2019 Ford F-150 Raptor gets smarter with new off-road tech

The 2019 Ford F-150 Raptor gets a handful of updates for the new model year. The truck may look basically the same on the outside, but some new tech features should make it even better at conquering rough terrain.

For 2019, the Raptor’s Fox Racing internal-bypass shock absorbers get a new system called Live Valve that allows them to adjust on the fly. Like the adaptive-damping systems used in many sports cars and luxury cars, Live Valve lets the Fox shocks change their level of firmness, depending on conditions.

In the Raptor, Live Valve allows for 13.0 inches of suspension travel at the front, and 13.9 inches at the rear. That’s exactly what you want when negotiating uneven terrain. The system also works with the Raptor’s existing Terrain Management system to adjust the shocks to suit multiple drive modes. So when the Raptor is back on pavement, the shocks automatically adjust accordingly to allow for a smoother ride.

Also new for 2019 is a system called Trail Control. It basically acts as a low-speed, off-road cruise control, keeping the Raptor puttering along at a set speed of between 1 mph and 20 mph while the driver steers. Smooth throttle application is crucial to maintaining traction off-road, so this system could really help novice drivers.

The only other major change for 2019 is a pair of new Recaro sport seats, available in a blue design inspired by one of the interior color options from the Ford GT supercar. The Raptor also gets three new color options (Ford Performance Blue, Velocity Blue, and Agate Black), and a handful of minor cosmetic changes.

Ford did not make any changes to the powertrain, so the Raptor sticks with its 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 and 10-speed automatic transmission. The V6 makes a healthy 450 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque, so it’s not like the Raptor was wanting for power. It’s even enough power for drifting, should the mood take you.

The 2019 Ford F-150 Raptor goes on sale later this year. Pricing will be announced closer to the launch date, but expect a slight bump over the 2018 model’s $50,115 base price to account for the new features. Meanwhile, the smaller Ranger Raptor has generated a lot of buzz, but Ford hasn’t decided whether to bring it to the United States.

Product Review

2019 Chevrolet Silverado is the biggest and best Silverado ever

There’s a lot to tell in our 2019 Chevrolet Silverado first drive review, from new engine options, new chassis and suspension design, new bed and tailgate features, new trailering tools, and new trim levels. Dive in and learn.
Cars

2019 Honda Civic sedan and coupe add more standard driver-assist tech

The 2019 Honda Civic compact sedan and coupe get a handful of updates to stay fresh, including exterior styling tweaks, standard Honda Sensing driver aids, and a new Sport trim level.
Cars

Stop backing into your neighbor's car with the best backup cameras

The right backup camera will allow you to better avoid vehicles and other obstacles without taking your eyes off the road, rendering "sorry, I hit your car!" notes a thing of the past. Here are our current favorites.
Cars

Land Rover’s flagship Range Rover gets greener, smarter for 2019

The 2019 Land Rover Range Rover adds a new P400e plug-in hybrid variant, Wade Sensing system for water fording, and adaptive cruise control with steering assist. The big SUV remains as luxurious and off-road capable as ever.
Cars

These are the best 2019 wagons on sale today in the U.S.

While minivans seemed to have fallen out of favor for the SUV and the crossover SUV with just a few available today, wagons remain relatively popular, particularly with a strong cult following. These are the best wagons on sale today that…
Cars

You’ll need $68,000 to land a tech-rich 2019 Audi A7 in your driveway

Have you been eyeing the latest rendition of Audi’s tech-savvy A7 Sportback? Well the deal just got a little sweeter as Ingolstadt’s finest just announced the pricing list for the new 2019 Audi A7.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Robo sidekicks, AC for your bed, and more

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the Web this week. You can't buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Cars

Alfa Romeo’s working on a new 8C plug-in hybrid supercar

Despite the untimely and sad death of former FCA CEO, Sergio Marchionne, the show must go on and Alfa Romeo's reportedly working on a new mid-engined, gas-electric plug-in hybrid supercar called the 8C.
Cars

Head Tesla engineer leaves for Apple to possibly reboot self-driving car

Apple's self-driving car project could get the reboot as a former chief engineer for Tesla Motors left the company to go back to Apple. Doug Field, who worked at Tesla from 2013 until last month, will go back to Apple.
Cars

NYC just dealt a major blow to Uber and Lyft

New York City regulators placed a cap on operational licenses it grants for Uber and Lyft drivers. The city says it's an attempt to try and save the city’s integral Yellow Cab system after several cab drivers committed suicide.
Cars

Take a Don Draper-worthy road trip in this vintage $225,000 RV

Everything from the unique shape down to the luxury finishes makes this fully restored travel trailer worth the price. It's even been signed by Chuck Pelly.
Cars

How autonomous ridesharing will reshape our cars, cities, and lives

Ridesharing is a growing phenomenon, and it’s closely linked with developments in autonomous and connectivity technology. In the coming decades, shared mobility will even change the way cities around the world develop.
Cars

NHTSA investigating Ford F-150 seat belt fires, may recall 1.4 million trucks

The NHTSA is investigating reports of fires in five Ford F-150 pickup trucks. The NHTSA's Office of Defect Investigation is exploring whether seatbelt pretensioners caused the fires during crashes and if a recall is necessary.
Cars

You don’t need to go autonomous to make trucking safer

Long haul truckers are very good at their jobs, but they face long hours and unpredictable conditions. Autonomous tech may be coming, but here’s how lidar technology companies are working to enhance trucking safety today.