The News for July 7th, 2017

Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of some of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. There’s also just a little opinion of mine because I can. This week:

  • Ford reveals custom F-22 Raptor-“inspired” F-150 Raptor for charity

  • Dodge confirms Durango SRT pricing and Q4 delivery dates

  • Volvo commits to electrifying entire lineup by 2019

  • Tesla is finally starting Model 3 production this week

  • What’s your automotive news?

Ford “F22 Raptor” F-150

Ford has a fairly long history of supporting the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) and their youth programs by auctioning a different one-off car each year at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. Typically these cars have all been Mustangs that have been customized to honor something or someone different each year. They’ve paid homage to the Blue Angels, Thunderbirds, Bob Hoover, the Tuskegee Airmen, the SR-71, the Apollo missions, and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. This year, they chose to go with an F-22 Raptor theme… and there was really only one way to go.
Yep, they went with a one-off F-150 Raptor to celebrate the awesomeness that is the F-22 Raptor. One rules the sky, the other rules the dirt. A standard-issue 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor was modified by the Ford Performance Team in an effort led by Ford design manager Melvin Betancourt. The goal was to strive for a creative connection to Lockheed’s F-22 Raptor while highlighting the unique style, capabilities, and design features of the 2017 F-150 Raptor.

Clearly, an off-road-oriented pickup and a $150 million stealth fighter jet don’t really have a whole lot in common. To try and fix that, it has a special paint job which maybe sort of tries to somewhat mimic the F-22’s skin with metallic paint (which the plane doesn’t have) and red accents (which it also doesn’t have). It also has navigation lights on the side mirrors and carbon fiber fender arches and side vents – which, while justified since the F-22’s fuselage is made up of carbon polymers, is probably the dumbest thing you can add to an off-road truck.
Other custom styling touches include a hilarious nine-bulb light bar mounted up on the roof (just like the real thing), a custom grille with an F-22’s face on it, a custom branded F-22 tail gate, spare tires in the bed (the F-22 carries spares, right?), and red brake calipers behind new off-road wheels. They say the interior has also gotten some attention, but they didn’t go into details nor did they show it.

The F-150 Raptor’s power plant hasn’t been replaced by twin Pratt & Whitney afterburning turbofans, but it has still been upgraded. The 3.5-liter EcoBoost (twin-turbo) V6 now features Whipple intercooling and maybe some other stuff to increase its output to 545 horsepower (up from 450 hp).
It’s a badass truck and all, but the connections between it and the actual plane seem a bit forced. If it didn’t have the big “F-22” script on the side, would you have even guessed what this truck was inspired by? But regardless of whether it’s been done as well as it could’ve, it’s being auctioned off on July 27th at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, specifically during the Gathering of Eagles event, with all proceeds going to their youth programs. Someone will spend a couple hundred thousand on it to help out a great cause, and that’s all that really matters here.
[Source: EAA]

Dodge Durango SRT pricing

What was once the most powerful SUV in FCA’s arsenal, for like, 2 months, is one step closer to terrorizing the streets. The Dodge Durango SRT will start arriving at dealerships Q4 this year with an MSRP set at $62,995 plus a $1,095 destination charge.
Only outshined by the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, the Durango SRT is powered by a 392-cubic-inch Hemi V8 with 475 horsepower and 470 lb.-ft. of torque. Power goes to all four wheels through a specially tuned nine-speed TorqueFlite automatic, helping it achieve an NHRA-certified 0-60 mph time of 4.4 seconds and a quarter mile time of 12.9 seconds. And it does all of that while packing a third row and hauling up to 8,700 pounds (just not all at the same time).

It’ll come with a fair amount of standard features, including Bilstein active-damping suspension, big Brembo brakes, various bespoke SRT styling features, and all the comfort and infotainment features you’d expect from a $60K Durango. Some of the optional extras include twenty-inch split-five spoke wheels with Low Gloss Black Noise finish, three-season tires, a power sunroof, Demonic Red Laguna leather seating, rear DVD entertainment, and more premium interior finishes.
One final perk of SRT ownership is a full day of professional instruction at the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving in Chandler, Arizona given to anyone who buys a Durango SRT. Order books should be open very soon.
[Source: Dodge]

Volvo electrifying entire fleet by 2019

This week, Volvo announced a major change coming to their lineup within the next couple of years. By 2019, all Volvos will come with at least one electric motor, marking the historic end of Volvos which only have an internal combustion engine.
What this doesn’t mean is Volvo is going all-electric as some are saying. There will certainly be pure EVs on the market by then, but the gas and diesel-electric hybrids, like their awesome turbocharged and supercharged hybrid T8 powertrain option, aren’t going anywhere yet.
Between 2019 and 2021, five “fully” electric cars (two of which will be performance cars from Polestar) will join the lineup as well. By 2025, they want to have sold a total of one million electrified cars. Furthermore, they’re also cleaning up their manufacturing operations and want it all to be carbon neutral by 2025.
[Source: Volvo]

Tesla Model 3 deliveries starting “soon”

Elon Musk shared some new updates regarding the Tesla Model 3 on Twitter, as he normally does, and confirmed the wait is almost over.
The Model 3 cleared its final regulatory hurdle making it ready for production, which technically starts today. Today is the day they expect to complete serial number one of the production-spec Model 3. After that, production will grow exponentially while they ensure things are working as expected.
They’re planning on handing over the first 30 Model 3s to customers by July 28th and then moving up to another 100 cars built in August, 1,500 cars in September, and ideally 20,000 cars in December. So basically from December on, the Fremont, California assembly plant will be full speed ahead trying to catch up to the some 400,000 Model 3 pre-orders they received. If you didn’t pre-order or didn’t stand in line like the crazier ones did, it’s going to be quite the wait.
[Source: Twitter]

What’s your automotive news?

That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.
Have a good weekend.
[Image © 2017 Hooniverse/Greg Kachadurian]

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5 responses to “The News for July 7th, 2017”

  1. nanoop Avatar

    I filled the van a first time with diesel, and hate it, persistent smell on the filler, fingers, and everything you touch. Luckily, 33mpg and a 24gal tank make me go only every now and then.

    1. wunno sev Avatar
      wunno sev

      you figure out how to keep it off yourself eventually. i’ve found that what makes the diesel drip (or gasoline, from the nozzle) is the motion of pulling it out and accelerating it backwards, so a pretty vigorous back-and-forth sloshing of the nozzle tends to minimize dribbling. try to look like the Texas Tech bellringer.

      1. outback_ute Avatar

        The pump handles are usually greasy with diesel already. Some places have disposable plastic gloves available, otherwise some paper towel will get 98% of it.
        I wonder who is going to be the first to load a Durango SRT to the limit and charge up the Davis Dam road to see if the cooling system will cope, or if it can survive doing burnouts etc. Hopefully it was the Dodge engineers!
        Also I have to say I’m surprised to hear that the Tesla model 3 is nearly in production. I wonder if this will make their operations profitable?

  2. wunno sev Avatar
    wunno sev

    those F-22 intakes on the Raptor’s grille are SUCH nostrils

  3. nanoop Avatar

    I also realize only now that my associations with the F22 (fast, stealthy, high tech, surgical precision) hardly overlap with the truck’s properties.
    I also had my first drive in a Boxster today. It is less noisy than a 944 and has no proper roof, but it is better at everything else. I’d like to drive an Elise now, but before that I should check the hardtop options for a first gen. Boxster.