When I had my chance behind the wheel, it was on the road at first, as Ford wanted us to get to know the truck in familiar conditions. My initial reaction was that I felt just as confident as in any truck. Credit the shocks and sway bars.
The wide track of the Raptor comes with little difference in ride height, so body roll is minimal. As I drove through Highway 78 I pushed the Raptor into corners and the truck responded predictably, with the big BFGs offering minimal tire noise. In fact, it seemed that at highway speeds the combined wind, engine, and tire noises nearly cancelled each other out. I had a moment to speak with Heather Fedullo, a noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) engineer on Ford’s performance SVT, one-on-one. Thankfully Hether was able to explain the complicated NVH tuning in layman’s terms, since I didn’t share her engineering background. She compared the NVH tuning to conducting an orchestra, where each sound needs to be balanced. Raptor’s anticipated buyers, as with most SVT buyers, don’t mind a more aggressive exhaust, and the SVT team came through in that regard, letting the exhaust play a more prominent role in the sound package. I was not the only one to notice, as several other journalists made comments on the Raptor’s exhaust note, which is a nice mellow lope at idle and a low growl under throttle.