Ch-Ch-Changes: Chinese Raptor Has Subtle Differences

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Raptor Debut in China

One of the big reasons why I am a modern-day Ford fan is due to the One Ford global initiative. This means that all of the great products that are sold elsewhere in the world have a really good chance of being sold here in the United States, and vehicles like the Mustang and new Raptor are exported elsewhere across the globe. But even then, different countries have different rules regarding what makes vehicles street-legal, and vehicles have subtle differences between markets.

The new Ford Mustang

Before delving into some of the noticeable changes on the Raptor, the most obvious vehicle that seems some cosmetic changes for foreign markets is the Mustang. In Europe, the Mustang’s rear taillights are clear instead of red, and function differently than the sequential US-spec versions.

After spending arguably way too much time staring at the Ford Raptor photos on the Chinese press release, I noticed something different. Mainly, the headlights. Here is how the US-spec headlights like on the most-recent pictures of the Raptor that we have (click for larger size);

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As you can see, the Raptor has the same headlights as a normal F-150 with LED headlights has. But now here are the headlights up close from the Chinese-spec version (click for larger size);

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We reached out to Ford to see if these changes on this most recent Ford Raptor was something that was going to change across the board, but were told that these headlights are specific to the Chinese market. They are HID headlights instead of LEDs, and that the Raptor sold in the US will retain the LED headlights that we’re accustomed to seeing.

Also, it appears some of the auxiliary lighting is different. For example, you’ll notice where there’d be an amber light on the Chinese version there is just a blank cover. If you look on the roof, front and back, you’ll notice additional auxiliary lighting there, as seen below close up;

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Of course there are no major technical changes between the markets for the trucks. They’ll all still have the Fox Racing suspension. They’ll have the multi-setting terrain response system. They’ll have the K02 tires. But, due to official government rules in different markets, there will be some subtle differences.

I have to admit, that while I do prefer the idea of LED headlights, I do think the HID setup on the Chinese Raptor looks pretty cool. From these photos it looks like there’s a surround around the projector assembly that glows, giving it a signature look. While I wouldn’t give up the durability of LED lighting, I could potentially see American Raptor fans getting ahold of these Chinese lights and adding them to their own Raptor for a unique look.

It surely wouldn’t be the first time that we would covet something that we can’t have. Just look at the Scion FR-S drivers who rebadge their cars as Toyotas, as one of many examples.

What do you think? Let us know over in the forums!

Chad Kirchner is a regular contributor to Corvette Forum and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other auto sites.

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