Port Elizabeth - Back in November Ford South Africa announced it would be investing another R3 billion in expanding its South African production capacity. This would include production of the much-anticipated Raptor version of the Ranger, due in 2019, at the Silverton plant in Gauteng.

Now Ford SA has announced that, as part of that aforementioned investment, it will also be building the Raptor’s advanced new 2-litre twin-turbodiesel engine at its Struandale facility in the Eastern Cape.

The Raptor is one of eight derivatives that will be powered by the new 2-litre engine, and although Ford remains tight-lipped about the new versions, a company spokesperson told us that it will complement rather than replace the current 3.2-litre engine. 

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Ford is currently installing a new high-tech assembly line for the 2-litre diesel engine in a revamped section of the Struandale factory ahead of it going into production in the fourth quarter of this year. 

It will form part of a dual-engine strategy for the plant as Ford is also expanding production of the current 2.2-litre Duratorq TDCi motor to meet increased export demand - including additional contracts from three European markets.

In total 22 new four-cylinder engine derivatives will be exported to European markets, some even for use in front-wheel-drive Transit models, while overall assembly capacity will grow from 115 000 to 130 000 engine a year. 

ALSO READ: Under the skin of the new Ford Ranger Raptor

IOL Motoring