By: David Arnouts on 6/26/2012 For Autoweek.com
Ford will offer some unique upgrades for its off-road terror, the F-150 SVT Raptor, in the 2013 model year.
According to Ford, the truck will offer an industry-first—beadlock wheels direct from the factory. Beadlocks allow the driver to secure the edges of the tire to the wheel by clamping the tire between the wheel and a beadlock ring kit from Ford Racing. Once the wheels are locked to the tires, the driver is free to lower tire pressure for increased traction in certain conditions.
Also available will be HID headlamps and a new earth-tone, desert-camouflage-inspired exterior color called “Terrain.” No pricing on the options has been announced.
A 2012 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor starts at $43,970 including the $995 destination fee. Sales of the 6.2-liter, 411-hp V8 truck increased 20 percent from January to May this year.
The full press release follows:
Ford Raptor Redefines Factory Off-Road Truck with Exclusive New Beadlock Wheels, High Technology, Camo-Inspired Color
DEARBORN, Mich., June 26, 2012 – Ford is delivering higher levels of capability in the new 2013 F-150 SVT Raptor, answering the call from off-road enthusiasts for even more performance.
The latest Raptor features available industry-first, direct-from-the-factory forged-aluminum conventional wheels that can be upgraded after purchase to extra-capable beadlocks, plus other functional improvements. These include available high-intensity discharge HID headlamps that are brighter and whiter than standard lamps, significantly expanded connectivity features and Terrain, a new earth-toned exterior color.
“Ford F-150 SVT Raptor’s popularity continues to grow based on its proven reputation,” said Ford SVT Chief Engineer Jamal Hameedi. “It’s the ultimate high-performance off-road pickup, so it’s critical that we continue to push the boundaries of off-road capability. New available beadlock wheels help to improve Raptor’s performance in soft sand and other challenging conditions, enabling our customers to go further.”
SVT Raptor sales are up 20 percent in 2012, breaking last year’s record in the January to May period.
Off-road high performance
Raptor’s newly available forged wheel combines the proven reliability of a conventional wheel with the capability to convert to a true beadlock wheel.
Beadlock wheels secure the edges of a tire to the wheel between two surfaces so the tire is unlikely to roll off the rim if it’s aired down to very low pressure, providing extra grip on the trail.
Raptor’s wheels are unique because converting from conventional rim to beadlock only requires that customers unbolt the standard outer decorative ring, dismount the tire from its regular position and then remount the tire in the lock-enabled position with the available beadlock ring kit from Ford Racing.
This marks the first application of a wheel that has both conventional and beadlock-mounting abilities – a solution so innovative that Ford has filed for a patent on the system.
“Raptor’s exclusive beadlock wheels give the customer the best of both on- and off-road worlds,” said Adam Wirth, SVT chassis engineer. “Tire inflation can be dropped to a very low threshold for maximum traction under extreme conditions, yet holds tight – and stays tight – when returning to the road.”
SVT Raptor connectivity
SVT Raptor features Ford’s acclaimed SYNC® communications and entertainment system, allowing hands-free voice-activated control of a driver’s mobile device and the truck’s audio system. For 2013, SVT Raptor adds a new 4.2-inch multifunction LCD screen for the MyFord® driver connect technology.
SVT Raptor’s driver connectivity can be upgraded to MyFord Touch® using an 8-inch center stack touch screen with five-way controls mounted on the steering wheel. In addition, this connectivity upgrade features the 4.2-inch productivity screen, mounted in the instrument cluster. Driver-configurable, this LCD screen includes menus for gauge setup, trip computer, fuel economy and towing/off-road applications. Truck-specific MyFord Touch offers additional button controls and rotating knobs to accommodate a driver’s work gloves.
SVT Raptor can be specified with an available voice-activated Navigation System using the 8-inch screen and SD-card capability for map and points-of-interest storage.
A rear view camera is available as well.
Inside SVT Raptor
SVT Raptor is equipped with standard unique leather and cloth-trimmed seats, with driver’s side power actuation and six-way adjustability. These seats feature Raptor-specific bolsters to keep the driver and first-row passenger firmly in place, regardless of terrain conditions.
The SVT Raptor interior features unique center stack and door trim appliqué finish and leather-trimmed steering wheel with thumb pads.
SVT Raptor can be ordered with an optional Luxury Package, adding numerous comfort and convenience technologies. In addition, SVT Raptor can be specified with an interior color accent package, featuring contrasting blue against a black environment and real aluminum trim components.
Cloth-trimmed sport seats are available to government and fleet buyers.
Outside, SVT Raptor is available in Race Red, Blue Flame Metallic, Tuxedo Black Metallic, Ingot Silver Metallic, Oxford White and a new Raptor-exclusive hue for 2013, desert camouflage-inspired Terrain.
SVT Raptor prowess and power
Since launching as a 2010 model, the Ford F-150 SVT Raptor has set the benchmark for low- and high-speed off-road performance.
Aggressive all-terrain tires, industry-exclusive internal triple-bypass FOX Racing Shox™ dampers, skid plates and standard Hill Descent Control™ have established Raptor as an off-road force to be reckoned with.
Building on this foundation, SVT engineers expanded Raptor’s footprint for 2011 with a four-door SuperCrew model, joining the two-door SuperCab original.
A Raptor development imperative has been to continually improve off-road prowess in every dimension, from rock-crawling to hammer-down desert-running.
Last year, Ford began offering a front grille-mounted camera to improve driver visibility when climbing over rocks and other obstacles that might be obscured by the front of the truck. The camera transmits the captured image via the center stack-mounted LCD screen. A washer function helps keep the camera’s field of vision clear in wet and muddy conditions.
The 2012 model year saw Raptor add a Torsen® limited-slip differential to the 4WD system enabling the truck to balance traction between both front wheels. If the left front wheel loses traction, the system forces torque to the right front wheel, and vice versa. The system is optimized to help minimize steering kickback when navigating challenging surfaces.
The SVT Raptor is available exclusively with a 6.2-liter V8 engine, producing best-in-class 411 horsepower and 434 lb.-ft. of torque, mated to an electronic six-speed automatic transmission with tow/haul mode and SelectShift Automatic® functionality. The 4WD system features electronic shift-on-the-fly capability for the transfer case.
The front axle features the Torsen differential with 4.10 to 1 gearing. The rear axle is also 4.10 to 1, with an electronic-locking differential.
Read more: http://www.autoweek.com/article/20120626/carnews/120629862#ixzz1ywVgvW5o