Derbyshire firm builds 450hp USA muscle pickup lookalike

Fans of Ford’s 450hp Raptor will no doubt be disappointed that this all-American bruiser of a pickup will never go on sale this side of the Atlantic.

But thanks to the efforts of pre-owned Derbyshire 4×4 specialist Motorseeker UK, they can get they can get their mitts on a vehicle that sports a very similar look.

For the past couple of years, the firm has been building Raptor-style trucks based on the far more European-friendly Ranger diesel.

The starting point is a good, used truck with reasonably low mileage and any trim level – from entry-level commercial machines all the way up to the top-spec Wildtrak.

See also: Beefed-up Isuzu AT35 pickup is off-road king

These then get a thorough mechanical going over before the modifications start. For the standard Raptor model, this includes a 2in suspension lift, fitting of 16in steel rims with on- or off-road tyres and wide wheel arch extensions.

Snorkels optional

Buyers have the choice of a huge range of additional options too, from bonnet scoops and roll bars to snorkels and full underseal application. Higher-lift suspension kits and more extreme off-road add-ons are also available.

Prices for trucks fitted with the standard modifications start at about £17,000 +VAT and go up to about £25,000 +VAT.

For that, you’ll get a newer-shape T7 donor vehicle with the addition of various coloured vinyl wraps. The firm is even planning to offer a Realtree woodland camouflage version.

All the parts fitted by Motorseeker UK are standard off-the-shelf products, so it is possible to create a similar look on your own truck by sourcing and fitting the products.

However, for those that would rather leave the work to the professionals, Motorseeker does offer a service to fit out existing vehicles.

It also offers similar conversion kits for the Nissan Navara, Isuzu DMax, Toyota Hilux and Mitsubishi L200.

The inspiration – Ford F-150 Raptor

The hottest version of Ford’s ever-popular USA-spec F-150 pickup range is the 450hp Raptor, which has been treated to a revamp for 2018.

It now comes with a 3.5-litre, twin-turbocharged V6 petrol that develops a meaty 444hp and 692Nm torque. That’s enough to get it from 0 to 60mph in about six seconds.

This six-potter replaces the old model’s 6.2-litre V8, which actually produced less power and torque at 411hp and 588Nm respectively.

In the transmission department, Ford is using a new 10-speed auto with paddle shifters as well as a switchable four-wheel drive system.

Its list price is $50,000 (about £35,500) but there are no plans for it to go on sale in the UK. With a fuel economy figure of about 16mpg, that’s probably no bad thing.

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