Shelby American, the company founded by Carroll Shelby and known for its Cobras, Mustangs, and, more recently, the Focus ST, has also built plenty of trucks. Shelby -- and F-150 -- fans may remember the F-150 Super Snake, the most recent previous high-performance pickup from the company.

Here is the latest pickup truck endeavor from Shelby -- the Shelby Raptor. This is the first time Shelby has designed a full package for the Raptor. It's also the first time the company has offered a package for an off-road-biased truck. John Luft, president of Shelby American, explains, "As a native Texan, Carroll Shelby loved powerful trucks. He connected his love for trucks with his passion for performance on several projects, with the first one over 30 years ago. The latest Shelby truck was created to conquer any terrain with serious velocity."

The Shelby Raptor is based on the 2013 Ford SVT Raptor. The engineers installed a 2.9-liter supercharger onto the Raptor's 6.2-liter V-8 and added a Borla exhaust as well. This combination helps take the engine output from 411 horsepower to a whopping 575 horses. The V-8 still works with stock elements of the Raptor, such as the six-speed automatic with manual shifting, and does not lose any capability off-road. The Shelby engineers made sure to use the Raptor's Off-Road mode to the truck's advantage. It makes the best use of stability control, traction control, and the transmission when driving at high speed off-road. Instead of fiddling with that and risking reducing the truck's amazing off-road capability, they improved the cooling, by installing an oversized intercooler, and handling of the truck to improve its durability in the dirt. Notes Luft, "In addition to the wheel and tire package, we're developing various handling options tailored to an owner's use of his truck, such as serious off-road versus more street driving. Those suspension packages will focus on the upper and lower control arms, shocks, and bushings."

While the performance is a major part of what makes a Shelby a Shelby, the other big part of the equation is styling. As you can see, this Raptor has benefited from the Shelby touch. This Ford sits on 35-inch BFGoodrich All-Terrain tires, wrapped around custom wheels that are an optional part of the Shelby package. For the outside of the truck, buyers have the choice of three Shelby graphics packages -- traditional Shelby, Shelby Splash, or Super Snake -- with plenty of styling cues that differentiate the truck from the rest of the Raptors on the road. There are Shelby touches on the heat extractors and on the rear window. The inside got the Shelby treatment as well, with a custom leather interior and boost and fuel pressure gauges. In addition, every one of the limited edition Shelby Raptors gets a unique badge, mounted above the glovebox, with that truck's serial number.

Shelby American is an interesting company: It isn't an in-house tuning division like SVT or SRT, but is involved with vehicle development a lot earlier than aftermarket companies are. So its products are better developed, and better integrated, than those of aftermarket companies.

This is a post-title package (the truck will be registered as a Ford SVT Raptor) that can be added to a Raptor for a starting price of $17,995. Of course, that price doesn't include the cost of the truck. Shelby is limiting production to 500 Shelby Raptors per model year. Each will be numbered and documented with its own Shelby CSM number, and that information will be entered into the official Shelby Registry. Shelby can also convert pre-2013 Raptors -- as long as they are powered by the 6.2-liter V-8. For those who are interested in ordering the Shelby Raptor, you can contact the sales team at 702/942-7325, or you can visit www.shelbyamerican.com.


2013 Shelby Raptor
BASE PRICE $62,620 (est)
LAYOUT Front-engine, 4WD, 5-pass, 4-door pickup
ENGINE 6.2L/575-hp/459-lb-ft SOHC 16-valve V-8
TRANSMISSION 6-speed automatic
WHEELBASE 144.5 in
LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT 133.5-145.2 x 86.3 x 78.5 in
CURB WEIGHT (F/R DIST) 6000-6200 lb (est)
GVWR 7000-7300 lb
PAYLOAD CAPACITY 1000-1100 lb
TOWING CAPACITY 6000-8000 lb
0-60 MPH 5.5 sec (est)
EPA CITY/HWY FUEL ECON 10/15 mpg (est)
CO2 EMISSIONS 1.65 lb/mi
ON SALE IN U.S. Summer 2013 (est)