Ford continues to impress consumers with its high-performance vehicles. This is especially true with their trucks. While the F150 is their signature model, the Ford Raptor is not something to shrug off. With its focus on serious off-road performance, the Raptor’s notable reputation speaks for itself. While you can drive your Raptor on the highway, you can confidently take it out on dirt, mud, sand, or snow too. There are numerous reasons to take your Raptor Off-Road, but the main ones to note relate to its industrial specifications that make it stand out against its competition.
Amazing Trail Control System
One of the most mentionable aspects of the Ford Raptor compared to other trucks is the Trail Control System. This is specifically designed for off-roading. Think of Trail Control as the cruise control for low-speed, rugged terrain. This is because it automatically controls the throttle and braking for each individual wheel. As this goes on, you’ll have full focus on steering and navigation. Additionally, it’s hassle-free. Simply press the Trail Control button on your dashboard, set your speed, and your Raptor maintains that speed. Ride over any terrain and escape any situations where you’re stuck with ease as your engine will automatically set the torque requires to get you out of those situations. The Trail Control feature helps you climb over steep obstacles and come down smoothly.
With its four-wheel drive drivetrain, it’s no surprise you can easily ride over any terrain. The raptor’s 11.5-inches of ground clearance allows it to travel without risking damage to the body. Your underside is safe throughout your entire drive. Interestingly, the Raptor was originally designed as a vehicle for the Baja 1000 off-road race. Therefore, it’s unsurprising that its frame would have a 30-degree approach, 22-degree breakover, and 23-degree departure angles. The clutch-based torque-on-demand system applies torque to the front and rear wheels for easier handling as well.
Like the Trail Control system, you can’t talk about the Ford raptor without mentioning its remarkable suspension system. The high-output, off-road FOX live valve racing Shox are what set the Raptor apart from other trucks. These offer live tube monotube shocks with internal bypass technology to allow for complete control of your vehicle. The shocks are designed to provide continuous variable compression damping to automatically adjust to changing terrains. You might not even tell the difference between on- and off-road, since the shock absorbers adjust in real-time.
Granted, its beadlocked wheels are something that makes the Raptor move well. The optional beadlock “capable” wheels (if equipped) can be modified to secures the tire’s bead to the wheel—that way, it stays in place when they rotate together. With off-road driving, beadlocked tires allow you to lower the tire pressure while keeping them in place. Ultimately, this makes for effortless traction and driving. Not to mention, the TORSEN front-axle allows for even torque distribution across the front left and right axles, allowing four-wheel drive. When TORSEN differentials are implemented, the vehicle’s outer wheel slows down while the inner wheel receives more torque to speed it up. All these adjustments give the wheels better maneuvering and steering.
The high-output 3.5L V6 EcoBoost engine isn’t something to ignore. This gives the truck intense power on the highway and over natural terrain. Uniquely, this engine reaches up to 450 horsepower with 510 pounds of torque. Riders can operate the 10-speed automatic transmission to focus on the amount of power needed for their journey. You won’t need to shift gears when climbing on declining hills or across trails. It’s rumored the next generation of Raptors may have a seriously powerful V8 engine like the Shelby GT500 for better performance. Still, this is just a rumor, and the current V6 engine allows for optimal driving in off-road trails already.
High Towing and Payload
With its towing and payload capabilities, you’ll easily tow a trailer to a campsite before hitting the trail. The Raptor offers an impressive 1,200 pounds of payload and a maximum 8,000 pounds of towing. This means you can tow along a boat, camper, or ATV vehicle along with you if you want to do something other than drive on the off-road trail.
As such an aggressive vehicle, it surprises people that the Raptor is incredibly safe, especially for off-roading. The LED headlamps and taillamps allow you to drive with full vision and for others to spot you (if on a public trail). The truck has heavy-duty front and engine skid plates as well to protect your underside. With pre-collision braking built-in, the truck will detect and automatically activate the brakes if there is a possible collision. This comes in handy if hunting or driving in unstable conditions where collisions are possible. There is also a reverse sensing system if you find yourself stuck or need to reverse out of a tight space. These features help ensure your safety when traveling over rough landscapes.
General Off-Roading Tips
The Ford Raptor is a one-of-a-kind vehicle that can handle any type of drive you put it through. Nevertheless, whether it’s your first off-road adventure or your hundredth, it’s important you follow these general tips for a responsible trip.
- Come prepared with extra food, water, navigational aids, first-aid kit, cell phone, and clothes in case of emergencies.
- Pack a tow rope, tools, tire gauge, air compressor, and winch in case of vehicle issues.
- Bring a spare tire.
- Make sure your fluids are changed to ensure your vehicle runs smoothly.
- Have a full gas tank.
- Realign tires and keep them at an appropriate PSI for off-road. This is generally between 15 to 20 PSI but can differ depending on the landscape. Reducing the tire pressure allows for greater traction, comfort, and resistance to puncture.
We’re excited for your trip, wherever that may be, but remember to enhance your truck with the best F150 Raptor accessories found only at Specialty Performance Parts. We’ve got you covered regarding anything from light kits to bed covers to switch panels to make your off-road experience memorable.