When the Ford Ranger Raptor was launched, it got a lot of attention. A lot of people, including Richard Hammond, even loved it too. There was, however, one complaint about it that popped up more than a few times - it didn't have a big petrol engine like its F-150 Raptor sibling. Clearly this is something that Ford's been taking into account, because according to Australian publication Wheels, they've been hard at work creating a special Ranger Raptor for the Aussie market...
This version of the Ranger Raptor will have the 5.0 Coyote V8 engine from the Ford Mustang in it. Whilst the exact power figures are yet to be confirmed, it's expected to be close to the power of that in the current Mustang GT. That means it should have a power output of around 450-460 hp - certainly enough to get a serious move on! A lack of performance has been one of the Ranger Raptor's biggest critiscisms, something which the V8 conversion will definitely solve.
The most interesting part of this project is that the engineering work to carry out the V8 conversion is going to be done by an Australian firm. A batch of donor Ranger Raptors with the original 2.0 biturbo diesel engine will arrive in Australia and be sent to the external firm. Then, a number of performance upgrades, including the V8 conversion, will be done.
It's not the first time a car manufacturer has done this, or even the first time a pickup truck has had this kind of treatment (the Nissan Navara Warrior is a good previous example of it). Still, it's very cool to see a big manufacturer like Ford enlist the engineering help of a homegrown Aussie company.
Is this something that would sell outside of Australia? We'd have to see what demand is like. I certainly wouldn't be surprised if requests from some enthusiasts from the UK and Europe start coming in about having one of these V8 Ranger Raptors. We've already seen how popular Australian-grown cars like the Monaro were with British car enthusiasts. Why not tap into that again with this super-powered Ranger Raptor?