Raptor Project Build

Twelve months on and we’ve resisted the urge to go the full monte on the Raptor, to tweak its already impressive foundations into a Super Tourer. But that’s all about to change with the fitting of a Lifestyle Stylecraft Canopy.

The Raptor comes out of the box with some impressive running gear – a strengthened chassis, suspension upgrade with Fox shocks and coils, touring seats and 33″ off road rubber. Putting power to the ground is a 2.0L bi-turbo diesel engine and ten speed auto transmission.

The Raptor’s suspension and ride offroad is nothing short of sublime. But the pumped suspension means the tub is a long way off the deck and loading from the sides is a big ask, even for my lanky 6’5″ frame.

Stylecraft Canopy: we’re correcting this issue by removing the ute tub and replacing it with a canopy or work body with large gull wing doors. Not only will this add an extra element of storage, it will improve access to all our gear.

The new Stylecraft range of canopies by Lifestyle Campers do exactly this. By removing the standard tub, the net weight gain of the canopy is only 60kg plus the fit-out, such as the water tank, storage drawers, auxiliary battery, switch gear and charging systems.

A Lifestyle Stylecraft Canopy will replace the ute tub

In addition to the canopy, we’ll enhance other areas including:

Suspension: our Reconn R2 adds about 200kg of downball weight to the Raptor’s rear coils, dropping the rear end by about 75mm. So we’ll be looking at a solution to counter the additional weight of the canopy and down ball weight.

Driving Lights: the standard lights are OK at best but lack any distance illumination for touring. And while we prefer not to travel at night, there are occasions when we do. Without a bull bar there are few options for auxiliary light mounting so we’ll need to look into this further.

UHF Radio: at the moment, we’re just using a 5W GME handheld without an external aerial. Works ok for close convoy work, but will need to be upgraded.

Long range tank: the Raptor has already been fitted with a Brown Davis 150L main diesel tank. We’re yet to reprogram the ECU for the increase, but it’s on the list.

Weight Management: the Raptor doesn’t have a huge payload, hence the resistance from fitting a bull bar so far, but we’ll see how we go.

Keep an eye out on this page for further updates.