Ford’s mid-size Ranger is a little more exciting outside the US. There’s the Ranger Raptor, an off-road-capable truck that’s been seen in the hands of the fuzz. But one reason we don’t get it is its engine. The 2.0-liter turbodiesel is down on power, even compared to the sole US engine, a 2.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. And while Texas tuner PaxPower can turn a US Ranger into a Raptor, it doesn’t boost the Ranger’s engine. But that may change for the next-gen truck. There’re rumors of a Ford Ranger Raptor running around with a V8.
The V8 Ford Ranger Raptor rumors and details
Motor1 reported on the rumors first published by Australian automotive magazine Wheels. Allegedly, Ford’s Australian division has been considering replacing the Ranger Raptor’s turbodiesel for the 5.0-liter V8 found in the Mustang GT. The V8 makes 460 hp and 420 lb-ft, a big jump from the diesel’s 213 hp and 369 lb-ft.
The engineering work apparently isn’t being done by Ford, though. Some external engineering company—as yet unnamed—will perform an engine transplant on the Ranger Raptors as they leave their Thai factory, reported Autoblog. Most likely, this is due to the predicted low sales figures of a V8 Ranger Raptor. The truck will supposedly retain the stock 4WD system. Since the Ford Mustang also uses a 10-speed automatic like the Ranger, that will also most likely remain the same, although it might be reprogrammed.
At the moment, it appears that the V8 Ford Ranger Raptor will remain an Aussie-only truck. But that doesn’t mean such a pickup couldn’t find its way to the US.
How likely is a US V8 Ford Ranger Raptor?
The current Ranger Raptor couldn’t make it to the US because of the current Ranger’s product-cycle. The truck is due for a refresh, which, along with an engine never adapted for US emissions standards, meant the Raptor was a no-go here.
But the next-gen Ranger is a different story. Not only could a Raptor version come to the US then—and, in fact, Road & Track predicts it might—a V8 version isn’t an impossibility. The Mustang’s V8 is already certified by the EPA. And, considering Ford is even entertaining a V8 Ranger Raptor, that means fitting the V8 in the Ranger’s engine bay is at least possible. It doesn’t hurt that the Mustang has the same 10-speed as the Ranger.
That being said, Ford doesn’t even offer its F-150 Raptor with a V8 anymore. The only way to get one is to contact PaxPower. There is the V8-equipped Shelby Super Snake F-150, but it’s not a Raptor. But, Motor1 reported that Ford has hinted at a future V8 F-150 Raptor to compete with the Ram Rebel TRX’s Hellcat engine.
In the meantime
At the moment, the most powerful Ford Ranger is Hennessey’s Ranger VelociRaptor. It still has the 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, but Hennessey boosts it to 360 hp. It’s significantly quicker than stock, but it’s still less powerful than the 5.0-liter V8.
As of this writing, Ford has not commented on the reports from Wheels, Motor1, or Autoblog. But if the automaker hears there’s a strong enough demand, it could decide to offer the engine option here.
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