The Ford Ranger Raptor sold overseas is nearly unstoppable off-road, but its four-cylinder turbodiesel engine makes it slow in a straight line. The Blue Oval's Australian division enlisted the help of an engineering firm to stuff the Mustang's V8 between the truck's punched-out front fenders.
Australian magazine Wheels learned the mysterious engineering firm in charge of the project will receive finished trucks from the Thai factory that supplies the Asia-Pacific market. It will then yank out the four-cylinder and prepare the engine bay to receive the naturally-aspirated, 5.0-liter V8 normally found in the Mustang. The eight-cylinder makes 460 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque in its standard configuration, and its output shouldn't be too different when shoehorned in the Ranger. The truck will remain four-wheel drive, but transmission options haven't been revealed yet.
To add context, the standard Ranger Raptor receives a 2.0-liter turbodiesel that delivers 213 horsepower and 368 pound-feet of torque. The F-150 Raptor downsized to a twin-turbocharged, 3.5-liter V6 with 450 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. In other words, the Aussies are secretly building Ford's most powerful truck, and they're planning to keep it for themselves.
We don't know what changes need to be made to the Ranger's engine bay in order to fit a big V8 in it. Similarly, whether the model will stand out with any visual changes is up in the air. What's certain is that it will command a not-insignificant price premium over the standard Raptor, which starts at about 85,000 Australian dollars, or approximately $60,000 U.S. It will be sold through Ford dealers, however, and it will benefit from the same warranty as the truck it's based on.
Ford hasn't commented on the report. If it's accurate, expect an official announcement in the coming months. The turbodiesel-powered Ranger Raptor isn't sold in the United States, where the F-150 reigns supreme, so don't expect to see a V8-powered model join the firm's American range. But now that we know the Mustang's V8 fits, you know exactly where to start to build a replica.