Another V8 Raptor Rumor Surfaces and We Couldn’t Be More Excited
Ford is reportedly testing a V8-powered Raptor to combat the Ram Rebel TRX. But which V8 is under the hood?
If you’re looking to find bones to pick on the Ford F-150 Raptor, you certainly won’t find many. In fact, the only real complaint most people have is the fact that Ford ditched the first-gen Raptor’s V8 in favor of the 3.5-liter Ecoboost. Not that the 2nd gen is what anyone would call slow or lacking for power. But it just doesn’t feel or sound like a V8, and that’s a big issue for hardcore old school truck guys like ourselves.
Earlier this year, rumors surfaced that Ford was thinking about throwing us a bone and offering a V8-powered Raptor as a sort of a swan song for the current-gen F-150. And after Dodge announced they were going to build a Raptor-fighting, Hellcat-powered Ram Rebel TRX, it almost seemed like they had to. Now, we’re getting further confirmation that this ultimate reunion might actually be happening, courtesy of Ford Authority.
Ford Authority cites “sources familiar with Ford product plans” that told them the brand is “currently testing with an eight-cylinder engine for an upcoming ultra-high-performance version of the truck.” Now, exactly which V8 engine they plan on using is still a mystery. Could it be the GT500’s supercharged 5.2-liter, the naturally-aspirated Voodoo from the GT350, or maybe the brand-new Super Duty’s 7.3-liter?
Personally, we think that the 2020 GT500’s Predator engine is the logical choice here. Slated to produce “700++” horsepower (actual figures have yet to be released), it makes sense as a Ram Rebel TRX fighter. All we know is that truck is going to receive the Hellcat’s supercharged engine. Which, in current base production form, produces 717 horsepower and 656 lb-ft of torque.
Dodge could also opt to go with the more powerful “Redeye” version of the Hellcat. In that case, they’d be creating a 797 hp, 707 lb-ft monster. But as we’ve learned in the past, Ford isn’t going to lie down and lose the power race. Given that the Voodoo’s flat-plane crank isn’t the best choice for boost, that seems to eliminate that option.
On the other hand, we don’t know much about the new 7.3 yet. But we do know that it’s designed more for truck duty and hauling than outright speed, so there’s that. And surely, Ford would have to add boost to achieve the power levels needed to directly combat the Rebel TRX. And that means additional development dollars.
The new 5.2 shares its core architecture with the existing Coyote that’s already offered in the F-150. So we have to imagine that sticking it in the Raptor would be the easy call here. And in the process, Ford could easily retain its king of the hill performance truck status. If nothing else, you can bet that plenty of folks would line up for such a beast. And personally, we’d be right at the front of the line.
Photos: Ford Motor Company