2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R: Wow. Wow!

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I can't understate how much fun this auto journalism gig is. It's a lot of fun most of the time. However, sometimes you fall into a river of crossover after crossover, which can get boring. So, I was excited when I saw the “2023 Ford Raptor” on my delivery schedule as I had never had a chance to review a Raptor before. However, as the truck turned the corner, I saw a red “R” on the grille, and my excitement level skyrocketed. The 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R has a supercharged 5.2-liter V-8 that makes 700 horsepower (720 horsepower for 2024), which is quite a jump from the 2023 Raptor's 450 standard horsepower.

So, how did Rapto happenR act as a daily driver and road trip hero? I think you can tell the enthusiastic use of the word “wow” in the title, well done. But does it live up to the number six figure?


Is that an…R?

What is the 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R?

Check out our first drive for more, but it's basically a Raptor with a bigger engine, upgraded suspension (even higher) and some bigger tires. The engine and exhaust combo sounds amazing, check out the first cold video below. The Active Valve Exhaust System means you can go from quiet quiet mode in your neighborhood to wide open throttle on the highway where other drivers will think the world is ending. It's amazing, here check it out.

@williambyrdusa Reviewing the Ford Raptor R this week, sounds amazing. #Ford #FordRaptor #FordRaptorR ♬ original sound – William Byrd

For the 2024 model year, check the box for the Raptor's 5.8-liter engine and the MSRP jumps to about $32,000. In addition to the supercharged V-8, the R removes the The Raptor 801A also adds a The Raptor R 803A package, which includes:

  • 37×12.5R17 BSW All-Terrain Tires (A/T)
  • Dual Valve Shocks
  • Modular front bumper
  • Black Alcantara Suede and Leather RECARO Seats
  • Raptor R exterior theme
  • Raptor R interior theme
  • Code Orange Tow Hooks
  • Raptor R Exterior Graphics
  • Raptor R Unique Hood Vent with “R” badge
  • Raptor R Unique Grille
  • Raptor R Unique 17” Forged Aluminum Bead-Lock Power Wheels
  • Raptor “R” badge on Tailgate Appliqué
  • Removes Pro Power Onboard – 2KW
  • Unique Carbon Fiber Appliqués
  • Code Orange Stitching on Doors and Instrument Panel
  • Internal Code Orange Raptor R Badging

Your total premium for Raptor R ownership will be a negligible $112,895 in 2024 (including variable costs). And wow.

How is it around town?

However, like most large trucks, it is surprisingly comfortable. I guess we shouldn't be surprised anymore, trucks are generally comfortable. However, the fact that something with a 700-horsepower engine built for high-speed desert racing can be this nimble around town is pretty amazing. Keep things in normal driving modes, and the Raptor R can just about lay down town like any other F-150. No drama, it's big and comfortable, and when it's time to jump over the curb to get around slow-moving parents during school pick-up (queue supervisors approved), it's obviously, well-equipped. to handle it.

Not surprisingly, the big engine and big tires mean the R is dry. Not “dry” “very eager to get something; I'm desperate.” way (thanks Urban Dictionary) but in the form of MPG. The Raptor R's EPA-estimated fuel economy is 12 MPG combined (10/15 city highway), which is pretty bad. But, it's 1 MPG better than the Ram TRX, so it can do it. Still, if you're good with trips to the pump (slightly reduced by a large gas tank) the MPG rating is one of the only negatives in the daily driver's job.

The only problem is the size. It's one of those cars that I've had to use a grab bar and side step to get into. The Raptor R is 232.6 inches long, 80.6 inches tall and 96 inches wide (with mirrors). In other words, that's 19.4 feet long and 8 feet wide! That's also 7 inches longer than the Suburban, which means you have to plan your parking accordingly. I spend a lot of time driving around town, and one photo (top left) was the last street parking spot I found the next morning. The main garage length was too narrow to handle the R's large height, so I had to go in there. Fortunately the standard 360-degree camera system can help you navigate your R into tight spots with ease. The funny thing is that when you are at a stoplight you can't even tell what kind of car is behind you, you usually see a small roof like that.

Does the interior fit a six figure car?

The 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R feels mostly like a higher trim F-150 inside. It's big and well laid out. I really like where the wireless phone charger is placed (although it didn't always click) but there is a slot next to it that you can put your phone in, so it can sit vertically or horizontally and use the wired charging option. There are also plenty of cubbies and storage for small and large items while on the go. The interior is so large and open that you can find someone reading in the back with the light on and not see. The rear seats are also heated which comes in handy on a few chilly mornings.

Would I say that it's well appointed as a car of a comparable price? No, you wouldn't consider all the interior items premium, although there are decent items. The leather upholstery is solid, and the 10-seat driver's seat was comfortable. However, for the price there is no massaging seat option that you can find in less expensive Ford cars. So, you'll need to keep in mind that this six-figure truck has a lot of engineering underneath to help justify that price. All-in-all it's comfortable and well equipped and most buyers will be satisfied enough with the interior.

How about a road trip?

One weekend I collected R and went to visit my relatives. It was very comfortable on long roads. Just be prepared for the cost of fuel, as I said before. As with the Lighting I just reviewed, the shift lever sits at about the same height as the center console, which allowed me to rest my arm comfortably on long drives. I can also put my left foot up on the lip of the driver's door storage area to sit in a slightly different position. The active exhaust works very well and can be very quiet on the highway on long trips. Probably the best combination of quietness and noise I've seen since the 392 Jeep Wrangler.

How is it off road?

Absolutely epic, of course. During the first drive, Publisher Tim Esterdahl managed to get the R into some very interesting places, but I was able to find places to kick dirt. The different terrain types are great fun and include Normal, Sport, Tow/Haul, Slippery, Off-Road, Baja and Rock Crawl. I chose Baja Mode for the loose dirt and sand trails I found, and it was an absolute blast. The long wheelbase means that some hard, rocky technical trails can be a challenge, but the Raptor R is a lot of fun on pavement and loose surfaces.

An important point

Interestingly, the Ford F150 is probably the most common car on the road in the United States. After a week of driving this, they start thinking of you as their King. If you're short of crossing the TRX, you'll be at the top of the truck food chain. I was so impressed with this truck that I stopped by the dealership to look at the regular Raptor (I also photographed the Raptor R and Bronco Raptor shown above). Obviously, I'd like to take a shot at owning a Raptor R, but that price tag is pretty steep. However, if you can afford it, I would say that the price of admission is well worth it.

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