Ford’s Raptor R Is Ready To Take On The Apex-Predator Ram TRX!

How Do The Two Performance Off-Roaders Compare?

With the automotive world moving towards electrification, Ford and Ram continue to battle it out in the performance off-road pickup scene with a pair of supercharged V8 options. Yesterday, Ford pulled the covers off of its highly-anticipated 2023 F-150 Raptor R, a direct answer to Ram’s apex predator TRX off-roader. So how does the Ram 1500 TRX hold up against the Raptor R? 

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First the similarities. Both supercharged performance off-roaders handle the most punishing conditions with extreme high-speed off-road suspensions inspired by desert off-road racers. Only available in a four-door Crew Cab, short-bed configuration, both the TRX and Raptor R offer a more aggressive stance than their half-ton brethren with wider, muscular bodies.

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Both trucks are the most powerful versions of their nameplates ever produced. The Raptor R uses the supercharged 5.2-liter “Predator” V8 from the Mustang Shelby GT500, tuned for off-road use it delivers 700 horsepower and 640 lb.-ft. of torque. Those numbers fall just shy of the TRX’s supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® HELLCAT V8, which is rated at 702 horsepower and 650 lb.-ft. of torque. Both trucks conform to the SAE J2723 ratings.

2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R vs 2022 Ram 1500 TRX Engine Stats
  2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R 2022 Ram 1500 TRX
Engine Supercharged 5.2-liter “Predator” V8 Supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI “Hellcat” V8
Type & Description 90-degree overhead-cam V8 90-degree V-type, liquid-cooled
Displacement 315 cu. in. 376 cu. in.
Bore x Stroke 3.70 in. x 3.66 in 4.09 in. x 3.58 in.
Valve System DOHC, four valves per cylinder, twin independent
variable camshaft timing
Pushrod-operated overhead valves, 16 valves with sodium-filled exhaust valves and hollow stem intake valves, 16 conventional hydraulic lifters, all with roller tips
Fuel Injection Distributor-less with coil-on-plug Sequential, multiport, electronic, returnless
Construction Forged aluminum Deep-skirt cast-iron block with cross-bolted main bearing caps, aluminum-alloy heads
with hemispherical combustion chambers
Compression Ratio 9.5:1 9.5:1
Power (SAE J2723) 700 hp @ 6,650 rpm 702 hp @ 6,100 rpm
Torque (SAE J2723) 640 lb.-ft. @4,250 rpm 650 lb.-ft. @ 4,800 rpm
Fuel Requirement Premium 91 octane (R+M)/2 — required Premium 91 octane (R+M)/2 — required
Oil Capacity 11.5 quarts 7.9 quarts 
Coolant Capacity 12.0 liters 14.4 liters
Assembly Plant Dearborn, Michigan Saltillo Engine Plant, Saltillo, Mexico

The new Raptor R carries over the 10-speed SelectShift® automatic transmission from the standard F-150 Raptor. The transmission features improved calibration, specifically for the Raptor R model. It allows the Raptor R to feature rapidly-quick shifting to help the Predator engine deliver the best output for the situation possible.

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For TRX models, the Ram team selected the robust ZF-sourced 8HP95 8-speed TorqueFlite automatic transmission. The 8HP95 monitors inputs, such as engine torque gradients, throttle kick-down, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, detection of friction, downshifts, and road grade. This versatile, well-developed, high-torque-capacity, eight-speed transmission delivers quick acceleration and precise, crisp, quick gear changes, enhancing ride quality to luxury car levels with consistent performance and drivability.

2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R vs 2022 Ram 1500 TRX Suspension
  2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R 2022 Ram 1500 TRX
Front Configuration Independent double-wishbone with coil-over shock and cast aluminum lower control arm Upper and lower A-arms, coil springs
Shock Absorbers continuously variable compression damping
FOX Racing Shox™
Bilstein® e2 Blackhawk active performance shock
Rear Configuration Five-link coil with Panhard rod Five-link with track bar, coil springs
Front Travel (Inches) 13.0 13.0
Rear Travel (Inches) 14.1  14.;0
Ground Clearance (Inches) 13.1 11.8
Approach Angle (Degrees) 33.1 30.2
Departure Angle (Degrees) 24.9 23.5
Breakover Angle (Degrees) 24.4 21.9

The 2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R, uses the same suspension setup as the standard Raptor. It features a precision-engineered five-link rear suspension developed specifically for Raptor, designed to deliver more control and power to the ground with greater confidence over rough terrain at high speeds.

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The rear suspension provides more wheel travel and features extra-long trailing arms to better maintain axle position on rough terrain, a Panhard rod, and 24-inch coil springs. The suspension design combined with sophisticated engine management software means the truck can put torque to the rear wheels for throttle responsiveness and quickness off the line while simultaneously delivering comfort, stability, handling, control, and traction at speed.

Soaking up giant whoops and landings comes courtesy of FOX Live Valve internal bypass shocks with state-of-the-art electronic control technology offering position-sensitive damping adjustability. Raptor’s largest-ever shocks are designed to better resist heat buildup and to react even faster to terrain changes for greater confidence over extended desert running. The 3.1-inch-diameter anodized aluminum shock bodies are filled with low-friction shock fluid specially designed to decrease frictional losses inside the damper for improved off and on-road comfort.

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Raptor R comes standard with 37-inch tires and features 13.1 inches of running clearance, 33.1 degrees of approach angle, a maximum 24.9 degrees of departure angle, and 24.4 degrees of break-over angle to clear the biggest obstacles. 

2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R vs 2022 Ram 1500 TRX Transfer Case
  2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R 2022 Ram 1500 TRX
Transfer Case Hi-Lock BW 48-13 Full-Time
Shift Mechanism Electric Electric
Available Speeds Two-Speed Two-Speed
Low-Range Ratio 2.64:1 2.64:1

The 2022 Ram 1500 TRX on the other hand, features an independent front suspension system with active damping that uses high-strength aluminum to maintain overall strength and durability. The independent front suspension system includes front upper and lower control arms made of forged aluminum with special attention paid to the caster and camber angles during suspension cycling. The longer, substantially sized front upper and lower control arms are constructed of 80-ksi high-strength steel and designed with a focus on additional wheel travel and axle track width. This new suspension system features upgraded components to provide more performance and improved endurance.

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Out back, the Ram TRX’s rear suspension had to clear packaging barriers and the engineering team took that into consideration with this unique application. The result is an innovative and durable solution that produces greater wheel travel without reducing the cargo area in the bed.

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The Ram TRX uses an all-new rear suspension system with active damping and an exclusive five-link coil system for incredible ride characteristics and durability. The frame’s hard points for the five-link suspension system differ when compared to a standard-issue Ram 1500 and allow the Dana 60 rear axle to travel up to 13 inches. Overall, rear-wheel travel is increased to more than 13 inches from the standard 9 inches, or more than 40% when compared to the rest of the Ram 1500 lineup.

2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R vs 2022 Ram 1500 TRX Dimensions
  2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R 2022 Ram 1500 TRX
Wheelbase (Inches) 145.4 145.1
Track, Front (Inches) 74.0 74.5
Track, Rear (Inches) 73.6 74.1
Overall Length (Inches) 232.6 232.9
Overall Width (Inches) 96.0 88.0
Overall Height (Inches) 80.6 80.9
Curb Weight (lbs) 5,950 lbs. 6,350 lbs.

When it comes to wheels and tires, both trucks offer different setups. The Raptor R features 17-inch x 8.5-inch forged aluminum Beadlock-capable wheels wrapped in 37-inch L37x12.50R17 BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 rubber. Ram engineers instead have equipped the TRX with a set of 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory All-Terrain 325/65R/18 tires. Unlike the Raptor R, Ram offers two different wheel designs including 18-inch x 9-inch optional aluminum Beadlock-capable wheels.

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With it comes to maximum payload, the Raptor R does edge out the TRX by 90 lbs. with a 1,400 lbs. The Raptor R also beats the TRX’s maximum towing rating of 8,100 lbs, by 600 lbs with an 8,700 lb. rating.

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But where the TRX shines, is in pricing. Although the big Ram has continued to climb in price, an entry-level 2022 Ram 1500 has the starting U.S. Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $78,790 (not including $1,795 for destination). Now, while that doesn’t include a lot of the luxury or convenience options, it is still quite a bit cheaper than the base U.S. MSRP of the Raptor R which starts at $109,415 (not including destination).

2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R vs 2022 Ram 1500 TRX Price
  2023 Ford F-150 Raptor R 2022 Ram 1500 TRX
Base Price (U.S. MSRP) $109,415 $78,790
Destination $1,795 $1,795

Unlike the TRX, the Raptor R comes pretty much loaded to the gills. However, if you quickly check all of the option boxes including the Beadlock-capable wheels, TR2 Equipment Group, exterior graphics, Off-Road Style Running Boards from Mopar, and RamBar, the TRX’s price quickly rises to around $105,000, but still is cheaper than the Raptor R.

Nevertheless, it should be a very interesting battle between the two off-roaders once the Raptor R becomes available. Something we can’t wait to see in person.

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