The rugged Ford Bronco has been helping Ford reach new levels of sales success thanks to its combination of retro style and rugged capability. But while the Bronco is already a formidable beast in stock form, some buyers wondered what would happen if the Bronco received a healthy infusion of Raptor DNA? Ford is always up for a challenge and has unveiled the answer, the all-new 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor
Trailblazing Raptor Exterior Flexes Its Dino DNA
The first major change that Bronco fans will notice is that while the core styling of the Bronco Raptor retains the basic retro-inspired formula, there are alot of changes to be found here. The Raptor is 9.8 inches wider than a base Bronco four-door (no two-door model for now) with the extra track being partially achieved by revamped front and rear axles.
The front fascia sports the trademark Raptor front grille which features massive Ford script letters and integrated marker lights. The modular steel bumpers feature front-mounted tow hooks and removable bumper end caps which help increase ground clearance. The piece also included integrated Rigid sourced LED foglights and off-road lights which help provide higher amounts of illumination when doing some nighttime trail running,
The modular design of the Bronco’s body panels allowed Ford designers to turn up the volume a notch when it came to preparing the SUV for Raptor duty but the spotlight here is on the hood. All Raptor models use a piece that’s made out of sheet molded composite material which allowed them to insert a molded Carbon Black hood vent with Raptor logos mounted on either side. The fender vents match the body and when combined with the aforementioned hood event they do a good job delivering a unique visual presentation. The sides feature model exclusive rock rails as well as bigger fender flares while the rear features LED lighting and the taillight housing itself also appears to be slightly bigger than a standard Bronco’s.
Lastly, Ford will also offer a diverse lineup of colors for the Bronco Raptor including favorites like Area 51 and Shadow Black as well as a graphics package that incorporates floating shapes and a splatter effect to help add some unique charm to the Bronco’s flanks.
Luxury Packed Bronco Raptor Interior Is Ready For The Rigors Of Trail Duty
Slip inside the Bronco Raptor and you’ll be forgiven if you think you made a wrong turn and ended up in a luxury vehicle. The Raptor’s basic interior layout is classic Bronco with the horizontal dashboard and the functional button layout being carried over. However, the analog gauges in the instrument cluster have been replaced with a 12-inch digital instrument cluster. This cluster also sees duty in the F-150 Raptor and allows the driver to configure the readouts to their liking. That includes a model exclusive Performance view mode that places the tachometer and gear readouts in prominent view.
This screen is also complemented by a 12-inch dash-mounted infotainment screen that comes with SYNC 4 software that now allows owners to have a true swipe to select capability. The Bronco Ford featured in its press material also featured splashes of Code Orange that are applied to the GOAT mode selector knob, the door panels, and other select areas of the interior. As a bonus, the engine start/stop button even pulses in Code Orange. The steering wheel is a Raptor exclusive and comes equipped with steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles and fingertip-mounted buttons that control various aspects of the Bronco Raptor driving experience.
Our favorite feature though are the optional Black Onyx Neo suede front seats which feature thicker leather adorned bolsters to help keep front occupants firmly in place when tossing the SUV through wild off-roading challenges. The beefier thrones are also a noticeable upgrade over those on a standard Bronco and look for them to deliver the goods when it comes to the performance side of life. Buyers that choose to stick with the base Bronco Raptor will get marine-grade vinyl thrones with fully rubberized floors.
The bigger infotainment system is part of a standard “High” package that will come bundled with all Broncos, but buyers looking for more luxury have to opt for the “Lux” package which adds adaptive cruise control and a 10-speaker B&O premium audio system.
Bronco Raptor Comes With The Heart Of A Beast
Performance for the 2022 Bronco Raptor will arguably be the biggest departure from established Bronco tradition with the Raptor pitching the uplevel 2.7 liter turbocharged V6 for a bigger 3.0 liter twin-turbocharged V6 borrowed from the Ford Explorer. Ford claims that the new engine will produce over 400 hp and while the company chose to not reveal formal performance figures just yet, but did confirm that the engine benefits from enhanced intercooling and air filter systems designed to help the Bronco Raptor endure high temperatures in the desert.
The needs of the desert and rock crawling also caused Ford to rethink the construction of the engine itself with the Raptor’s version being made out of compact graphite and a core iron block. A 10-speed automatic is bolted in and aims to not only deliver the goods on capability but also fuel economy as well. No manual will be offered for now, but Ford could change its tune on that in the future if demand is strong enough from Bronco enthusiasts.
But the performance credentials go beyond the engine, with the frame and some of the Bronco’s inner construction also being heavily upgraded for Raptor duty. A quick look under the skin reveals a fully boxed high-strength steel frame with new shock towers that improve off-road wheel travel and off-road durability. An extensive network of bash and skid plates help protect the vulnerable innards of the Bronco from damage and additional reinforcement of the upper body and the B and C pillars helps enhance torsional rigidity.
Like the F-150 Raptor, the Bronco Raptor also benefits from the long-running partnership between Ford and suspension supplier FOX with the duo working together to upgrade the High-Performance Off-Road Suspension Stability system (HOSS) with Live-Valve technology. This nifty piece of tech is similar to the F-150’s with the system using FOX’s 3.1 internal bypass semi-active dampers that feature unique tuning at the front and rear of the Bronco. Ford Performance provided the front and rear control arms which deliver up to 13.0 inches of front wheel travel and 16.0 inches of rear-wheel travel with both of these figures being noticeable upgrades over a base Bronco model. With all of these upgrades, it’s good to see that the tires were not left out either, with all Raptor models coming with 37-inch BFGoodrich K02 all-terrain tires. Ford claims that these tires are the biggest offered on a production SUV in the U.S. That’s a healthy amount of shade being thrown at Jeep, but it’s hard to ignore the insane amounts of performance that the Bronco Raptor brings to the table.
When Can I Buy One?
Ford revealed that it will open up the order books in March, but Ford revealed that time will play a role in when buyers will get their Raptor with the company using a timestamp-based system to allocate the bulk of the first wave of 2022 inventory with the company targeting existing Bronco reservation holders first.
Pricing was also not mentioned, but look for it to be a sizable premium over the Bronco Wildtrak though that can radically change if some of Ford’s dealerships choose to slap hefty markups on top of the existing pricing.
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.