Ford Ranger Raptor long-term test: report 3

In theory it's a lean, mean working machine, but we're living with the ultimate version of Ford's Ranger pick-up truck to see if it lives up to the hype...

Ford Ranger Raptor with Max camping

The car Ford Ranger Raptor 2.0 EcoBlue 210 4WD auto | Run by Max Edleston, senior photographer

Why it’s here To provide grin-inducing entertainment and practicality in equal measure

Needs to be Unstoppable on-road or off-it, reasonably sensible to run, and practical enough to be used as a working vehicle

Mileage 5972 List price £57,064 Target Price £46,470 Price as tested £59,824 Test economy 25.5mpg Official economy 26.6mpg

7 May 2024 – Call of the wild

If you’re a regular reader of outdoorsy magazines, then you’ll be used to seeing pictures of happy campers who’ve been able to take in the beauty of nature by pitching their tent wherever their vehicle could take them. And while the rolling fields of Cheshire don’t quite compare with the Lake District or Scottish moors, I wanted to see if my Ford Ranger Raptor could take me on a bit of a holiday.

My partner needed some convincing, but once I’d explained that my Raptor was large enough to take all of our home comforts along for the journey, tough enough to take us to the kind of views you’d usually see on a postcard, and fun enough to make the journey feel like part of the holiday itself, she agreed to come along. I also promised we’d fit in a back-breaking hike – her favourite outdoors activity.

Ford Ranger Raptor with Max cooking

Having replaced tripods with tent poles in the load bed of my Raptor, alongside a camping bed, camping chairs, a gas stove and bottle, plus the essential food and drink, we were ready to get going.

Opting for ‘wild’ camping meant that we weren’t confined to traditional campsites, but I’ve learned from bitter experience that you can’t turn up anywhere and call it a night – luckily, a friend owns a farm in a particularly stunning part of Cheshire, and agreed to let us pitch up in one of his fields.

I’ve noted in previous reports that while the 2.0-litre diesel engine in my Raptor doesn’t have the same pulling power as the 3.0-litre V6 petrol alternative, it never feels short of breath, and its fuel economy is tolerable rather than ruinous. On the motorway my car felt as fast as ever – even loaded to the gunwales with luggage – and once we switched to country roads I enjoyed threading this mighty pick-up through corners. The Raptor’s steering is hefty, but it’s always accurate, which means I don’t have to adjust it mid-corner. My partner was happy that the Raptor’s taught body control didn’t cause her to spill her coffee, too.

I made use of the Raptor’s three-pin plug in the load bed on the journey, using it to power a small refrigerator which contained our sausage dinner. It’s a shame that the plug doesn’t draw power when the Raptor’s engine isn’t running, but it kept everything chilled on the trip to our destination.

Ford Ranger Raptor with socket

Our designated field was accessed down a typically rutted farmer’s track, which the Raptor took in its stride once I’d switched it from two to four-wheel drive. I was grateful for the plethora of cameras on my car, which allowed me to watch for low-hanging branches or especially sharp rocks which might leave their mark on my car’s paintwork.

Once in position next to a cheery overlook, I set about cooking dinner, using the Raptor’s tailgate as a makeshift countertop while my partner set the camp up. And early the next morning I made good on my promise by joining her on a sunrise hike through the countryside. We underestimated the dawn temperatures, however – which meant we were both grateful for the Raptor’s heated seats when we returned to camp.

For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here

Read more about our long-term Ford Ranger Raptor >>

Read about more long-term test cars >>

Buy a new car with What Car?

Like the sound of the Ford Ranger?

If so, check out the latest Ford Ranger deals available through our free New Car Deals service.

Our network of What Car? approved dealers use our Target Price discounts (the most our mystery shoppers think you should pay) as the basis for their savings.

Also consider