Ford is no stranger to churning out impressive rally machines capable of blasting across various types of surfaces at high speed, a list that includes models such as the Fiesta and Focus, not to mention its current WRC weapon of choice – the Puma Hybrid Rally1. Even though it isn’t really the same type of vehicle at all, the highly-regraded Ford Bronco Raptor was built to tackle the desert and other types of non-paved surfaces at high speed as well, and its twin-turbocharged Ford 3.0L EcoBoost V6 and high-tech suspension are well-suited for that type of task. Thus, the folks behind the YouTube channel Team O’Neill decided to subject the SUV to a different sort of test to see if it is indeed a capable rally machine.
Following a bit of a shakedown run on its own skidpad and slalom areas, the idea here is to take the Ford Bronco Raptor out to a properly mountainous rally stage to answer the question that we presume no one was asking – will the high-performance off-road SUV rally? On the road and at slow speeds off the pavement, the Bronco Raptor certainly impresses our host, providing a cushy and quiet ride for such a capable machine.
However, with the real test yet to come, our host puts the Ford Bronco Raptor in Sport mode and two-wheel drive with traction control and stability control turned off. Right off the bat, he notes that the big SUV manages to maintain solid speeds around the gravel-covered corners, though he does wish it had a handbrake for such endeavors. However, it rotates with high precision for such a heavy vehicle, regardless.
Ultimately, our host says the Ford Bronco Raptor “feels like a race truck,” which is high praise for a road-legal model. The stopwatch backs up that gut feeling with a timed lap of two minutes and six seconds, which is far faster than he expected. However, he’s also eager to give it another go in four-wheel drive and Baja mode to see if that makes a difference, which we’ll certainly be keeping an eye out for as well.