The Ford F-150 is one of the most venerable trucks on the road today, with a lineage dating back to the Ford F-Series trucks in 1948. Today’s F-150 is the fourteenth generation of these trucks, introduced in time for the 2021 model year. With 7 different trims and three different cab configurations, there are plenty of Ford F-150 models to choose from, whether you are buying your Ford truck for business or pleasure or a little of both. First introduced with the 2010 F-150 model year, the Raptor trim has quickly captured the hearts and minds of off-road enthusiasts all over the country with its upscale details, special off-road equipment, and powerful exterior profile. The 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor represents the third generation of this standard four-wheel drive, trail-loving truck.
Those first F-150 Raptors were built from 2010 to 2014, with a brief two-year break before being introduced in time for the 2017 model year. As the popularity of this model grew, so did the demand for upgrades in performance, which Ford Motor Company has taken big strides to address. This 2021 F-150 Raptor represents the most advanced off-road truck ever built by Ford, with plenty of great features that are sure to attract even the most demanding of pickup truck enthusiasts.
The 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor has an estimated starting price of $59,000. This is for the Raptor with the SuperCab configuration. This model has two rows of seats, two full-size doors in front, and two half doors in the rear. The other model is a SuperCrew that has two rows of seats accessible by four full-size doors. There is a bit of a premium involved in getting behind the wheel of a Raptor as compared to the base F-150 XL. However, considering all the upgrades and unique features, the price difference is more than made up for with the overall value of the Raptor truck.
Every model of the 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor comes equipped with a High Output Twin-Turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 gas engine. This engine is going to be stronger than any of the other F-150 engine options, including the other 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 that produces 400 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque. The High Output 3.5-liter engine is expected to produce at least 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque, though exact numbers have yet to be released. The 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor pairs its engine with a 10-speed automatic transmission that features paddle shifters to give you improved and easier control over the engine’s performance.
This engine has a 10.5:1 compression ratio with upgraded high-power fans built into the cooling system to provide better overall performance. It also features a 3.0-inch exhaust system with a built-in X-pipe, active valves, and a “trombone loop” that will work together to let all the other drivers know that you are coming.
Ford has equipped the 2021 F-150 Raptor with a 36-gallon fuel tank. As a result, the truck has an EPA-estimated range of over 500 miles on a full tank of gas. Most dedicated off-road pickup trucks are not noted for their ability to contribute when it comes to the utilities often associated with pickups, like carrying a lot of stuff in the payload or towing heavy trailers because that's simply not what they're really meant for. Fortunately, the 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor is an off-road trim that will still help you when you have to move stuff. It is rated to be able to tow up to 8,200 pounds while having the ability to carry up to 1,400 pounds of cargo in its 5.5-foot payload box, which has a full 52.8 cubic feet of space.
The main reason to buy the Raptor trim on the 2021 Ford F-150 is all of its great off-road features. It starts with your choice of 35-inch or 37-inch tires, available on the Raptor 37 Performance Package. These tires are BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Tires, which are the largest factory tires available in the 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor’s class.
Those tires are fitted on 17-inch forged aluminum bead-lock capable wheels, giving you the ability to get up and over obstacles that other off-road trucks will have to drive around. For example, the Raptor equipped with the standard 35-inch tires has an approach angle of 31 degrees, a maximum departure angle of 23.9 degrees, a breakover angle of 22.7 degrees, and a 12-inch clearance. This increases to a 33.1-degree approach angle, a 24.9-degree departure angle, a 24.4-degree breakover angle, and 13.1 inches of obstacle clearance. Those numbers translate into incomparable performance.
The F-150 Raptor features Next Gen Fox Shocks with Live Valve Technology. These are special monotube shocks with internal bypass technology allowing for automatic adjustment to changes in terrain as well as active damping. This will give your 2021 Raptor an incomparable ride even on the most challenging trails. These pair well with the Raptor’s 5-link rear suspension with a panhard rod.
One of the features you’re sure to love is the Raptor’s Terrain Management System. This offers seven different modes to give you greater control over your truck, including Normal, Slippery, Sport, Tow/Haul, Off-Road, Baja, and Rock Crawl. There is also an all-new Trail Control with a standard Trail 1-Pedal Drive that will be ideal on the toughest off-road courses. This improves the performance by combining the most complex off-road tasks into a simple single throttle operation. All you have to do is press the throttle to move forward, release your foot off the brake, and the system does all the rest.
The F-150 Raptor features a four-wheel drivetrain based around a torque-on-demand transfer case. This will increase the amount of torque to the wheel that needs it most, a key feature for off-roading. It also has a standard electronic locking rear differential. Ford also offers an optional TORSEN front limited-slip differential. There are plenty of skid plates in critical places, including a wider front skid plate that offers greater protection than on the prior version of the Raptor. Finally, you can add Rigid off-road fog lamps to provide extra illumination when you find yourself in a poorly lit part of the trail. All of these features add up to a Raptor built for speed, power, ruggedness, and reliability, all of the things you need when tackling nature at the hardest spots.
The 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor comes in either a SuperCab or SuperCrew configuration. The key difference is that the SuperCrew has a larger back seat with four full-size doors, while the SuperCab has two full-size and two half-size doors. Both configurations will comfortably seat up to 5 passengers, with front row passengers receiving 40.8 inches of headroom, 43.9 inches of legroom, 66.7 inches of shoulder room, and 62.5 inches of hip room. The key difference is in the rear seat. Both the SuperCab and SuperCrew have 62.6 inches of hip room. However, while the SuperCab affords 40.3 inches of headroom, 33.5 inches of legroom, and 66.1 inches shoulder room, the SuperCrew provides 40.4 inches of headroom, 43.6 inches of legroom, and 66 inches of shoulder room.
Whichever one you choose, you and your passengers are going to love the 2021 Raptor’s interior. There is a leather-wrapped steering wheel with an orange top centering mark at the top and aluminum paddle shifters. The seats have large bolsters to provide added support to your passengers while you are playing daredevil. The standard interior is aluminum with an available carbon fiber finish and front Recaro bucket seats on the Raptor 37 Performance Package. If you opt for this Package, you will also get Rhapsody Blue seats with Alcantara Suede inserts and Code Orange stitching. There is no word on whether the Ford SYNC 4 infotainment system plays Gershwin as well.
Talking about the SYNC 4 system, it is standard on all Raptor models with an enormous 12.0-inch color touchscreen. This includes all of your favorite features like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Amazon Alexa, as well as wireless smartphone charging. If you are a real audiophile, then you are going to want to spring for the optional 18-speaker B&O Unleashed sound system from Bang & Olufsen.
Ford has equipped the 2021 F-150 Raptor with its exceptional Ford Co-Pilot360 Technology suite of active safety features. This includes a Lane-Keeping System, Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, Auto High-Beam Headlamps, Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control, Rear View Camera with Dynamic Hitch Assist to help with trailering, Pro Trailer Backup Assist, Hill Descent Control, Connective Built-In Navigation, Evasive Steering Assist, Active Park Assist 2.0, and Intersection Assist. There is also an available BLIS blind spot information system with trailer coverage to help you with highway lane changes, especially when you are using your F-150 Raptor to tow a trailer. Each of these will work together as part of the Ford Co-Pilot360 system to make the Raptor not just a fun truck to drive but also one of the safest.