There possibly isn’t a Suspension Deep Dive automobile I have actually expected greater than the 2021 Ford F-150 Raptor. I often tend to claim that every time I obtain my hands on a brand new automobile. It held true prior to I laid hands on the 2022 Ford Bronco I took a look at lately, as well as I had the very same idea when the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX paid a check out concerning a year earlier.
Yet this really feels various for a handful of factors. For one, the brand-new third-generation has a five-link coil-spring back suspension, which’s something not shown any type of various other F-150 or anything in the substantial F-Series schedule. This was a ground-up layout with the high-flying Raptor in mind. This makes it various from the five-link coil-spring back suspension on the Ram 1500 TRX, which is an alteration of existing Ram 2500 Power Wagon web link geometry– albeit with much better shocks as well as various other considerable tweaks.
Not just that, the Raptor’s brand-new supports actually function. I had the ability to definitely wring a number of various Raptors by the neck (the requirement 35- inch tire variation as well as the brand-new 37- inch variation) throughout my First Drive at Dumont Dunes, a vast off-highway automobile (OHV) entertainment location in The golden state’s Mojave Desert. Ever since, I have actually likewise driven the 37- inch-shod vehicle you will see on acquainted, poorly-maintained roadways near house in Orange Region, Calif. This brand-new Raptor is not simply an ass-kicker when driven hard outdoors desert, it’s likewise an entirely habitable daily-driver.
The primary factor for the third-gen Raptor’s newly found deepness as well as breadth of suspension efficiency remains in truth that wonderful five-link coil back suspension. Ford has actually likewise fitted Fox interior bypass Live-Valve flexible dampers as well as maximized them for the brand-new suspension. Since I have actually driven it, it’s time to draw the wheels off for a closer appearance I have actually simply been passing away to take.
Like the Raptor prior to it, this third-gen Raptor trips on a wide-track dual wishbone front suspension, however there are countless alterations that have actually raised optimum wheel traveling from 13 inches to 14 inches.
Routine F-150 s, like the 2021 XLT 4×4 I took a look at in 2015, are constructed with a lot less track size as well as give dramatically much less traveling. That vehicle had actually bonded steel top as well as reduced wishbones, however right here we can plainly see the top wishbone (yellow arrowhead) is built steel as well as the reduced wishbone (eco-friendly) is constructed from light weight aluminum.
This year’s Raptor utilizes a brand-new generation of Fox interior bypass coil-over shocks (yellow) that are, to name a few points, enabled to expand longer than previously. One more traveling enhancement originates from the improved as well as reoriented axis of the top sphere joint that currently permits even more angularity as the guiding knuckle is transformed through its complete variety of activity.
Listed below, the reduced shock add-on (eco-friendly) is a big double-shear through-bolt. This resembles the last Raptor, however fairly various from the normal F-150, which utilizes a tie-bar held to the leading surface area of the reduced wishbone with 2 smaller sized screws.
The Raptor’s light weight aluminum reduced wishbone is reinforced by an incorporated crossmember (yellow) that covers in between its 2 legs. Additional outboard, the reduced wishbone as well as the guiding knuckle function noticeable nubs (eco-friendly) that interact to work as a guiding quit.
Higher, the Raptor utilizes the brand-new, normal F-150’s electrically activated, vacuum-operated Electric Integrated Wheel End (EIWE) to secure as well as open the front centers as you switch over in as well as out of 4×4. These vary from the older IWE layout, because the electrical actuation occurs right here at the center utilizing a control cable (red) that’s simply listed below the vacuum cleaner line.
Right here we can see exactly how the guiding quits on the reduced wishbone as well as guiding knuckle engage as the guiding methods complete lock. We’re not fairly at complete ideal secure this image, however we’re obtaining near to the factor where they’ll touch.
As in the normal F-150, the Raptor’s reduced wishbone add-on factors (yellow) do not have the eccentric webcams we’re utilized to seeing. They claim the production procedure is so called because they do not require to integrate in change, however I’m denying that. We can see a witness mark where the nearer one either slid or a person utilized the offered hole-slop to make a small change.
The Fox shocks create a base degree of damping within the text of the shock, with interior bypass openings we can not see along its size to provide the damper placement level of sensitivity. The damper is consequently soft in the center however tenses up as the piston approaches the compression or expansion extremes of traveling. Layered in addition to that is this computer-controlled online shutoff (yellow), which includes extra damping relying on problems. This year’s variation has an example price that’s 10 times quicker, so the system is a great deal a lot more receptive to roadway problems in genuine time.
Over right we can see the top wishbone, however there’s a great deal a lot more taking place than you could believe. Currently, instead of making you open one more web browser home window as well as discover the comparable picture I took of the 2021 F-140 XLT 4×4 a couple of months back, right here’s 2 variations side-by-side (without the message connected with that photo, neglect its yellow arrowhead)
The crown of the top shock (yellow) install is * a lot * taller than a normal F-150’s, as well as the upright tensing internet (eco-friendly) expand a lot reduced down on the framework. This was done since the Raptor’s shocks are a fair bit much longer, as well as this top install needs to be significantly more powerful.
Shed amongst all this is the elevation sensing unit (red) that tracks the suspension’s placement regularly as well as feeds it right into the Live-Valve flexible damping computer system.
Inside, the front bump quit (yellow) appears to see. This is especially lengthy to the factor where it requires a tensing ring, since Raptors shod with 37- inch tires obtain longer bump quits to limit the front traveling to 13 inches. The 35- inch variation ought to have a much shorter quit that makes it possible for the complete 14 inches of traveling. The limitation is required since the huge 37- inch tires would certainly or else pack themselves as well much up right into the fender wells, as well as the threat of massaging is specifically intense when the wheels are transformed at the very same time.
Unlike the normal F-150, the Raptor’s stabilizer bar web link (yellow) still affixes to the reduced wishbone. It’s a clean installment, as well as the stabilizer bar pivot bushing (eco-friendly) is nearby. What’s not offered right here is the sort of stabilizer bar separate device that Ford simply presented on the brand-new Bronco. The Raptor can utilize the alternative, I believe, since the front tires do not press all that much heading to a Flex Index rating of simply537 Obviously that’s this 37- inch vehicle. A Raptor shod with the requirement 35- inch rubber as well as consequently even more traveling could do much better if the stabilizer bar isn’t the restricting variable. That understands? Possibly the separate device is being kept in get for the Raptor R.
The different activity proportions are less complicated to see from the rear end, although this tilted sight filths points up a little bit. The stabilizer bar affiliation affixes concerning 45% out of the internal pivot, so we’ll call it 0.45- to-1. The coil-over springtime as well as damper connect something like 75% of the means out. There is a little bit of lean to the damper, as well as it will just raise as the suspension presses. A cosine variable of 0 if we claim it is laying at 25 levels from upright.91 enters play. That brings what in the beginning felt like 0.75- to-1 to 0.68- to-1. Or thereabouts. As ever before, these are eyeball price quotes.
The Raptor utilizes twin-piston (yellow) moving calipers. These are so called since the twin pistons press on one side, however the caliper real estate they are placed within can move openly on pins (eco-friendly). This way, the used pressure on one side draws the caliper’s much side towards the blades, such that the pressures remain in equilibrium as well as both sides produce the very same securing pressure. Ford has actually placed in useful assessment home windows (red) so you can conveniently see the pad/rotor user interface as well as examine pad density at a look.
Look ma! No fallen leave springtimes. There’s a large honking coil springtime.
Five-link back suspensions have 2 routing web links (yellow) per side, as well as these are favorably substantial. I gauged the reduced one as well as discovered it to be simply over 3 feet long. The top one is the house of the back suspension placement sensing unit (red) for the Live-Valve flexible dampers. Higher, we can see exactly how the top shock install (eco-friendly) is an extremely husky projection sticking out off the framework.
This arrangement benefits optimum wheel traveling of 15 inches, an inch much better than previously.
The coil itself has to do with 2 feet long out of the vehicle, however it’s rather smaller sized currently. A jack stand is sustaining the axle, so we’re seeing it pressed a little bit greater than it would certainly be if the vehicle got on the ground. Still, the top coils remain in bind, since this is a dual-rate dynamic springtime. Those coils open at complete droop, which assists make preliminary interaction a little bit a lot more progressive as you land a dive prior to they tense up as you come close to mid traveling.
The upside down back shocks have piggyback-style (yellow) remote storage tanks on top. There’s a separating piston in the tank, with additional oil that moves openly in as well as out of the primary shock body over that piston, as well as nitrogen gas listed below that pressurizes the whole shock to maintain the oil from cavitating as it presses with the extremely small flows that comprise the different damping shutoff aspects. Among those is a computer system managed valve-stack inside the Live-Valve (eco-friendly) that piggybacks off the piggyback.
The front shocks have a separating piston as well as concentration camp, as well, however they’re smaller sized as well as in-line with the shock listed below the side-mounted online shutoff. No additional oil tank capability up there.
The reduced shock install screws to a brace (yellow) that hangs under the axle tube, however so does the reduced springtime seat. What this indicates is that alternating springtime seats can merely be bolted on. I am relatively specific (however do not price quote be on this) that the 35- inch Raptor utilizes various springtime seats. The Raptor R might certainly go its very own means right here, as well. This likewise indicates that an aftermarket suspension manufacturer can think up their very own springtime seats, which opens opportunities that are not conveniently offered on the TRX, where the springtimes merely stick down atop the axle.
Lots taking place right here. Note that the Panhard bar’s axle-end installing factor (yellow) is placed rather much inboard as it attempts to remain clear of the springtime, reduced routing arm braces as well as the bump quit (eco-friendly), which signs up on top of the axle tube itself. The steel base of the bump quit real estate protrudes downward a lot more on this vehicle than it would certainly in a 35- inch Raptor, since the back side of 37- inch-shod Raptors should likewise cut an inch off their traveling to stop the fender wells from being overstuffed.
The springtime as well as shock install is bonded straight to the axle tube, so their activity proportions are 1-to-1 when the suspension is going up as well as down together or in-phase. That adjustments in roll also known as contrary stage, where the suspension can be claimed to pivot around the facility of the differential real estate. Because instance the spring/shock roll activity proportion has to do with 0.75- to one based upon the place of the installing brace about the tire’s get in touch with spot, as we saw in the swan song. The substantial shock is angled onward fairly a little bit, so allow’s take one more 10% off the small 0.75- to-1 roll as well as 1.0-to-1 bounce damper activity proportions, that makes them 0.68 as well as 0.90, specifically.
The axle bump quit isn’t the only one on this vehicle. There’s one more on the shock absorber, as well as it is simply noticeable inside the rock guard.
The inset axle-end installing brace we saw prior to bring about a Panhard pole (red) that’s much shorter than I such as to see. With as long as 15 inches of upright traveling, we could see some noticeable left-right axle translation as this shortish bar swings with its arc.
Likewise of note is the axle rest tube (yellow) that ranges from right here as much as a factor near the left-rear shock’s top install. Completion includes a 90- level installation that in fact ends a little bit more than the lower surface area of the bed. Close by there’s a control cable (eco-friendly) for the online lockable back differential.
It is certainly a limited fit with a 37- inch extra tire back right here, a lot to ensure that the Panhard bar is pressed level in the center (yellow) for a little additional breathing space.
The back brakes are comprised of aerated blades as well as single-piston moving calipers with electrically-driven emergency brake actuators (yellow) placed to the back.
The 37- inch wheels are beadlock-capable edges, however what you’re seeing is a non-functional trim ring (yellow) that does not in fact overlap the edge’s lip to give any type of grain securing. The useful beadlock rings that do that are a device, as well as you have actually reached loosen all 24 Torx screws you see right here, times 4 (or 5) wheels, to make the button. The screw openings do not permeate the edge’s air dental caries, so there’s no opportunity of any type of leakages.
These substantial 37 x125 R17 LT BF Goodrich All Surface T/A KO2 tires as well as their 17 x 8.5-inch edges with artificial beadlock rings (as well as genuine beadlock screws) evaluate a cool 101.5 extra pounds. Bark.
A lot more after the video clip …
I do not understand about you, however I’m not dissatisfied by what Ford has actually done right here, specifically since this brand-new back suspension is plainly a Raptor-optimized layout that had not been obtained from one more F-Series. As well as it functions splendidly, with the exception of one location: my RTI ramp. Yes, the 37- inch-shod Raptor has actually had 1 inch cut from its optimum traveling possibility for clearance factors. That still places it at 13 inches front as well as 14 inches back, like the Ram 1500 TRX. Why did it rack up simply 537 contrasted to the Ram’s 602 factors? I’m not yet certain.
Yet allow’s zoom out a min. The Ram 1500 TRX as well as Ford F-150 Raptor are not bound for boulder-hopping experiences on the Rubicon Path. They’re perhaps much as well vast for anything like that, as well as their primary factor for being is high-speed desert running. Would certainly I such as to see even more expression right here? Certain. Is it a deal-breaker? Not, since the brand-new Raptor can definitely carry the mail in the wide-open desert setting it was made for. Yeah. I’ll still have a look at the 35- inch shod Raptor with 14 inches of front as well as 15 inches of back traveling. If they all of a sudden made a Raptor variation of the Bronco’s stabilizer bar separate device, as well as I would certainly not whine.
Adding author Dan Edmunds is an expert automobile designer as well as reporter. He functioned as a car growth designer for Toyota as well as Hyundai with a focus on framework adjusting, as well as was the supervisor of automobile screening at Edmunds.com (no connection) for 14 years.
You can discover every one of his Suspension Deep Dives right here on Autoblog.