The arrival of the Ford’s rugged pickup truck in Europe is a pleasant surprise.
Unveiled at the Gamescom trade fair, the Ford Ranger Raptor goes on sale in Europe by mid-2019, with a new diesel engine no less.
The euro-spec Ranger Raptor is powered by a turbocharged, ‘EcoBlue’ 2.0L diesel engine with 210 horsepower and 369 lb-ft. of torque, channeled to all four wheels with a 10-speed automatic transmission.
A unique suspension featuring FOX shock absorbers with Position Sensitive Damping, a Terrain Management System with six different driving modes (Normal, Sport, Grass/Gravel/Snow, Mud/Sand, Rock and Baja), and bespoke all-terrain BF Goodrich 285/70 R17 tires help the truck tackle anything you can throw at it.
Leo Roeks, Ford Performance Director, Europe, stated:
“Forget everything you think you know about pick-ups. Our new Ranger Raptor is a different breed – a thoroughbred desert racer and extreme lifestyle off-roader that can toil with the best of them in the harshest of working conditions.”
It’s peculiar for Ford to show off the Ranger Raptor in Europe before pickup-happy North America, but that’s probably because the former has never had a pickup of such nature while the later has for years been graced with rugged, much more substantial F-150 Raptor. It’s just a matter of urgency, which isn’t to say the smaller Raptor won’t be a hit in America.
It will be interesting to see if the U.S. / Canadian-spec model will be offered with a diesel.
New, 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Turns Up The Heat On Camaro, Challenger
The new GT500 is the most powerful street-legal Ford vehicle ever built.
A supercharged, 5.2L V8 breathes under the hood of this monster from Dearborn, producing “more than 700 horsepower” transmitted to the rear wheels via a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic. Unfortunately, there is no option for a manual transmission.
By comparison, the most recent Mustang GT350 — formerly the most powerful street-legal Ford vehicle ever built — cranks out 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque from a naturally-aspirated 5.2L flat-plane crankshaft V8 that’s paired with a six-speed manual transmission.
It’s not just a supercharger and a more sophisticated gearbox that sets the GT500 apart from the lesser GT350, however. Ford’s engineers also equipped bigger brakes, notably 16.5-inch, two-piece rotors that embarrass the Challenger Hellcat’s massive serving trays; a cooling system that allows for 50 percent more airflow over the engine; revised aerodynamics that improve downforce; and a re-tuned suspension with standard MagneRide.
Buyers can further enhance their car with an available Handling Package and Carbon Fiber Track Pack. The former includes adjustable strut top mounts and a spoiler with an integrated Gurney flap, while the latter (as you would expect) adds lots of carbon fiber bits inside and out and a set of Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires that are more track-ready than the standard Michelin Pilot Sport 4S.
All the standard and optional performance goodies combine to allow this Ford to go from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in the “mid-3-second” range and complete the quarter mile in under 11 seconds.
Visually, the Mustang Shelby GT 500 gets a wider front grille and a more muscular hood than the GT350, as well as wider front and rear fenders, a new rear spoiler and updated composite materials in the rear diffuser. Highlights of the interior include Recaro seats, a 12-speaker B&O Play audio system are available, and unique Shelby badging.
Which would you choose: The new Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 or the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat? Let us know in the comments below, stating your reasons why.
Ford Increases Production Of New Ranger To Meet Strong Demand
People like Ford’s new midsize truck — they really like it.
Ford has that demand for the new Ford Ranger is exceeding expectations, prompting it to start overtime shifts to increase production.
The American automaker says about 300,000 buyers have already indicated plans to buy the new Ranger and expects to sell 1,200 units in the truck’s first full month of production.
“Based on the orders coming in, and based on the hand-raisers, we think the demand’s going to be so strong, that starting in February our assembly plant will be going into massive overtime,” Kumar Galhotra, Ford’s president of North America.
It’s a good start for the new Ranger, but if Ford wants to beat the the segment-leading Toyota Tacoma , it will need to sell a lot more than 1,200 units per month.
The Tacoma sold between 16,000 and 23,000 units each month in 2018, while Chevrolet sold between 8,000 and 12,000 midsize Colorados. At its peak in the 1990s, the old Ranger sold more than 300,000 Rangers per year.
In other news, Ford has confirmed that it’s developing a new pickup truck even smaller than the Ranger to offer a more urban friendly alternative for buyers.
Ford Mustang Hybrid Will Have V8 Engine And AWD?
Ford’s gasoline-electric muscle car will be a first in more than one way.
The upcoming Ford Mustang hybrid might actually have a V8 engine like its predecessors, literally giving it V8 power rather than the “V8-like” power previously alluded.
New patent filings uncovered by suggest Ford doesn’t necessarily see electrification as an excuse to downsize. Filed by the American automaker in July 2017 but not published until January 2019, the filings outline a “twin motor drive system for hybrid vehicle” consisting of a a longitudinally-mounted internal combustion engine that powers the rear wheels and a two electric motors that each spins one of the front wheels via a reduction gearbox.
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This setup effectively gives the Mustang all-wheel drive for the first time ever in the model’s long and storied history.
Although the patent notes the hybrid system is compatible with a variety of internal combustion engines, it clearly shows an eight-cylinder engine. Ford wasn’t necessarily alluding to V8-like power when it announced back in 2018 that the Mustang hybrid would have “V8 levels of power and even more torque.”
The company has fast-tracked the Mustang hybrid to production, with plans to release it sometime in 2020. How do you envision it?