Ford Bronco Raptor

Taking rugged appearance and performance to another level

Roseville, Calif.- This is one monstrous SUV that performs like a Jeep. In fact, the Ford Bronco Raptor resembles a big jeep, one that’s designed to compete head-to-head with the revered Jeep Wrangler.

We sampled the revised Ford Bronco SUV a year ago and liked its rugged appeal. Yet the Raptor – 9.8 inches wider, 4.8 inches taller and 1.6 inches longer than the standard Bronco – takes rugged appearance and performance to another level.

Off-road beast

The all-new Ford Bronco Raptor also provides far more performance, a taller suspension, and bigger tires than a standard Bronco. As one might suspect, the Raptor is a beast in off-road situations because it accelerates quickly, scales rocks and boulders, and can easily dig itself out of the mud or a snowbank.

The Raptor is equipped with a dramatically improved suspension and parts that were borrowed from the F-150 Raptor pickup truck. It rests 13.1 inches off the ground and has humongous 37-inch tires. It measures 191 inches in length, 85.7 inches in width, and 77.8 inches in height.

Its offroad arsenal includes front and rear locking differentials, a bar disconnect, and a two-range transfer case with good crawl ratio. It also has updated steering components and wider track widths – 73.6 inches in the back and 73.2 inches up front.

The Raptor has a cool look, especially the three amber lights in the middle of the front grille. Note that the lights are required on vehicles that exceed a certain width. The exterior also features exaggerated fender flares and has that bulked up, ready for action appeal.

Normal driving

We’ve established the Bronco Raptor can get after it when off-roading, but how does it perform in normal driving situations? The answer is pretty darn good for a rough and tumble vehicle. Be careful, because the large tires will require the driver to concentrate on just keeping it between the white lines.

Admittedly, it’s not easy to squeeze the 5,764-pound vehicle into a parking space. But when it’s time to park, it’s great to have standard parking sensors and a surround-view camera to help ease into a spot. Standard driving safety features include forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control.

The Bronco Raptor has one engine, a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter, V6 that delivers 418 horsepower and 440 pound-feet of torque, and is paired with a rapid-shifting 10-speed automatic. It’s extremely quick for a big fella, going 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds. A towing capacity of 4,500 pounds is another plus, but getting 15-16 mpg is a major downside.

AT A GLANCE – FORD BRONCO RAPTOR

  • Performance: twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter, V6, 418 horsepower
  • Mileage estimate: 15-16 mpg
  • Price estimate: $71,100 to $80,300
  • Warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles; Drivetrain: 5 years/60,000 miles; Roadside assistance: 5 years/60,000; Corrosion: 5 years/unlimited
interior cabin photo of Ford Bronco Raptor

Interior amenities

The Raptor mirrors the interior dimensions and design of the regular Bronco. It gets the nod over the Wrangler in terms of interior comfort, due to its roomier seating, better support, and solid head and leg space.

We had no major issues getting accustomed to the 12-inch touchscreen. The Bronco has the latest Ford infotainment and connectivity software. It comes standard with heated seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote start, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and Wi-Fi hotspot. Both rows have a USB-A and USB-C port.

It also smartly has a rack on the top of its dashboard that’s capable of mounting smartphones and GoPros for creating memorable videos on those off-road journeys.

The Ford Bronco Raptor is a fantastic choice for anyone who really values a terrific off-road vehicle. It’s extremely capable in those situations, but also performs fine in normal driving. Overall, Ford offers a solid alternative to the Jeep Wrangler.

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