SEMA 2018: BDS Suspension Rolls Out The Ranger X

The 2019 Ford Ranger is commanding everyone’s attention at this year’s SEMA Show, and one of the biggest attractions is thanks to BDS Suspension. Its recent build of a Ranger – the Ranger X – in collaboration with Ford, has produced an unforgettable truck. We got with BDS’s Carter Reed to find out more.

“We were very pumped to do this build,” beamed Reed. “In my opinion, it’s the coolest one here. We did it in five weeks, and we built it differently from anyone else, making it more than just lift-kit-wheels-tires-etc. We built it for a purpose.”

The Ranger X is a radical interpretation of a 2019 Ford Ranger. This build uses a utility box and 6 inches of lift to make it work as both a chase and overlanding vehicle.

That purpose, as we learned, was twofold. One was to make the truck utilitarian and useful, and on the flipside, adventurous and ready for anything. “We combined overlanding with motorsports,” as Reed put it.

To that end, BDS had to cut the truck and add a foot of steel to the frame. “We did that on day one of having the truck. It only had three miles on it,” said Reed. “Once we had that extra strength there, we went ahead and put on a Knapheide utility box.”

The BDS build team welded an additional 12 inches of steel to the frame. This helped with fitting on a Knapheide utility box in the rear.

The suspension rocks a prototype BDS kit, adding 6 inches to the ride height, along with heavy-duty front upper control arms. Shocks are from FOX, and are 2.5-inch-diameter Factory Race Series with remote reservoir coilovers on the front, and piggyback reservoirs on the rear. Air ride suspension levels out the heavy box, and is provided by Air Lift.

The wheels and tires are 17-inch KMC XD Grenade beadlocks and 35-inch BF Goodrich KM3s. Around the truck are Rigid Industries lights, spare fuel packs from RotopaX, and matte black and fiery orange graphics.

As for the powertrain, BDS stuck with the factory 2.3-liter EcoBoost and 10-speed automatic transmission. “It was just like the Raptor, you know, worrying about it hunting for gears, but it drives incredibly well, even with our weight added to it,” said Reed. “We might re-gear the axles so they can deal with the extra items, but it gets out of its own way for now.”

With FOX coilovers and piggyback reservoirs, as well as Air Lift air springs, the Ranger X has no trouble riding balanced.

Summing it up, Reed said, “It’s the ultimate adventure rig with room for four.” He told us that he and some coworkers plan to “split off from the rest of the BDS team after SEMA is over and take it off-roading to see how it does.” Given the amount of work and upgrades that went into it, we don’t think the Ranger X will slouch!

For more information on BDS Suspension and what it does for the off-road crowd, go check out the company’s website and Facebook page.

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About the author

David Chick

David Chick comes to us ready for adventure. With passions that span clean and fast Corvettes all the way to down and dirty off-road vehicles (just ask him about his dream Jurassic Park Explorer), David's eclectic tastes lend well to his multiple automotive writing passions.
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