2021 F-150 Raptor takes inspiration from its aviation namesake

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Tom Liu is a Raptors fan. The four-wheeled variety. The winged version. The veloci type? Perhaps.

So it’s no surprise that Liu, the 30-year-old senior exterior designer of the Ford F-150 Raptor 2021, turned to the F-22 fighter for inspiration when designing the latest iteration of the Ford truck.

“The military and active US veterans are a great customer base for us on the F-150 Raptor, so I wanted to bring the spirit of the F-22 Raptor on board with this third generation,” said Liu, a native of. Guangzho, China, who credits WWII volunteer “Flying Tigers” with saving the lives of family members.

“Working on an icon like this really means the world to me.”

Liu with his design. (Courtesy of Ford)

Liu’s enthusiasm for automotive and aircraft design set in at an early age, he said, when as a child he dove into building one model airplane after another. After immigrating to the United States in 2016, Liu landed a dream job at Ford as a designer, a role that ultimately saw him design the third generation of the truck that wowed him years earlier with its ” protruding fenders and big, fleshy tires. ,” he said.

In the beast built to fly through the desert in triple digits or climb just about any obstacle, Liu finally saw a chance to combine his two loves.

Among the many hunter-inspired features of the F-150 Raptor, perhaps the most important are the truck’s air vents, designed to mimic the intimidating front intakes of the F-22. The hood air extractor and grille design also echo elements of the world-famous aircraft.

Graphic image of F-22 inspired graphics.  (Courtesy of Ford)
Graphic image of F-22 inspired graphics. (Courtesy of Ford)

Additionally, one of the truck’s graphics packages features an “FP GN03” wing logo and an American flag, a nod to the nomenclature of the F-22’s vertical stabilizers.

As a fun little Easter egg inclusion, this code can be scanned using a smartphone’s QR reader, taking the owner straight to the Ford Performance website.

Unrelated to the F-22 but nonetheless a fun detail, the aforementioned graphics package also includes terrain contour lines and a route map of the Baja 1000 based in Mexico, a tribute to the origins of racing in the Raptor Desert.

Graphics inspired by Baja 1000. (Courtesy of Ford)
Graphics inspired by Baja 1000. (Courtesy of Ford)

“Ford is known for its heritage of great innovation and design, and the F-22 Raptor brings the same design and development pride to our country,” said OJ Sanchez, former F-22 pilot and current director. General of Lockheed Martin’s F -22 program.

“I think it’s the perfect match, and it’s humiliating that the F-150 shares the Raptor namesake.”

Check out Tom Liu’s “A Tale of Two Raptors” effort in the video below. And for a full list of F-150 Raptor specs, Click here.



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