Ford says potentially life-saving autonomous emergency braking and other safety features are coming soon to its new Ranger Raptor.
The blue oval’s latest performance hero launched this week in the Australian outback misses out on AEB, forward collision warning and active cruise control; the latter two functions are already available on the Ranger Wildtrak and optional on the XLT model. That is despite the Raptor sitting at the top of the Ranger lineup and priced from $74,990 (plus on-road costs).
Trevor Worthington, Ford Asia Pacific vice president of vehicle development, defended the missing safety equipment by explaining it simply wasn’t possible to engineer it in time for the Raptor’s arrival in showrooms in October.
But he said it will come eventually and said AEB will be common amongst the 2019 Ranger, which is also due to launch later in 2018, with the Wildtrak and XLT models expected to make up a large proportion of sales.
“For the change that we’re making for the new Ranger about 70 to 80 per cent of our Rangers will have AEB,” Worthington said. “There are a couple of derivatives we are still delivering the plan on. We’ve got a firm plan to deliver AEB on all the other Rangers and we’re working on it.”
Part of the reason for the lack of AEB on the Raptor is integrating the system with the new model's unique front-end styling, with its own grille and bumpers.
“You’ll notice there are some physical differences between the [new Ranger] and the vehicle you see here,” Worthington said at the launch of the Raptor this week. “So there’s some work to do but it will be available in the not too distant future. We know how important it is, we’ve got lots and lots and lots of safety features on our vehicles, so it will be available soon.”
While Worthington wouldn’t give any detail on the timing for the addition of AEB, which is also likely to include forward collision warning and active cruise control, he did reveal it would be as soon as it’s ready and not held off for a model year update.
“It will be a rolling update. As soon as it’s ready we’ll roll it out,” he said.