Now that the 2020 Ford Kuga (Escape in other markets) is out and about, people are already imagining all sorts of interesting derivatives based on the compact crossover. Looking more car-like than ever before, the fourth generation has already been digitally imagined with an ST personality, but would it work as a Raptor? X-Tomi Design wanted to explore the idea of a rugged, high-performance variant and fired up Photoshop to create a hypothetical Kuga Raptor.
Mind you, Ford has already announced an off-road version of the new Kuga is on the agenda. Not only that, but the Blue Oval has said we’ll see it in about six months, complete with a boxier shape, an increased ground clearance, wider tracks, and a more upright windscreen. Could this render see into the future of the Kuga? The answer would have to be no, because the model Ford was talking about is expected to be the baby Bronco.
Nevertheless, we can still dream about a Kuga Raptor to join the F-150 Raptor and the Ranger Raptor which arrives in the UK later this year. With a lifted suspension, chunky off-road tyres, and black plastic body cladding, it would follow in the footsteps of the not-for-UK EcoSport Storm, an off-road-ready version of Ford’s subcompact crossover sold in Brazil.
Since nothing can stop us from dreaming, the Kuga Raptor would get the turbocharged 2.3-litre EcoBoost engine from the new Focus ST. The hot hatch has 276 bhp and 310 pound-feet of torque and is offered in a hatchback and estate alongside a punchy 2.0-litre diesel producing 187 bhp and 295 lb-ft. A diesel might make more sense thanks to the better low-rpm torque and would echo the Range Raptor as that one also is a diesel, packing a twin-turbo 2.0-litre pushing out 210 bhp and 369 lb-ft.
Make it happen, Ford.