Although the hot pick-up truck stays true to the current ute's basic concept (high performance matched with get-out-of-the-way looks), the way it achieves the former goal is radically different.
At the end of the previous generation's life, the F-150 SVT Raptor featured a naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8 with 306kW of power and 588Nm of torque. Power was sent to all four wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission and a Torsen limited-slip differential at the front.
The new model is instead powered by a 3.5-litre turbocharged V6. Ford claims the Raptor's version of the engine has more power and torque than the old V8, but has yet to give precise numbers. The most powerful version of the 3.5-litre turbo V6 currently available in the new F-150 range develops 272kW and 569Nm.
Tied to the high-performance V6 is a 10-speed automatic transmission and an on-demand four-wheel-drive system. Six drive modes will be available: Normal; Street, for increased on-road performance; Weather, for rain, snow and ice conditions; Mud and Sand; Baja, for high-speed work in desert environs; and Rock, for clambering over rough terrain.
The new F-150 Raptor rides on adaptive Fox Racing Shox and 17-inch alloy wheels clad in gnarly off-road rubber.
From the outside, the F-150 Raptor is easily distinguished from its lesser brethren thanks to its 15.25cm wider body, rugged off-road wheel arch extensions and chunky tyres. The Raptor's body is made primarily from military-grade aluminium and is said to save around 225kg.
Underneath, the F-150 Raptor features a specially built high strength steel frame.