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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

Hello: Cladded-up new Ford Ranger Raptor spied testing

Wraps are set to come off next month with more details expected soon.

Ahead of its eagerly awaited showing next month, the second generation Ford Ranger Raptor has showed itself via a series of spy images undergoing testing in Thailand.

Appearing production-ready despite the mild disguise, albeit in a different colour, previously used on the standard Ranger and more recently, in teaser images of the new Everest, the exterior enhancements are easy to make-out and in-line with those of the outgoing Raptor.

This includes the extended wheel arches with black plastic cladding, the powder coated side-steps, blacked-out alloy wheels wrapped in easy-to-spot all-terrain tyres, and the chunky rear bumper with integrated step.

Published by the Next Gen Ranger 2022 Society Facebook page, the images don’t show the front facia or interior, but based on the teaser image released last year, the Raptor will receive the now trademark block letter FORD grille as well as other model specific tweaks.

Up front, Ford has remained tight-lipped on powertrain details despite confirming availability of three units; revised versions of the outgoing Ranger’s 2.0-litre single and bi-turbodiesel Panther engines, the carryover 2.3 EcoBoost for North America and the 3.0-litre turbodiesel V6 previously marketed under the Powerstroke designation in the F-150.

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For the Raptor, Ford will adopt an approach similar to the outgoing Ranger by offering it, as well as the Wildtrak, with the top-spec engine. This means the mentioned V6 oil-burner in export markets models and a V6 EcoBoost in the States.

Based on speculative claims, the oil-burner is likely to produce the same 186kW/597Nm as it did in the F-150, while the EcoBoost is rumoured to be one of two units; the 231kW/540Nm 2.7-litre from the Bronco or the 298kW/563Nm twin-turbo 3.0-litre from the Explorer ST.

As reported earlier this month, Dearborn has also opened to the idea of a V8 version under the hardcore Raptor R nameplate, before denouncing the prospects of such a model being in development at present.

At the same time, the Raptor is reported to spawn an R version of the incoming all-new Volkswagen Amarok, which although teased and spied in standard form, has not emerged online or in any official Wolfsburg teaser material.

For now, nothing else continues to be known about the Raptor, but with its month of reveal getting closer, and judging by the imagery of the prototype, expect the Blue Oval to release more details very soon.

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