New Ford F-150 Raptor suspension video

  • Raptor is high-performance version of F-150 pickup
  • US best-seller now even more capable off-road
  • Watch new Fox suspension at work in official video

Ford has released a video showing off the new suspension system for its high-performance F-150 Raptor pickup truck.

This doesn’t exactly sound like the most riveting watch, but you only need to get a few seconds into the clip below to see what it’s making a fuss about – the moment the Raptor plunges sideways off that sand bar you can instantly grasp just how capable this machine really is off-road.

The Raptor is the range-topping version of Ford’s USA best-selling F-150 – and by best-selling we mean it’s been not just the most popular pickup in America since 1977 but the best-selling vehicle full stop since 1981. So it’s a bit of a big deal. The Raptor is far from being the bread and butter of the range, of course, but it does have a 3.5-litre twin-turbo V6 motor and a 10-speed automatic gearbox – which makes it alright with us.

Combined with the latest F-150’s “military grade” aluminium construction, this makes the Raptor fast as well as tough and practical. But as they say, power is nothing without control – which is where the new suspension comes in.

What’s special about the 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor’s suspension?

Co-developed by Ford and off-road racing specialist Fox suspension, new shock absorbers in the 2017 model year Raptor are bigger in every dimension – leading to a massive 44 percent increase in damping volume, which means they should perform better for longer. They're said to be the "most capable" shock absorbers ever fitted at the factory by a pickup manufacturer.

Speaking of longer, actual suspension travel is increased nearly two inches front and rear – that’s roughly 15 percent – to 13.0 inches and 13.9 inches respectively, improving the Raptor’s ability to absorb serious bumps and drops. Inside the new dampers there are no less than nine separate chambers to “progressively manage shock forces”, so it should be comfortable across a wide range of terrain.

What’s the catch?

Well, the Raptor isn’t cheap – the 2017 version is likely to cost around $50,000 when it goes on sale in Autumn; that’s around £38,000 at current exchange rates.

The bigger obstacle for UK buyers, of course, is that the F-150 isn’t officially sold over here in any guise, so if you’re interested you’ll need to approach a specialist importer.

The closest Ford product you can buy in the UK is the Ranger – but really that’s not very close at all.

To read road tests and reviews of the Ford Ranger click here

To browse for a used Ford Ranger for sale on Parkers click here