Here’s What We Know About The New Ford F-150 Raptor R

Who knew supertrucks would become something like this? We are definitely in a golden age of horsepower with the proliferation of extremely fast cars. But not too long ago, if you wanted an extremely high horsepower truck, you had to go to a niche tuner like Hennessey or Shelby for a build that fits your needs. The original Raptor, which debuted over a decade ago, was starting to get the itch for more powerful trucks, but it didn’t deliver these absolutely insane power numbers.

When the Ram TRX came on the scene, everything changed. Its 702 horsepower Hellcat V8 absolutely blew the Raptor’s paltry 450 horsepower V6 out of the water. The TRX has had a lot of good press and there are plenty of fanboys who are now team TRX. Naturally, Ford couldn’t last long. After all, the brand had been at the top of the truck food chain for so long, so it couldn’t give up that easily. This is how the Raptor R comes into play. It doesn’t mess with a small V6, but also rises to the occasion with a supercharged V8. It may be two years too late, but the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R is here and it wants its crown back.

Here’s everything we learned about Ford’s latest addition to the Raptor family.

Related: Ford unleashes a 700-horsepower V8 in the F-150 Raptor R

The new Ford F-150 Raptor R: size means everything

Today, so many internal combustion engines are moving to smaller displacements. Ford even did this while going from the first to second-generation Raptor. The V8 found in the first iteration gave way to a twin-turbo V6 for the second-generation Raptor, much to the chagrin of many enthusiasts. Now Ford has repented of its sins and realized they would just be left in the dust if they didn’t have a glorious V8 to grace the pinnacle of its Raptor lineup.

So that’s exactly what Ford did. The brand was looking for the most viable V8 candidate in its lineup, which, of course, was the Predator V8 found under the hood of the Shelby GT500. Fortunately, the job is done beautifully. In the Raptor R, it produces 700 horsepower and 640 pound-feet of torque. Aspects of this powertrain had to be modified to make it more suitable for the Raptor R. This included a new supercharger pulley specialized to deliver more power off-road. This adjustment gives the Raptor more torque delivery in the low and mid range.

More power also means more air intake. Ford has added a new air intake system that allows the Raptor R to take in two-thirds more air than before. To give the Raptor R a larger and “in charge” presence, Ford has also added a prominent hood hood.

The new Ford F-150 Raptor R still faces an uphill battle

The F-150 Raptor R is undoubtedly a very convincing truck. But there’s still a lot of evidence it needs to do to be crowned the ultimate truck. It has competitors coming at it from all angles. Of course, its closest competitor is the Ram TRX, and technically the TRX still makes more power than the Raptor R. It makes two more horsepower and ten pound-feet more. Ram definitely didn’t let Ford forget this, as they quickly took to Twitter after the Raptor R was announced to announce that they still have the best V8 horsepower in their class.

There is also the entire electric truck segment that is growing at a rapid pace. You have competitors like the GMC Hummer EV truck with 1000 horsepower and a blistering 0-60 mph. The Rivian R1T has up to 835 horsepower, and the price is close to what we think the Raptor R could cost. Automakers in the truck market are racing for the most powerful offering out there. It begs the question of where the Raptor R will fit.

Overall, the F-150 Raptor R seems like a very impressive truck. It gives us a soulful V8 and the power that propels this truck into the big leagues. It takes everything that made the stock Raptor great, and Ford just kicked it up a notch. By returning to its roots, the Predator V8 gives Raptor enthusiasts something to rave about again. It has to do its job with the other very exciting trucks already out or on the way. But if Ford has proven anything, it’s that they know trucks. They have been active in the performance truck sector from the very beginning. We have a good feeling that the Raptor R will hold its own.