Ford Motor Co. is testing a Ford Ranger Raptor to run as a stablemate to the high-performance F-150 Raptor pickup truck.

Trucks.com obtained these spy photographs of what looks to be the mid-size Ranger Raptor at Ford’s test track near its headquarters in Dearborn, Mich.

Ford announced the U.S. return of the Ranger line – it is still sold overseas – at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January. It will return to Ford’s North American vehicle lineup in 2019 to compete with popular mid-size trucks such as the Chevrolet Colorado and Toyota Tacoma.

A Raptor-branded variant would allow Ford to compete with the rugged off-road versions, such as the Chevy Colorado ZR2 and Toyota Tacoma TRD.

Ford Ranger Raptor pickup truck spy shots back

(Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)

This Ranger prototype caught on the test track features an aggressive front end compared to other 2019 Ranger prototypes and is in keeping with the F-150 Raptor's modified styling.

Other changes are likely to revolve around new fenders, shocks, tires, an increased ride height, as well as a more powerful engine. Ford’s 3.5-liter Ecoboost turbocharged V6 engine may be detuned for the Ranger or it may use a version of the smaller 2.7-liter Ecoboost V6 also found in the F-150. The Ranger Raptor is expected to be mated to the new 10-speed automatic transmission Ford co-developed with General Motors.

Expect to see a Ranger Raptor sometime after the standard models appear for the 2020 model year.

Ford Ranger Raptor pickup truck spy shots grille

(Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)

Ford is already building factory capacity to produce the Ranger and other rugged vehicles. The automaker plans to invest $1.2 billion in three of its manufacturing facilities in Michigan to support the production of the Ranger models and the Bronco sport utility vehicle as well as production of electrified and autonomous vehicles.

It will spend $850 million retooling its Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich., to bring back the two nameplates.

The company’s investment also includes $150 million to expand capacity for engine components for the Ranger and Bronco at its Romeo Engine Plant in Romeo, Mich., which also builds engines for its Ford Super Duty pickups.

Editor’s note: Photos and story by Brian Williams for Trucks.com.

Now Read: 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor Forges New Ground On-Road and Off

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