The Next Generation Ford SVT Truck Is No Dinosaur

October 9, 2009
2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

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The last generation of Ford Special Vehicle Team trucks was the Ford F-150 Lightning series and they were something, especially for the time. However since the last year, 2004, we haven’t seen anything come out of the SVT unit as far as the truck line—that is until now. Let me introduce the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of test-driving the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor and in the glowing Molten Orange to boot. Now, at first glance this is a very appealing truck, it has the graphics package and the high stance of a 4x4 truck. It also has a 320 horsepower and 390 ft.-lb of torque 5.4-liter Triton V8 and an exhaust system that reflects back to the sound of big blocks from yesteryear.

2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

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The 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor comes in at a base MSRP of $38,995, but you can option it out to $46,020 like the Raptor I drove yesterday. Sounds good so far? The Raptor is no old Dinosaur, but it isn’t quite what you might expect from the SVT unit. The Raptor has a specialty tuned suspension design by Fox, Off-Road Mode, Factory-Installed Integrated Trailer Brake Controller, Sony Navigation, Review Camera and more. It is probably the most technologically advance off-road vehicle Ford has offered to the American buying public.

2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor

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The Raptor definitely has the look, but there are a couple things that gave me pause once I set out behind the wheel. Now the orange and black optional interior is cool, but would take some getting used to. Overall, the layout of the controls is good and the visibility for an extended cab pick-up is not bad. The truck has good road feel, power and definitely has the look. The thing that kept coming up in my mind is that it didn’t feel like a SVT vehicle. It doesn’t have the snap-your-neck power that we have come to expect, but I am told that may be remedied with a larger and more powerful engine next year.

Bottom line—the 2010 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor is being marketed as a purpose-built, high performance 4WD off-road truck. Ford doesn’t lie, this is probably the only factory built truck that can take off-road jumps and has custom Ford SVT-tuned BFGoodrich 35” All-Terrain tires. The real question is, for $46K and a range of 14-18 mpg, does this truck make sense for anything but off-road driving.

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