Sure, trucks are great for towing stuff and going off-road. But one feature we don’t often hear about is how fast some pickups can go, like the 2018 Ford F-150 Raptor. This screamer of a utility vehicle has under the hood a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine rated at 450 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque, which will get it from 0 to 60 mph in a tick over five seconds. And of course, it can do all that other stuff too and more with beefed up suspension, different driving dynamics modes, and more that we explore in the list below.
Of the current generation model introduced two years ago, Ford says simply, “The all-new 2017 F-150 Raptor is the toughest, smartest, most capable Raptor ever, and re-defines what it means to be the only purpose-built, high-performance off-road truck — all with a base MSRP under $50,000.” It’s no exaggeration, as mentioned above there’s a serious motor lurking under the hood. Engineers also managed to slough off 500 pounds of weight compared to the outgoing offering by using large amounts of aluminum further increasing its get-up-and-go.
The whole package rides on girthy FOX shocks three-inches in diameter, boasting nine-stage bypass damping and integrated hydraulic bump stops. What does that mean in plain English? Traversing rough terrain is no problem thanks to the hardware designed to minimize bottoming-out and overheating. In addition, 13-inch front and 13.9-inch rear suspension travel mean there’s not much that can’t be climbed over. The Terrain Management System allows users to tailor the four-wheel drive to different environments including Mud and Sand and Rock Crawl.
Chevy’s “Like a Rock” Silverado underwent a face lift in 2016, emerging with a new sculpted hood and longer and thinner headlamp assemblies seamlessly integrated into the front grill. On the other side, the taillights wraparound the corners of the rear fenders for a streamlined appearance. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay were introduced allowing easy integration between smartphone and vehicle. Three different motors propel the 1500: the largest being a 6.2-liter V8 with a serious output of 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque, as well as a 12,000-pound maximum tow capacity, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Winner of back-to-back Motor Trend Truck of the Year awards, the fourth-gen RAM 1500 is the total package. Not only does it have muscular and aerodynamic styling contributing to a wind-cheating low 0.36 coefficient of drag, but there are no less than 11 paint colors to choose from such as Black Forest Green, Blue Streak, and Granite Crystal, many of which are available in two-tone combinations. The gem of the powertrain lineup is the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox, pumping out 395 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque. Other offered engines are a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 and a 3.0-liter EcoDiesel, the latter rated at an estimated 28 MPG fuel economy.