|Supercharged 6.2L HEMI® V8||Engine||High Output 3.5L Ecoboost V6|
|8,100||Max Towing (lbs)||8,000|
A Pickup Power Play: The 2021 Ram TRX vs the 2020 Ford Raptor
When it comes to driving a pickup, any seasoned driver will tell you that there are trucks, and there are TRUCKS. The first denotes a good, reliable daily driver that happens to have a nice-sized bed. It can stow, tow, and go, but there probably aren’t huge numbers associated with its load capacity and maximum horsepower. Then there are TRUCKS. They’re big, they’re brash, and they're highly capable. These are the vehicles with brute power to go anywhere and do anything. These are trucks like the 2021 Ram TRX vs 2020 Ford Raptor.
Just the names alone tell you that these aren’t your everyday farm truck. Instead, these two trucks are bred to work hard and play even harder. But as a seasoned driver, how do you decide which one comes home, and which one stays on the lot? Let’s take a look at the two side-by-side to determine whether the 2021 TRX or the 2020 Raptor is the ideal companion for your hard-core pickup driving lifestyle.
First things first- a peek under the hood of both the 2021 Ram TRX and the 2020 Ford Raptor. This is a case in which more does mean more in terms of sheer, raw power, and force.
The 2021 Ram TRX engine comes with the moniker “legendary” already attached, according to the early press. A cast-iron engine block with a forged steel crankshaft and induction-hardened bearings is designed to handle up to 20,000 pounds of force. This is for the best, because the supercharged 6.2L Hemi V8 under the hood is capable of 702 horsepower and 650 lb-ft of torque, with a 0-60 mile per hour acceleration rate of 4.5 seconds. With numbers like these, you might be wondering if you’re looking at a half-ton pickup or a sports coupe. This Ram decides that it can and should be both. All told, the 2021 Ram TRX is capable of towing up to 8,100 pounds and can carry a 1,310-pound payload, making an ideal work partner and recreation vehicle.
The 2021 TRX is equipped with Launch Control and Launch Assist. Commonly seen on track-ready sports cars, these features provide greater control and regulation of engine RPM and wheel slip, allowing for a safe, speedy acceleration without squealing, sliding, slipping, and fishtailing.
While you might remember the days of trucks chugging placidly in the slow lane, the TRX has no problems in the fast lane with its maximum speed of 118 miles per hour. Also equipped with a TorqueFlite 8HP95 eight speed automatic transmission and a high-performance air induction system, the TRX harnesses all of its power for good, with incredibly responsive acceleration and braking, even in dusty, slick, or snowy conditions.
The 2020 Ford Raptor steps up to the plate with a high output 3.5L EcoBoost V6 engine, which features 24 twin-turbocharged, intercooled valves and overhead cams. An impressive engine in its own right, it boasts 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque. Not too shabby, but it does lag behind the mind-blowing numbers reported by the TRX.
The Ford engine is paired with a 10 speed automatic transmission, and features a port-fuel and direct-injection system for the healthiest engine and most sensitive response. While there’s no Launch Control for primo track-ready breaks, the Raptor holds its own with a 0-60 mile per hour acceleration rate of 5.5 seconds.
Drivers of the 2020 Ford Raptor SuperCab versions will have a towing capacity of 6,000 pounds, while SuperCrew drivers can look forward to big loads at an 8,000-pound maximum. The maximum payload for the SuperCab is 1,000 pounds, while the SuperCrew can handle 1,200.
Though the speed figures may say “track,” the overall construction and engineering of both the 2021 Ram TRX and the 2020 Ford Raptor say “trails.” Both of these trucks are ready to be on the road or off the road, so you can always get wherever you need to go.
The 2021 Ram TRX does have a very active Sport Mode, which features a tighter suspension, 30/70 torque split, and sport-tuned stability control for the paved surface, but the rest of its drive modes are designed to go literally anywhere else. Snow Mode helps with acceleration on slippery surfaces. Mud/Sand Mode calibrates throttle and a 45/55 torque split with overall distribution to handle deep, slick surfaces. Baja Mode was made for the dunes, and Rock Mode will have you bouldering in a highly capable extra low gear ratio with Selec-Speed Control for a safe descent.
The body of the TRX is also designed to take on strange surfaces, with 11.8-inch ground clearance, and 13-inch front suspension travel with a 14-inch rear suspension travel level, courtesy of five link coil suspension. The Bilstein Black Hawk e2 shock system is also equipped to handle some serious terrain, too. Found only on the 2021 TRX, these shocks have a lightning-quick reaction time, with proven damping and heat dissipation at speeds up to 100 miles per hour.
The 2020 Ford Raptor is prepared for departing the paved road, as well. With 11.5-inch ground clearance, it offers an approach angle of 30.2 degrees, and a departure angle of 23.1 degrees, all of which are similar to that of the TRX.
The Ford Raptor offers specialized Trail Control, as well. This feature serves as a sort of cruise control for off-roaders. All you need to do as the driver is set the speed, and then technology takes over, reading the terrain and changing to automatically update torque, acceleration, and braking. The result is that you’re free to diligently steer and enjoy the ride.
Of course, there’s more to a truck than horsepower and traction control. In order to be the perfect companion for work and play, a truck has to be equipped with enough comfort and convenience features to make it worth driving all day. The 2021 Ram TRX and the 2020 Ford Raptor both offer options for the driver to build the best interior for their travels.
The 2021 Ram TRX comes with a driver’s choice in interior options: A premium cloth-and-vinyl option, wrapped leather and suede, or the special TRX red and carbon fiber accented leather and suede interior. The steering wheel gives a nod to the racing credentials of the TRX, featuring a flat bottom style with enhanced grip and aluminum paddle shifters.
The Uconnect system operates from a 12-inch touchscreen and includes integration with Sirius XM 360 and Pandora, allowing you to blast some serious tunes through the 19 speaker Harman Kardon audio system. You’ll also have five USB ports- including A and C styles- and a wireless charging dock.
Are you looking for safety and driver assistance features? The TRX comes fully prepared, with a suite of standard and optional safety and security technology that includes Full Speed Forward Collision Warning, Ready Alert Braking, Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitoring, ParkView rear camera with dynamic gridlines, and more.
The 2020 Ford Raptor includes a great deal of the comfort and convenience features known throughout the F-150 lineup, so many will be familiar to seasoned drivers. This includes the FordPass Connect system, which provides 4GLTE WiFi for up to 10 devices. The 8 inch LCD touchscreen is your way into the infotainment system, which syncs up with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as the Sirius XM radio. A premium Bang & Olufsen audio system is also an option on the Raptor.
Since drivers have a choice between SuperCab and SuperCrew configurations, the Ford Raptor offers a variety of interior choices. Though front bucket seats with a premium cloth upholstery come standard, drivers may opt for leather-trimmed seats or even Recaro sport seats.
Ford’s suite of safety and driver assistance features shines through on the Raptor, as well. AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control keeps drivers confident no matter where the trail takes them, with a rearview camera that provides parking and hitch assistance. Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, Adaptive Cruise Control, Curve Control, Lane Keep Alerts, and a Blind Spot Information System with Trailer Coverage are also options to help drivers stay on the road and safe at all times.