Thailand’s motorsports scene is literally bursting at the seams, and proof of this is Ford Thailand Racing’s diesel-fed Ranger racing truck. From the looks of it alone, we’re not talking about an ordinary diesel Ranger pickup. In fact, this truck is engineered to compete in the Super Pickup class of the Thailand Super Series.
It may look like a Ranger Raptor, but it’s actually based on a regular Ford Ranger with standard leaf springs (the Ranger Raptor has a multilink rear suspension). Powered by a 3.2-liter inline-five turbodiesel engine, the stock motor produces 194 horsepower and 347 pound-feet of torque, but we’re betting the house this truck is running on a modified mill with a larger turbocharger and a cold air intake system at the very least.
The engine is connected to a six-speed manual transmission, sending power exclusively to the rear wheels. Other changes include race-ready Ohlins suspension dampers, Wilwood brakes, a wild aerodynamic body kit including a tailgate-mounted adjustable rear spoiler combined with a ridiculously large rear diffuser, smallish racing wheels, and Hankook racing tires. The Raptor look is courtesy of an OEM Raptor grille with a larger air dam.
Meanwhile, the interior is all business with a full roll cage, a Racetech bucket seat, a digital dashboard, and a quick-release steering wheel. Also, Ford Racing Thailand has deleted the front passenger and rear seats to reduce weight.
Ford Racing Thailand’s Ranger racing truck will be driven by professional Thai racing driver Sandy Stuvik, a 25-year-old phenom who also competes in the local GT3 championship behind the wheel of an Audi R8 LMS GT3. It will first see action at an upcoming event at the Chang Circuit in Buriram, Thailand.
Undeniably, pickup trucks are a serious business in Thailand, and it’s only a matter of time before Thai enthusiasts shift their attention to super truck racing. Spearheaded by the immense popularity of Thai Formula 1 driver Alex Albon for the Red Bull Racing team, we’re expecting to see more custom racing vehicles from the fastest-growing motorsports industry in South East Asia.