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2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed

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2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed

We’ve written about the relationship between Texans and our trucks before on this site and why this is such a big state for the truck and SUV market. The open country, the need to haul a trailer, and simply the internal needs for wanting to go big or go home all figure into the equation. When it comes to Ford’s new super-truck, the F-150 SVT Raptor, there has already been plenty said and written about it as it’s been out for a few years now. Border agents along the Texas border were even some of the first to put in an order for some. So as you read this, and if you live in Texas, the answer to your inevitable question is yes. Yes, if you have the means to buy one, buy it!

We’ve written about the relationship between Texans and our trucks before on this site and why this is such a big state for the truck and SUV market. The open country, the need to haul a trailer, and simply the internal needs for wanting to go big or go home all figure into the equation. When it comes to Ford’s new super-truck, the F-150 SVT Raptor, there has already been plenty said and written about it as it’s been out for a few years now. Border agents along the Texas border were even some of the first to put in an order for some. So as you read this, and if you live in Texas, the answer to your inevitable question is yes. Yes, if you have the means to buy one, buy it!

Size: Because it’s all about Size…

2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

When the Raptor was introduced, it came in SuperCab configuration only. This means 2 doors with a small extended area in the rear. For the 2011 model year, Ford broke out with a SuperCrew variant stretching the Raptor and including another set of full doors. This move has been met with some scrutiny as this is a performance truck and adding size and weight doesn’t help with it’s performance. How much size and weight? Well the Raptor is already bigger than the average F-150 and even wider than a Hummer H1, but adding the second set of doors to the Raptor meant stretching it by a foot. The fuel tank capacity was increased by 10 gallons adding up to a total of a 36 gallon tank. Adding all this extra size to the already massive truck tipped the scales up by 300 pounds.

Engine: Because power solves all problems…

The extra size and weight in the 2011 Raptor we tested went basically unnoticed. This was helped by the new 6.2 liter V8 pushing 411 horsepower and 434 ft-lbs of torque; which is now standard on all Raptors. This mass is cialis professional no prescription matched up with a 6-speed automatic transmission that provides full manual control via buttons on the shifter itself. Shifting this big truck in manual mode isn’t that easy with the small buttons on the shifter, but when you get used to it, you notice that the transmission wont shift up automatically on you and will allow downshifting at any speed. All this put together makes for a pretty quick truck, which is a weird sensation in such a big vehicle. Even with the big engine the Raptor can only tow up to 8,000 lbs as it’s let down by it’s off-roading suspension.

2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

Inside: Because it’s Texas and you want to be comfortable while off-roading…

Obviously, the upside to the extra size and weight is it’s added room and roominess. The additional room at every seat in this truck cannot easily be described as I’ve never seen this much leg-room in a backseat! No matter where you ride in this truck, you get lots of room and comfortable, leather covered seats. One thing that bugs me with a lot of big off-roading trucks or SUVs that we test is the switches and buttons. When manufacturers create a big vehicle, they seem to have a need to make the dash full of over-sized buttons and knobs. In the Raptor, you get the basic F-150 dash layout, and it looks great. You get a few extras including an auxiliary switchboard in front of the shifter. The idea of this switchboard is to make aftermarket customization easier with prewired switches attached to the power distribution box for electrical accessories, say big off-roading lights for example. Also equipped within the speedo is a 4.2” LCD screen that provides the driver with lots of useful information. Just don’t leave this screen on fuel economy as it’ll make you want to drive off a bridge. Our Raptor was also equipped with another LCD screen in the middle of the dash with Ford’s SYNC system and and navigation.

2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

Ride: Because it’s not always about off-roading…

Ford knew when building the Raptor that this would be an everyday driving truck as well as overly capable off-road truck. Squishy, off-roading suspension makes highway cruising smooth and easy. Moving between lanes and overtaking is easy as well thanks to the rigid chassis and powerful engine. To make the stretched chassis behave the way it’s supposed to behave, Ford tightened the steering ratio and stiffened the spring rates.

Off-Road: Because I wanna jump this thing in my backyard…

We’ve all seen the shots of the first generation Raptor jumping hills and making spectacular landings. There has been some controversy about the capability of the frame for off-roading and jumping, but last we’ve heard, nothing has came of it. What we do know is that this thing glides off-road with ease. There is nothing quite like mashing your foot to the floor pushing that 434 ft-lbs of torque to the rear wheels, creating rooster-tails of dirt and dust, and shooting across a country field. The temptation is so intoxicating that you don’t even want to wait to get to an open field. You have to constantly fight your subconsciousness to not drive right off the side of the road, or drop a few tires off into the ditch. You know this truck can handle it with ease.

2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

Price: Because a bigger truck deserves a bigger price-tag…

This isn’t the most expensive F-150 in Ford’s stable, but it’s close. A base price of $45,290 is a lot for an off-roading toy, but this is really an everyday truck that’s incredibly capable off-road. The base price of the truck is just the first expense, the next big expense never stops. Filling the Raptor up with fuel, premium only, can become a mind boggling experience. We’ve tested high performance sports-cars here on txGarage that got bad gas mileage, but the Raptor takes the crown. Let’s just say that we struggled to stay around 12 mpg even with normal driving.

I still stand by my statement that if you have the means, this is the truck you want. There is really nothing out there that competes with the Raptor. Although Chevrolet and Dodge have both flirted with the idea of Raptor competition, neither have pulled the trigger, yet. The Raptor has caught on for sure. Ford’s last SVT truck offering was the Lighting and Ford has already stated that the Raptor’s annual sales rate nearly double that of the Lighting when it was launched.

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2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage2011 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor reviewed by txGarage

Toby

Toby is the definition of a Texas car guy. He built out his own 5.0 Mustang while in high school and has a passion for Mustangs ever since. If Toby's reviews make him sound like a gear head that likes to go fast everywhere, well then he did his job.

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