2012 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor
(6.2L V8 4x4 6-speed Automatic 5.6 ft. Bed)
What our ratings include
Date Driven: 8/3/2010 (2010 6.2L SuperCab)
The Raptor's optional 6.2-liter V8 is strong, but there is no getting around the fact that this truck weighs 3 tons, rides on tall off-road tires and punches a big hole in the air. It's as fast as it needs to be, though.
On paved roads, where even the Raptor will spend most of its time, it handles like the high-riding off-road truck that it is. Stopping distances are longish, too. But the steering is pleasingly accurate and responsive for daily driving.
That high-riding suspension produces ride that is generally soft but is also well damped and unlikely to produce car sickness. Certain sharp bumps can produce some shake or a twitch, but the general feeling is one of composure.
If you want quiet, look elsewhere because the 6.2-liter engine purrs with a noticeable V8 burble when cruising the highway. There's a bit of tire noise, too. None of this is out of character, though. It's practically expected.
All of the major controls, as well as the audio and climate controls on the center stack, are simply and logically laid out in a self-explanatory way. The driving position is good, with a generous range of adjustment.
Despite broad fenders, the high-up driving position gives a commanding view of the road ahead. But those same factors hamper the up-close view in parking lots and driveways. Our test truck's optional back-up camera should be considered a must.
Seat Access & Space
You step up into a Raptor, but well-placed grab handles ease this task. Running boards are standard, but are counterproductive for tall folk. The front seats are spacious and open, but the SuperCab's rear seat isn't ideal for long trips.
Cargo & Storage
Small item storage is good inside, and the rear seats fold up for inside carrying of larger items. Of course there's the shortish 5.5-foot truck bed, which in our case is more flexible with the optional bed extender and tailgate step.
The Ford Raptor appears well made, inside and out. Good quality materials are used inside.
A tow rating of 6,000 pounds isn't earth-shattering, but towing prep is top-notch: gobs of torque, six-speed automatic with tow-haul mode, preinstalled hitch and lighting sockets, built-in electric trailer brake controller, back-up camera.
This is what the Raptor is all about, though the type of off-road prowess here tends toward desert-running. In addition to the suspension and 4x4 system with low range, there's an electronic locking rear diff and special off-road ESC modes.