Thankfully, the automotive community has more to look forward to this year than Fast & Furious 9. Due for release later this year is Ford’s third-generation Raptor. If you’re still loving the previous Raptor, then it might rightfully take some convincing from Ford to get you to invest in the latest model. Thanks to the cost of vehicles like the Ford Raptor, these aren’t exactly trucks you buy blindly.
Luckily, although they’ve yet to hit the shelves, so to speak, there is some intriguing information regarding the latest Raptor out in the wild. This guide is a breakdown of the current details regarding the Ford Raptor 2021, what to know about the release date, price, and new features. This guide should help Ford enthusiasts who might be unsure about investing in the latest model form a more concrete stance on the subject.
Unfortunately, there is no official release day announced for the third-generation Ford Raptor 2021 just yet. Although Ford is keeping the exact release day close to the vest, their announcement video for this new Raptor established a “Summer 2021” release window. Whether that’ll be the beginning of the summer or the end is still up in the air.
As with anything releasing in the midst of the pandemic (yes, even Fast & Furious 9), the new Raptor’s release window may shift at some point, but there are no signs of that occurring at the moment. The latest Raptor’s announcement video also teased something special coming in 2022, so be sure to keep your ear to the ground for involvements regarding whatever that is, too.
Just as there is no official release date for the Ford Raptor 2021, there is no official price at the moment. It seems that many Ford enthusiasts are estimating the new Raptor cost will be around $59,000—but there’s been no official word from Ford themselves. However, with summer 2021 creeping up fairly fast, now’s as good a time as any to start saving up.
What Makes It Different
Besides the release date and price of the Ford Raptor 2021, what to know comes down to the new features. So, as with any new model, you’re probably wondering what makes this one a new and improved model, other than the “2021” attached to the name.
One of the biggest updates to the 2021 Raptor is in the suspension system—both the front and rear. A 2021 Raptor with the standard 35- inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tires will provide 14-inch and 15-inch suspension travel in the front and rear, respectively. Below, we’ll dive deeper into the new Raptor’s suspension upgrades.
Rear Suspension Upgrades
From the look of this new model, the 2021 Raptor doesn’t look like it’ll disappoint off-road enthusiasts. One major upgrade to this new Raptor is the long-travel suspension system. Of course, a long-travel suspension isn’t exactly new to the Raptor, but there is a key difference this year—Brand new coil springs in the rear. The new five-link coil-spring system is replacing the previously used leaf-spring rear suspension.
The 2020 Ford Raptor front suspension successfully utilized coil springs, though this is the first time the rear suspension will get the same treatment. This upgrade might seem minor, but Ford is pushing it as a way of making the 2021 Raptor move faster through the desert. As you might’ve seen in the announcement video for this year’s Raptor, Ford certainly is definitely focusing on speed and handling off-road.
Front Suspension Upgrades
The 2021 Raptor’s new and improved 15-inch suspension travel up front doesn’t come out of thin air. Ford is lauding this new model’s unique knuckle casting, wheel bearings, and steering rack housing. This, in turn, helps the suspension achieve that 15-inch travel stat. For example, the new knuckle casting is crucial for optimizing the Raptor’s ball joints for the new long-travel suspension capabilities.
As we briefly touched on above, the 2021 Raptor’s standard tires are 35-inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2, which should sound familiar to previous Raptor owners. Spoiler alert—it’s because these are the tires found on the previous Raptor models. Luckily, if you’re looking for a tire upgrade, Ford is offering exactly that with the 2021 version. Owners of the new Ford have the chance to buy a Raptor with optional 37-inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain tires.
However, although the 37-inch tires are optional, you won’t be able to buy a 2021 Raptor with 35-inch tires and then swap them out for the 37-inch set yourself. You can try all you want, but those 37-inch tires won’t fit on a third-generation Raptor specially built specifically to handle 35-inch tires.
Don’t worry; there’s a good reason for this—the 2021 Raptor specifically optimized for 37-inch tires requires some slight alterations to the frame and suspension since these vehicles typically don’t display such immense height and tire width. It might only be a two-inch difference from standard tires, but that’s not as small of a difference as it might seem.
It’s important to note that opting for the 37-inch tires instead of the 35-inch set will diminish suspension travel, thus bringing the stats down to 13 inches in the front and 14.1 inches in the rear. While this might all sound negative, there are benefits to these hefty tires, especially for off-road enthusiasts.
The optional 37-inch tires come with better ground clearance—specifically, they provide 1.2 extra inches of clearance than the 35-inch set. 37-inch tires also give the 2021 Raptor better approach and departure angles than 35-inch models. Suffice it to say; if you’re an off-road enthusiast, you might want to consider opting for the 37-inch tires before committing to any 2021 Raptor.
Now that you’re up to speed on the essential specs regarding Ford’s third-generation Raptor, you should have a better understanding of whether or not it’s worth the upgrade. As you can see from the specs above, the new Raptor certainly looks like a worthy upgrade for some drivers, particularly for frequent off-roaders.
Not only can you start saving up for the new Raptor right now, but you can start thinking about potential modifications too. Popular medications like a Raptor LED light kit help drivers further optimize their ride for activities like off-roading. Although this new Raptor strives for off-roading greatness, some extra mods are always a great way to personalize your ride.