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Ford’s Desert-Racing, Rock-Crawling 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor Is Its Most Powerful Street-Legal Bronco Ever

Ford debuted its most powerful street-legal Bronco this week. Already sought after by celebrities, the Bronco Raptor offers buyers a rock-crawling performance SUV that is the most powerful Bronco in the brand.


Ford Bronco Raptor Equally Home Off-Roading Or Rock-Crawling
Two Ford icons that have tackled off-road terrain for years are coming together to take on even more: Bronco and Raptor. Built for desert running and boulder crawling, the all-new 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor gives off-roaders next-level performance.

The newest member of the Bronco outdoor brand of Built Wild SUVs, Bronco Raptor debuted this week as the most potent street-legal Bronco ever and the world's first Ultra4 Racing-inspired SUV. Ford Performance, the same team that produces the F-150 Raptor, designed and engineered Bronco Raptor as a calling to hardcore off-road enthusiasts. Pricing reportedly begins at about $63,500.

Already, there is a report that movie action star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson wants one.

Much Of The Raptor Bronco Is Based On Racing Technology

Bronco Raptor features great off-road technology and hardware. Ultra4 Racing is the epitome of grueling off-road competition. It features demanding races such as the famed King of the Hammers in the Johnson Valley in California. Indeed, the Bronco Raptor will be on display on Feb. 3. Ford and Bronco will continue as the official truck and SUV of the Ultra4 series.

With the addition of Bronco Raptor, Ford again expands its Raptor high-performance off-road vehicle franchise, including F-150 Raptor for North America and Ranger Raptor for global markets.

"Raptor is the apex of our off-road lineup and is now a full lineup with race-proven content and design that you can't get from anyone else," said Jim Farley, chief executive officer, Ford Motor Company. "Only Ford could create a Bronco Raptor."

Beyond the Raptor family, Ford offers an unmatched variety of additional on- and off-road high-performance and specialty performance vehicles, from Mustang Shelby GT500, the pinnacle of Mustang street performance, to the ST lineup of cars and SUVs, to the Tremor family of F-Series and Ranger tough and work-capable off-road trucks.

Ford Performance unleashes extreme Built Wild capability and durability

Ford Performance set the bar high to build the world's first Ultra4-inspired SUV. Bronco Raptor had to be even faster and bring more off-road capability, agility, and maneuverability than Bronco already delivers.

"We had to build the Bronco Raptor – it's our ultimate vehicle for hardcore off-road enthusiasts who demand something more," said Carl Widmann, Ford Performance chief engineer. "Like the Ultra4 desert race trucks, the 'Raptor of SUVs' conquers desert dunes at highway speeds and is equipped with competition-level off-road technology and hardware."

Starting with the Bronco frame foundation, the Ford Performance team knew it needed a Raptor-specific version for increased suspension travel and track width for handling stability during high-speed desert runs.

At its core, the Bronco Raptor uses a fully-boxed, high-strength steel frame with new shock towers that increase wheel travel and off-road durability. Heavy-duty bash and skid plates provide continuous driveline coverage from the front bumper to the back of the engine, transmission, and transfer case. In the upper body, B-pillar crossbar and C-pillar reinforcement help deliver a greater than 50 percent total body-in-prime torsional rigidity increase over a standard Bronco four-door model.

Features Upgraded Front And Rear Axles

Competition-level, Ford Performance-developed axles, also used on the Bronco DR race truck, further deliver on the Ultra4-inspiration. The solid rear axle is upgraded to a semi-float Dana 50™ Heavy-Duty AdvanTEK® with a 235-millimeter ring gear, while the Dana 44™ AdvanTEK front-drive unit includes upgraded half-shafts with a 210-millimeter ring gear.

The upgraded front and rear axles increase the track width by 8.6 inches -- 73.6 inches versus 65.0 inches -- over a base Bronco for even more sure-footed confidence. Larger front and rear driveshafts support increased wheel torque. Bronco Raptor also runs with a minimum ground clearance of 13.1 inches, 4.8 inches more than a base four-door model.

An advanced 4x4 system with three modes includes a higher-capacity clutch designed to withstand the demands of high-performance desert events. The upgraded transfer case also features a 3.06 4x4 LO ratio for up to 67.7:1 crawl ratio.

The Ford Performance team collaborated with FOX™ to upgrade the High-Performance Off-Road Stability Suspension (HOSS) system with Live Valve technology.

Like the F-150 Raptor truck's position-sensitive damping design, the Raptor HOSS 4.0 system features FOX 3.1 Internal Bypass Semi-Active Dampers -- 3.1-inch diameter -- uniquely tuned at the front and rear and feature integrated reservoirs up front and remote reservoirs in the rear.

Suspension Continuously Monitored

Suspension height sensors and other sensors at each corner monitor terrain conditions independently hundreds of times every second and adjust suspension tuning accordingly.

Unique Ford Performance-designed front and rear control arms help deliver maximum wheel travel of 13.0 inches in front and 14.0 inches at the rear, or 60 percent and 40 percent more, respectively, than a Bronco base model.

To deliver the confidence and high-speed needs of the world's first Ultra4-inspired SUV, the Ford Performance team reached out to BFGoodrich for standard 37-inch KO2 all-terrain tires (37x12.50R17LT), the largest of any production SUV in America. Two Ford Performance-designed 17-inch x 8.5-inch bead-lock-capable wheels are available.

The Bronco Raptor development team added an electric power-steering rack and housing, influenced by F-150 Raptor, plus larger-diameter inner and outer tie rod ends to upgrade Bronco Raptor further.

Bronco Raptor Features Engine Tweaks

To give Bronco Raptor even more desert-running power, the Ford powertrain team tuned the proven twin-turbo 3.0-liter EcoBoost® engine with specific Raptor-level tuning to meet Ford Performance standards. With a target of more than 400 horsepower, Bronco Raptor will be the most potent street-legal Bronco ever, with intercooler and air-induction systems designed to endure the higher ambient desert temperatures.

For higher-speed desert capabilities or crawling over rocks, the compacted graphite iron-block engine, which saves weight while providing strength for added durability, is paired with a 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission tuned to meet Ford Performance standards. A real dual-exhaust system, featuring first-for-Bronco active-valve technology, uses near-equal-length pipes for an improved exhaust note. The system allows drivers to alter the sound of their Bronco Raptor with four selectable exhaust modes, including Normal, Sport, Quiet, and Baja.

Bronco Raptor builds on the brand's exclusive GOAT Modes (Goes Over Any Terrain) Terrain Management System designed to help drivers better navigate off-road. Seven driver-selectable modes include a uniquely tuned Baja Mode that activates a turbo anti-lag calibration that maximizes performance over high-speed desert runs.

New to Bronco is Tow/Haul mode that helps enable a tow rating of 4,500 pounds, a 1,000-pound improvement over the base model.
Joining the Tow/Haul mode are:

  • Trail Control
  • Trail Turn Assist
  • Trail One-Pedal Driving

Raptor styling with extreme Built Wild innovative design

The Bronco Raptor delivers purpose-built design, infusing Raptor-family signature cues with the truck's Built Wild innovative design.

"As the most badass Bronco yet, the Bronco Raptor design is extreme," said Paul Wraith, Bronco design chief. "It's muscular while maintaining an underlying simplicity with performance-focused details added only for outstanding high-speed capability."

Familiar Ford block lettering at the front stretches across the signature two-piece rectangular grille. Model-specific LED headlights featuring amber daytime running lamps and integrated amber marker lamps further tie in the DNA of Raptor to provide a menacing look.

A heavy-duty modular steel front bumper by Ford Performance features tow hooks, removable bumper end caps for improved off-road clearance, integrated removable Rigid LED fog lamps, and Rigid off-road lamps for better illumination.

The hood on Bronco Raptor is made of a sheet-molding compound, offering the design team the ability to sculpt its muscular shape dramatically. An integrated hood vent features molded-in-color carbon black and body-color-painted fender vents. The hood also features Raptor logos on the left and right of the hood bulge that hints at the twin-turbo power underneath.

Bronco Raptor proudly leverages the Bronco SUV's patented off-road modular design, strips it to its base, and replaces components with unique-to-Raptor front and rear quarter-panels, fenders, fender flares, and door appliques. Sheet-molding compound helps to sculpt the wider front fenders and integrated bodyside heat extraction ducts, which provide additional engine cooling. Sheet-molding compound rear-quarter panels provide a muscular look. With fender flares, Bronco Raptor sits 9.8 inches wider than a standard Bronco. Bronco Raptor-specific reinforced rock rails with removable running boards increase rock-crawling capability.

For even more Raptor-styling DNA, an available Bronco Raptor Graphics Package includes new splatter graphics on the rear bodysides and hood that use an overlapping broken trapezoidal pattern and floating shapes to present a sophisticated digital appearance. Exterior colors include Hot Pepper Red Metallic, Velocity Blue Metallic, Eruption Green Metallic, Shadow Black, Iconic Silver Metallic, Area 51, Cactus Gray, Cyber Orange Metallic Tri-Coat, Oxford White, plus Ford Performance-exclusive Code Orange paint.

Race-focused with a performance-optimized interior

Bronco Raptor features a familiar heritage-inspired horizontal dash, integrating an all-digital 12-inch cluster. The cluster allows drivers to select from various views, including a Bronco Raptor-exclusive Performance View that emphasizes tachometer and gear readings and lets you customize gauges.

"The Bronco Raptor interior was designed around what we know hardcore off-road racers want in a vehicle," said Ryan Olsson, design manager. "From the all-new Performance View on the cluster and unique steering wheel with paddle shifters and fingertip access to Raptor-specific controls to its race-ready, high-bolster front seats, Bronco Raptor leaves the factory ready for the starting line."

On base Bronco Raptor models, you will find Black Onyx marine-grade vinyl seats and rubberized washout flooring. The dark interior is accented with Ford Performance Code Orange splashes on the GOAT Modes rotary dial, dash vents, door netting, steering wheel stitching, and Bronco logo on the instrument panel. Even the push-button ignition lights up in Code Orange. Touchpoints such as the grab handles, steering wheel bezel, and gear shifter wear low-gloss carbon fiber accents.

Owners can opt for upgraded features such as all-new laser-perforated Black Onyx Neo suede seats, vinyl-wrapped instrument panel topper, leather-wrapped outer seat bolsters, and carpet flooring.

A thicker and sport-contoured steering wheel with magnesium paddle shifters and gloss black Raptor logo center continues the Ford Performance treatment.

Bronco Raptor Features Performance Seats

Ford Performance-designed front seats are unique to Bronco Raptor, designed with aggressive foam side bolsters to help keep passengers firmly seated when the terrain gets nasty. Available Code Orange seat belts provide even more Ford Performance style.

Bronco Raptor comes standard with a High Package that includes SYNC4 with a 12-inch touchscreen with swipe capability, information on-demand panel, and enhanced voice recognition. Other technology features include an exterior camera with 360-degree viewing capability.

The Lux package is available for customers looking for even more human-centered technology, such as an available 10-speaker B&O audio system and Adaptive Cruise Control.

Customers can begin placing orders in March. Most of the 2022 model year Bronco Raptor allocation will go to existing reservation holders based upon their original reservation timestamp. Ford will ask reservation holders about their interest in Bronco Raptor later this month. Vehicles will begin to arrive this summer.

Photo, Video Courtesy Ford Motor Co.Marc Stern has been an automotive writer since 1971 when an otherwise normal news editor said, "You're our new car editor," and dumped about 27 pounds of auto stuff on my desk. I was in heaven as I have been a gearhead from my early days. As a teen, I spent the usual number of misspent hours hanging out at gas stations Shell and Texaco (a big thing in my youth) and working on cars. From there on, it was a straight line to my first column for the paper, "You Auto Know," an enterprise that I handled faithfully for 32 years. Not many people know that I also handled computer documentation for a good part of my living while writing YAN. My best writing, though, was always in cars. My work has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, etc. You can follow me on: Twitter or Facebook.