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2011 Ford Raptor Ecoboost at Baja 1000

Friday, December 21st 2012. | Ford F-150 Raptor, Reviews

The Ford Raptor is the perfect vehicle to challenge the most gruesome terrains with. Thus, it is only natural for the Raptor to take part in the most challenging and relentless off-road race known to man, the Baja 1000. With the unforgiving terrain of the desert and extreme temperature changes that occur there, you really do need a car that is built for tackling merciless conditions. But what about a Ford F-150 based 2011 SVT Raptor with a more modest EcoBoost 3.5 turbocharged V6? How would a Ford F-150 without the power of a big V8 fare in a race that breaks down the strongest and toughest of off-roaders?

Well the answer to this question simply pretty well. The F-150 Raptor with the EcoBoost V6 that produced 364 horsepower and 420-pound feet of torque was driven by Mike McCarthy and completed the 1061 mile race in 38 hours, 20 minutes and 58 seconds with an average speed of 27.57 mph. It is worth saying here that merely completing this 1000 mile torture fest is a feat on its own letting alone completing it in a little over 38 hours. The race started in Ensenada, Mexico and finished at La Paz, near the Baja peninsula.

What makes this achievement even more special is the fact that the particular engine that was put into McCarthy’s 2011 Raptor started out life months ago as a test subject at the Cleveland Engine Plant and was made to run for 150,000 miles on the dyno as an endurance test. Next the engine was bolted to an F-150 that was used for dragging logs in Oregon. After that, this very sane engine was used to tow an 11000 pound trailer carrying two racecars on the Homestead Miami Speedway. After having to go through a decade’s worth of work, this stock V6 was put into an F-150 that was going to challenge the Baja 1000 without even receiving the courtesy of a rebuild. As it turns out, the EcoBoost engine was reliable and powerful enough to work through so much punishment and on top of all this, the EcoBoost F-150 maintained an average economy of 8.5 mpg even though the prediction was of an economy of 3 mpg.  In the end, McCarthy had this to say about the EcoBoost engine, “It has way more power than a V8. It’s much faster”.


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