in townsville already, also a toyota tundra.

  • Cars

    There is one at Brisbane Private Hospital. Massive things!

    • Smart US

      i bet its taking more spots than allowed

  • Stretch2848

    As mentioned in the article that thing has been sitting in the Ford carpark for a while… I’ve walked past it a few times in the last 12 months. I don’t dare park next to it though!

  • Sydney_F6

    Another American car that would be over-priced if introduced to Australia, my brothers boss in the US bought a Raptor for the price of our XR8′s….kind of glad its not coming here so we don’t get ripped off.

  • MisterZed

    Actually the current F-Series dates back to 2003. 2009 was just a facelift.

  • pixxxels

    Haha, you don’t need to be all that “eagle-eyed” to spot a bright orange Raptor in suburban Melbourne. Nice spot though, wish Ford sold it here.

    • delcotexas

      they don’t have the forditude

    • LC

      That color is meant to stand out.

      That said, while I’ve seen my share of F-100s, the old F-150s they made in Broadmeadows, F-250s from 2001-2006, one new F-250, a handful of Silverados and one Ram 3500, I’ve never, ever, ever seen a new F-150 or a Raptor in the flesh, err, steel.

      Guess there isn’t much of a niche for them here. Unlike the massive F-250s, the F-150 is about 10% bigger than the current Ranger and therefore buyers would be better off with that, at least financially, considering the load and towing capacities are comparable, and ute imports from the states usually ask Mercedes-Benz-prices. When it comes to things like the F250, it’s a different story, as it fits in a different market segment and appeals to different buyers who will use it for wholly different purposes.

      While the F-150 and similar offerings from Toyota, Nissan, GM and Dodge are intended to be used as utes, the larger F250 and it’s key rivals aren’t designed to be used as large utes as much as they are meant to be used as small semi-trailers. For every person who buys one over there for the sake of image, there are two who will buy it to tow 5th-wheel trailers and/or carry loads usually reserved for N or F series Isuzu trucks.

  • Phil

    Can’t be doing much testing, Finke desert race was on a couple of weeks ago and it wasn’t entered :(

    • Robert Ryan

      Never will be, slow as molasses off road.

  • ABCDEFG

    Do we have an eagle-eared person too to tell us what it sounds like.

  • Zandit75

    Seen a Silver Raptor down here in Tassie a couple of months back. There is obviously a couple of overly rich people getting them converted over to RHD. Must cost them a fortune!
    Little bit disappointed with the towing capacity, only 2720kgs??!! The Ranger does 3500kgs for something so much smaller!

    • OOOO

      I think the Raptor would do it a whole lot easier and safer, with its extra grunt and mass though.

      • Robert Ryan

        Ah No. Not really all that capable.

        • LC

          Actually, yes it is. The F-150 can tow anywhere between 3 and 5.2 tonnes on a conventional trailer, depending on driveline configuration and vehicle package. The Raptor can tow 3.6 tonnes.

          And sure, the F-150 is bigger, obviously, but only by 10% (0.5 meters).

          • Robert Ryan

            They are fantasy figures. A Local importer is quoting 3000kg and 3,300kg. The US figures are pretty well made for PR purposes not actual figures. None of the US Producers have signed up to use their own J2807 standard and that is pretty subjective at best.. Towing 5.2 tonnes snails would be beating it.

          • LC

            And you don’t think those standards wouldn’t apply to locally available models? Put two big guys and a tray full of gear in a
            Ranger and see if it can still pull 3500kgs without going over the GCM.

            Also, you’ll find they have to quote that because if they tow more than 4 tonnes you’ll require a light truck license to drive them in a few states (I know that in VIC it’s 4.5 tonnes).

            They did the same thing with the F-250 when they were importing it. The figures they gave were only slightly better than the then-current 78 Series Cruiser. The F-350, on the other hand, could tow much closer to the Canada figures, because that required a light truck license to begin with. And if you look at the sales figures after their 5 year run was up, the car-license F250 outsold the F350 10:1. So it paid off.

            In the States and Canada the regulations are looser, so someone with a equivalent of a car license can tow more, and not every jurisdiction requires a special permit for the F-250. They still require an equivalent to a light truck license (they call it a class 3/class 4 permit) to operate the biggest ones.

            I’m not saying the Ranger isn’t any good (it is), but the F-150 is good too. My only qualms with it is it goes against their 1 Ford policy. It’s a good enough reason to kill the Falcon (rather than making it the new Taurus), but not a good enough reason to export the F-150?

          • Robert Ryan

            That is the problem. The GCM on the F150 is exaggerated. The F250 yes, was overrated.F350 can tow a lot more but vastly less than the claimed tow ratings in the US. I think the F150 is a lot less practical than the Ranger and has roughly about as much capability . Where the F150 fails is general Off Road ability , limited payload and fuel economy i .e does not have a diesel. I can see where the Global Ranger would cannibalize F150 sales. F150′s are basically used as “SUV’s with beds” in North America.

          • LC

            No, it’s not. The F Series WILL tow as much as they claim. Issue is legally you need a special license to do so here. Hence the claims are toned down, and Ford built the F-250 with a smaller engine and gearbox. If they didn’t, they’d have never sold 12,000 of them before it was pulled because of emissions, because they’d alienate most of the potential buyers.

            I agree the F-150 needs a diesel, to strike the perfect balance between torque and economy. Ford have plans to introduce a diesel variant before the new one is released in 2015. But the ecoboost ones are actually pretty good with fuel all things considered (12 city 8.5 highway, which is roughly in line with the diesel-powered Triton).

          • Robert Ryan

            No you do not need a special licence for towing It only applies to the GCVM of a vehicle. Over 10,000lbs and you need a basic truck licence. That is why a lot of Motorhomes come in just under 10,000lb. No they did not build the F250 with a smaller engine it had the 7.3 diesel in 2005. The Brazilan 3.9 Cummins was also offered.

          • LC

            They will tow as much as they claim…in the US and Canada.

            Over here, Ford did what had to be done to keep it under the magic number of 4.5t GCM. Meaning offering detuned V8s in addition to the 6 cylinder.

            They’d never has sold as many as they did if it required a basic truck license, so it was a necessary sacifice.

          • Robert Ryan

            Got nothing to do with it. They cannot even closely get to those fantasy figures.Towing 4.5 tonnes has nothing to with GCVM, which is the combined weight of the vehicle and what is being carried or towed. Truck licences refer to the WEIGHT of the vehicle not its towing capacity.

            No”detuned” v8′s were offered. No huge increase in power is going to make the vehicle actually tow more.

          • LC

            And I refer you my above comment: If you load up ANY ute with passengers or cargo you’ll lose towing capacity.

            By those standards, are the figures for the HiLux, Amarok and Bt-50 also overstated? Or what about the Triton? I always thought that 3 tonnes for that was a bit optimistic, with the platform, powertrain and the fact they originally advertised it as capable of towing 2.7 tonnes, then upped that to 3 tonnes during the mid-life update with no mechanical or structural changes.

          • laredo

            Towing capacity refers to the amount of mass the vehicle can tow without damaging the chassis. If you actually read the manual it advises “speed should be limited to no more than 40 km/h and distance no more than 15 km if towing more than 600kg”, so the _effective_ towing capacity is nowhere near the advertised amount.

            This is because the engine power, clutch and suspension can’t really handle tow weights anything like as high as the chassis rails will handle – it’s a car, not a tractor unit, which carries weight more evenly on a turntable and has wet clutches and a gearbox in constant mesh.

          • LC

            You’ve confused me. Are you referring to the other utes I’ve mentioned or the F-150?

            Not sure it’s the F-150, because the US uses imperial measurements for one, and for two, you can tow more than 600kg with a Mazda 6, and you don’t need to slow that far down. I can tow 2.3 tonnes with my Fairlane, and nowhere in the manual have I read that (though you’re pretty stupid if you’re going to be a speed demon when towing that sort of load anyway). If you couldn’t tow much more than 600kgs/1,320 pounds without adverse effects, Ford would cop it for false advertising for one (like what happened when they actually did heavily overstate the fuel consumption of the Ford Fusion Hybrid), and they wouldn’t get to have the no.1 best selling car in the states for over a decade (and for about 3 decades and running as the best selling vehicle in it’s class). The competition would outshine it. Dodge, Chevorlet, Toyota and Nissan would gobble up their sales.

            In any event link or tell me where to find the relevant manual please.

            And if it is for the F-150, then how badly do the local 4 cylinder offerings on smaller platforms perform?

          • LC

            And I do apologize for constantly referring to the 4.5 tonne figure as the towing capacity, when in fact the limit is 9 tonnes before you need an LR license. The 4.5 figure was the GVM, not the GCM or towing capacity. The F250 of 2001-2006 comes in at 9074kg GCM at the high end (it clearly was exempt because it’s not that far over 9 tonnes), and at the lower end, 8220kg. For comparison, the current Ford Ranger comes in at 6000kg GCM on the Wildtrak model.

        • richard

          Go do some research before you shoot your mouth off…

    • marc

      Good wine doesn’t have the most alcohol.

  • Brayden Cresswell

    Looks like a import to me.

  • Henry Toussaint

    I swear I saw that In Lorne about a year ago…

  • MINI_CS

    Its simple I just want one. Problem is land and converted in Australia $140k plus

    • marc

      If Ford & GM/Chevy could sell these things for 50k or less, in Aus, they would be on a winner. The Japs can do right and left drive, no problem, the Yanks should be able too. I’ve wondered why Toyota haven’t sold the Tundra in Aus… judging by the Hilux sales.

      • F1orce

        They’d have to sell the tundra for $100k + to yield a similar margin to Hilux..

      • Robert Ryan

        Absolutely abysmal payload, for starters no diesel. Toyota knows the Tundra will not sell outside NA, In fact the Tacoma which is the a rebadged Hilux Surf totally outsells it in the US, by a huge margin.

  • Ryan

    There are two getting around in Hobart, a blue xtra cap and a black dual cab, both are private.

  • $29896495

    Ford opening new plant in China should be handy once Australian plant is closed.

    • Robert Ryan

      Building small cars to be shipped back to the US.

      • $29896495

        Actually they do that in their new, Mexico plant. (Not New Mexico)

        • Robert Ryan

          No they have built a Chinese plant to produce cars for US consumption

  • Ijustwantone…

    Saw a black one at Bacchus Marsh (near melb) last month. Looked the goods…

  • LC

    This is actually not that uncommon: Foreign car makers using our deserts and rural environments to test HVAC and tolerance under heat, and our rough roads to test the performance of the suspension, the idea being if it can make it here, it can make it pretty much anywhere. The Stuart Highway in the NT was the go-to place for car-makers all over the world to test these things until recently.

    I saw a couple of Chevrolet Express vans being tested parked in the Shell outside of Goulburn when I was there last year to visit family. Same sticker on the back and everything.

  • Booted Ute

    I thought a motoring journalist may know the difference between a XR6 ute & a XR6 sedan… “pick-up towers over the Falcon XR6 Ute and previous-generation Ranger it is parked alongside.”

    • LC

      It’s clearly the new dual cab XR6 ute with a hard tonnau cover. :P

  • F1orce

    Fords numbers regarding towing capacity are indeed overstated..

    • LC

      And your evidence for that is where?

  • Brayden Cresswell

    I’m thinking of taking photos of a mustang and telling car advice that it was being tested by ford see if they take on the story.

  • Woowee

    Funny looking “xr6 ute” next to it, is that optioned with the second row seating, and metal hard cover and spoiler?

  • JamesB

    War in another Middle Eastern country needs to be waged to in order to feed these things.

    • LC

      Then Australia will have to declare war on one too, as the Holden SSV ute isn’t any better.

  • Daniel D

    Ford has a brand communications manager? Who knew.

  • MichaelLock

    If they did sell this here it would be SOOOOOOO expensive only wankers would buy it.

  • Smart US

    you mind pulling off some joke then? id love one from you coz leStori at least tried

  • Buckles

    You mean that’s a joke? This is LeStori posing as Smart US right?

  • Smart US

    why would i – I am one of few using same nick-name for all major car sites to comment… just dont like someone to criticize and yet all the mouth no joke – cheers

  • Buckles

    As opposed to someone making a completely unfounded lame remark (okay, a joke) without backing it up?

  • Smart US

    well – ill back you up if someone calls you a Loser – like Skybreak did… this is friendly environment and any hostility is pointless… so if you think my remark was offensive to you and your believes I am sorry – but I will always stand by an underdog…

  • Buckles

    I don’t see anything offensive in anything you said- “Loser”- sure, uncalled for…that said – some jokes/remarks are better left unsaid.

  • Smart US

    well – i referred to Skybreak calling LeStori a “Loser” – the rest i wrote I guess speaks for itself