Speculation

Here's everything we know about the upcoming Ford F-150 Raptor R

Ford has confirmed that a more performance-focused version fo the Raptor is on its way.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

When Ford debuted the redesigned 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor today, the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker, the audience was stunned. There was no V8. They had thought there would be one. They were convinced. They were bragging about it to the world.

Was it a let down? Perhaps. But, Ford has a plan. It's name is the Ford F-150 Raptor R.

Ford was able to keep much of the new Raptor's information under wraps until the cover was pulled off on the model. What about the Raptor R? Let's dig in and find out what is and isn't known about the upcoming model.

It will have a V8.

A Ford spokesperson confirmed to Motor Authority that the new Raptor R will be powered by a V8. Naturally aspirated? Turbocharged? Supercharged? They weren't saying anything more, however, Ford rep Mike Levine tweeted an image later giving a clue.

Ford used Metallica's "Enter Sandman" music in promos for the new Raptor, but perhaps the focus on the album artwork here, depicting a snake, could be the subject Levine is alluding to.

In its handbag, Ford has a 760-horsepower supercharged 5.2-liter V8 that is found under the hood of its Mustang Shelby GT500. It would make sense that the company would be looking to put this engine in the Raptor R as the truck's closest competition, the Ram TRX, has a Hellcat-derived power plant that makes over 700 horsepower.

If Ford decides to go with the same engine as is in the Mustang GT500, the question becomes, "Will they mate it to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission or a 10-speed automatic ?" A 10-speed is standard on the 2021 F-150 Raptor.

It will be street legal.

Despite conflicting reports this morning, it has now been confirmed that the Raptor R will be street legal. This means that the truck will have the requisite lighting, signals, and safety equipment to meet government standards for roadworthiness. In other words, it's not a strict desert racing truck for sanctioned events. It will be a vehicle buyers will be able to get from their local dealership.

Expect performance upgrades and maybe a fiercer appearance.

The new Raptor already looks swell, but the Raptor R could look swole. Aside from the (likely) requisite V8 and Raptor R badging, the new model could get a more aggressive front end, perhaps with more skid plate showing. Maybe some colored tow hooks, a roof rack, a light bar, and blacked side mirrors caps? On the tailgate, perhaps a colored "Ford" that matches the tow hooks? They're just thoughts from the AutomotiveMap team, but certainly all a possibility.

The Raptor R won't be here this year.

As American author James Campbell once said, "We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us." The twin-turbo V6-powered 2021 Raptor will come first with the V8-engined Raptor R coming in 2022. Will it be a 2022 or 2023 model year vehicle? That remains unclear.

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Performance luxury SUV

The Cadillac Escalade-V starts at almost $150,000

The Escalade-V gets a $149,990 starting price

Cadillac

Cadillac teased an ultra-powerful Escalade-V a while back, and now we have all the details. The 2023 SUV will feature a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, plenty of luxury, and a stout six-figure price tag.

The 2023 Escalade-V comes with a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 that makes 682 horsepower and 653 pound-feet of torque. It features a hand-built design and shares much of its underlying engineering with the CT5-V Blackwing. It's paired with a ten-speed automatic transmission and full-time active four-wheel drive.

2023 Cadillac Escalade-VUnder the hood, there's a supercharged 6.2-liter V8.Cadillac

Cadillac gives every Escalade-V air ride adaptive suspension and magnetic ride control. The driver can customize the suspension and feel using the SUV's selectable driving modes. The system can also raise or lower the ride height by to .8 inches, and the SUV comes with a launch control system that helps it get off the line with explosive speed.

Inside, the Escalade-V builds on the top trim of the standard SUV with zebra wood accents, massaging front seats, and a heated steering wheel. It's got the same amazing tech, too, with a curved OLED display that runs the length of the dash, navigation, voice commands, wireless Apple Carplay and Android Auto, an augmented reality navigation system, and a 36-speaker AKG Studio stereo. Cadillac Super Cruise is available.

2023 Cadillac Escalade-VAn extended ESV variant is also available. Cadillac

The 2023 Cadillac Escalade-V goes on sale this summer. Starting pricing lands at $149,990, and Cadillac offers an extended-wheelbase ESV version of the high-performance SUV.

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Lincoln will not make a performance variant to compete with Cadillac.

Lincoln

TheLincoln Navigator and Cadillac Escalade have been duking it out at the top of luxury SUV rankings for decades, but there’s one area of the Caddy’s development that Lincoln won’t touch. In a recent interview, a company executive told Ford Authority that it has no plans to create a performance variant of the Navigator to compete with the upcoming Escalade V from Cadillac.

2022 Lincoln NavigatorThe new Navigator features several upscale touches and excellent tech. Lincoln

That means the Navigator will stick with the powertrain it’s carried for years, which is a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine that makes 440 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with a smooth ten-speed automatic and either rear- or four-wheel drive. While there’s more than enough power to get the hulking Lincoln moving, it’s not a powertrain that inspires excitement or engagement, and though beefy, it’s tuned much more for comfort and quietness than drama.

Though more than adequate, those specs are a far cry from the numbers we expect from the Escalade V. The full-size bruiser from Cadillac is expected to get a supercharged 6.2-liter V8, similar to the unit seen in the CT5-V Blackwing and Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. We don’t know power numbers yet, but the engine should deliver horsepower and torque numbers in the high 600s.

Cadillac Escalade VThe Escalade V will be massively powerful. Cadillac

That Lincoln is taking a different approach isn’t surprising. The automaker has already announced its intention to go all-electric, so pouring more time and resources into creating a performance gas-powered SUV isn’t in line with its goals. Company executives have also expressed a desire to avoid imitating rivals, so the decision to leave a performance Navigator behind is not surprising.

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