No replacement for displacement, you say? Say no more because Hennessey Performance Engineering has shown what forced induction can do with a simple, straight-line drag race.
On one side sits the 2014 Ford F-150 VelociRaptor from HPE, which features a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine. On the other side is a brand new, 2017 Ford F-150 VelociRaptor with its 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 engine. Both engines come from Ford directly, but Hennessey has modified and tuned each to produce 600 horsepower.
So, what are the official results? The 2017 F-150 VelociRaptor pulls away with gusto and the supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 never makes a comeback. The 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 outguns the older 6.2-liter V-8 from all directions—even from the factory, it makes more horsepower and substantially more torque (450 hp and 510 pound-feet) than the previous F-150 Raptor's V-8 engine (411 hp and 434 lb-ft). Though, like Ken Block, we do miss the V-8 engine's soundtrack.
In either case, HPE has created a couple of monsters. The latest HPE VelociRaptor produces the previously mentioned 600 hp, but also churns out 611 pound-feet of torque. In a quarter-mile race, the HPE VelociRaptor will also pull eight truck lengths on a factory F-150 Raptor. So, yes, it's very, very fast.
If buyers can let go of their V-8 engines, the 2017 HPE VelociRaptor is certainly the better truck from a performance standpoint.
But, power isn't everything. There's no denying the older F-150 Raptor has a lot of burly character.