Ford Ranger Raptor FX4 01

Hang on! What’s this? Australian automotive portal, CarAdvice, has managed to obtain several shots of what looks to be a hardcore variant of the Ford Ranger pick-up truck undergoing testing. Further fuelling the rumour mill is the fact that Ford Australia has trademarked the titles, Ranger Raptor and Ranger FX4.

As one will be able to see, the test mule features a variety of additions including wildly-flared wheel arches, a snorkel, a bullbar, wheel speed measurement devices and of course, an increased ride height. According to the photographer, the test driver was equipped with a helmet and was caught tackling some pretty rough terrain, including driving over gravel roads with high undulations.

Ford Ranger Raptor FX4 03

Should Ford unleash a Ranger Raptor on us, it will be the first time that the pick-up is offered in such a trim from the factory – third-party modifications do not count, obviously. However, there has been a Ford Ranger FX4 prior to this sighting. The FX4 was a special edition model that was equipped with all-terrain tyres, a Torsen limited-slip rear differential, Bilstein absorbers and a 31 spline 8.8-inch rear differential.

Unfortunately, Ford Australia has refused to issue a comment on the notion of a Ranger variant to sit atop the Ranger Wildtrak. “We’re concentrating on the pre-launch for the Ranger at the moment and the Wildtrak is our range-topper for Australia,” said Neil McDonald, brand communications manager of Ford Australia.

GALLERY: Ford Ranger Wildtrak facelift