Ford Performance Team Designs A Sweet Desert Baja Training Course for Bronco Owners

Ralph Waldo Emerson said that “One should not always go where there’s a path, yet instead of where’s there no path and leave a trail for others.” There have been so many exciting announcements to keep up with during this 1stquarter, but one in particular really grabbed our attention! The U.S. division of Ford has announced that all Bronco Raptor buyers will be able to enjoy an exhilarating experience crafted by experts in the desert to help break in their new toy.

A Sweet Desert Baja Training Course for Bronco Owners

This 418 Horsepower Desert Racer SUV is one of those vehicles that immediately makes you imagine fearlessly crushing boulders or fording raging rivers. The Raptor Experience in Nevada was built by Ford experts to properly prepare drivers for dunes, rocks, and other challenges encountered far away from the pavement. Champions like Brad Lovell and other experts such as Bob Burns eagerly offered up their input during course construction. More than 30,000 owners have already visited the course which allows for all-out enjoyment of this capable beast.

Conquering the wild w/ unparalleled design:

The Car and Driver team immediately were smitten with this capable off-road predator that offers up an EcoBoost twin-turbo V6. You’ll be gleefully channeling Indiana Jones as you are enjoying the benefits of a multi-configurable 4-wheel drive system. The suspension setup features Fox dampers that can conquer anything in their path. 37-inch tires with deep treads are another primo ingredient that are knobbily prepared for ruts, inclines, and lack of asphalt.

The skid plates on the bottom provide the protection needed for the underside valuables while lurching forward on challenging terrain. As passers-by watch those off-roading from above or on TV, they sometimes wonder why they are moving so slowly. One attempt at a course such as this one will show you why the obstacles in your way can make you slow even below the 1 mph mark! The Raptor also boasts a 4500-pound towing rating and gets up to 60 mph in less than six seconds.

Brute-level strength + air-catching candor:

There’s just one trim style available here, and the ol’ faithful in the form of a four-door body style. Much like your favorite drill-bit set, there are no worries with this very minor limitation. Standard equipment includes a 10-speed automatic and 4.7-axle ratio, along with a boomin’ 10-speaker B&O stereo system. Marine-grade vinyl is the covering for the standard seats, and rubber floors allow for obligatory post-mudding mess removal.

We know that there’s not a V8 under the hood, and trust us, it’s not a big deal! The twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 cranks out 418 horsepower and 440 lb-ft of torque, paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. One of the modern marvels that render this beast so fantastic is the selectable G.O.A.T. system. Check out all these different drive mode settings before you peek at your trail map!

  • Normal
  • Eco
  • Sport
  • Slippery
  • Sand
  • Mud/Ruts
  • Rock Crawl

A savagely sophisticated suspension:

The Raptor’s suspension setup is superior in many ways. To handle the impact of dune-crushing and catching air, there’s a much wider track built for stability at high speeds. The Car and Driver crew noticed the amazing difference right away as they crawled through rocky passes. Here is where the low-range gearing proved its ability and worth after they had already successfully blasted up to 60 mph in just 5.6 seconds at their private test track.

The front upper shock/spring mount tower is raised 2.4 inches, and has undergone significant reinforcement. The cast lower control arm for the raptor now includes a jounce bumper, with a pad built for the job welded directly onto the frame. In the back, the frame now includes valuable mounting points with expertly engineered jounce bumpers. The shocks onboard feature live valve technology that adjusts the damping rate every millisecond. We have to admit that for even the most diehard engineering fan, this is a very advanced setup!

So… this is going to be much more fun than traffic school!

The track itself in Nevada draws inspiration from Ultra4 Racing courses. To tackle this properly requires mastering both high-speed desert running along with the meticulous task of rock crawling. This track offers up a combination of demanding desert terrain, with instructors who know just how to point you in the right direction. Purchasers who have treated themselves to the 2022 or 2023 Bronco Raptor are entitled to a full day here at the Mt Potosi, NV course.

All of this goes down just minutes away from the glamour and excitement of the Las Vegas strip. You can even bring a guest for free, who may or may not be thrilled with your Raptor handling prowess! Here drivers can master technology built specifically for the Raptor that knows no limits. These include Trail 1-Pedal Drive, 4×4 operation, the G.O.A.T Modes, and 360-degree cameras. It is also the perfect opportunity to learn about recovery straps, tow ropes, winches, and hi-lift jacks to aid you when you encounter trouble.

Starting to daydream of kicking up dust?

The Bronco Raptor is one of those epic vehicles built specifically for tackling incredible opportunities for adventure. The shifting sand dunes, rocky washes, and remote trails of off-road territory are its prime target. Wouldn’t you love to escape the city for awhile and learn from the best about becoming a seasoned Raptor driver? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below, or check out another article about our first look at the Raptor last year.

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Jon Weirman
I am a freelance writer in the Midwest who specializes in vehicles built for expert-level off-roading, and anything with a staggering amount of horsepower. In my first life I worked in broadcasting for Starz Network and Discovery Channel. I also love retro video games and sci-fi movies. Everything from the loud and burly muscle cars of the late 1970s to new crossover SUVs with futuristic tech features have populated my inbox!

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