The journey to owning a dream vehicle can be filled with both triumphs and challenges. Daniel Song’s experience with his 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor is a testament to the power of perseverance and the remarkable overland and off-road community. 

Starting with a delivery process that tested his patience, Daniel’s story takes a remarkable turn when he receives support from the online community and turns a negative experience into a positive impact. This unexpected generosity leads to an opportunity to acquire the highly coveted Bronco Raptor and sets him on a path to discover a newfound passion for overland and off-roading.



The Markup
His story began with an initial reservation for the coveted Bronco First Edition. Unfortunately, the delivery process turned into a nightmare as he was coerced into paying a $5,000 markup by the local dealership, despite being promised an MSRP sales price.

Determined not to lose his opportunity at the First Edition he had patiently waited for, Daniel took to social media to share his experience, which garnered significant support and attention. Through his perseverance and the power of social media, he managed to convince the dealership to do the right thing, eventually securing $5,000 in gift cards to buy toys for charity.


Admittingly new to the world of overlanding and off-roading, Daniel saw the Bronco as the perfect vehicle to explore this new realm of adventure. Coming from a background of building sport compact tuner vehicles and privateer race cars, he quickly discovered the distinct joys of traversing technical trails with patience and the relaxed energy of the overlanding community.

The Bronco Raptor became his gateway to a whole new world of automotive passion, introducing him to wonderful people, companies, and a wealth of knowledge.


An Inside Connection
Months later, when Ford announced the Bronco Raptor, Daniel jokingly expressed his desire for an allocation on social media. To his surprise, one of his followers, who happened to work for Jay Leno’s garage, made a few phone calls to Ford to see if he could make it happen.

Miraculously, Daniel received an email from Ford’s internal VIP marketing team, granting him an allocation for the Bronco Raptor. The follower explained that Daniel’s story of generosity and turning a negative situation into a positive outcome had inspired him to help.


While acquiring the Bronco Raptor was a triumph, it also came with its fair share of challenges. Delays from the Michigan Assembly Plant shortened the original 4-month build time leading up to SEMA 2022, where he planned to showcase his newly acquired and soon to be modified vehicle, to a mere 42 days.

Despite the tight deadline, Daniel managed to accomplish almost 90% of his goals for the build. With the support and collaboration of his sponsors and partners, they developed a new exhaust system, confirmed bumper fitment, and modified skid plates to accommodate Ford’s subtle revisions to the Raptor’s frame.


Something New
While modifying vehicles isn’t anything new for Daniel, having built a solid stable of show and race cars throughout the years, this was his first foray in building an off-road capable vehicle. The build project began on the first day of receiving the Bronco Raptor. Thankfully, he didn’t embark on this journey alone and partnered with a team of experts assisting him throughout the process.


405 Motoring played a crucial role by performing a full XPEL Stealth PPF on the Bronco Raptor’s body. They also helped with the initial installation of the Addictive Desert Design bumpers and the Warn VR Evo 12-S winch paired with a Warn Epic Winch Hook and Shackles.


Addictive Desert Design bumper


An ARB Twin Compressor-powered Sponsored By Wifey Air System handles the BRaptor’s tire air up and down duties.

Al from Sponsored By Wifey handled all the Baja Designs lighting, ARB compressor wiring, and electrical work. Additionally, Chuck and Rowie from Showstoppers Offroad provided valuable guidance and expertise in selecting the right parts for the vehicle.


BOLD Performance Exhaust

Under the hood, the 2022 Bronco Raptor features a 3.0L twin-turbo engine that produces approximately 434 horsepower, thanks to various performance modifications. These include a BOLD Performance Exhaust, a DTE Systems Tune, a DTE Systems Pedal Box Commander, a Whipple Intercooler, a Turbosmart Blow Off Valve, and an Eventuri Carbon Fiber Intake (currently in the prototype phase).


Front and rear suspension features the Raptor HOSS 4.0 system with Fox Live Valve dampening.

The transmission and differentials remain stock, but the suspension system receives significant upgrades. The front and rear suspension features the Raptor HOSS 4.0 system with Fox Live Valve dampening. The front suspension integrates reservoirs, while the rear suspension utilizes remote reservoirs, enhancing the vehicle’s off-road capabilities.


Looking Outward
When it comes to the exterior, Daniel’s Bronco Raptor maintains its aggressive factory appearance with OEM Bronco Raptor-specific grille, hood, headlights, and taillights. However, a range of aftermarket modifications adds functionality and ruggedness. The Baja Designs OnX6 40” LED Light Bar is mounted to the roof rack, providing excellent visibility in low-light conditions.


Baja Designs lighting and a WARN winch feature prominently on the BRaptor’s frontend.

Another Baja Designs OnX6 20” LED Combo Light is mounted in the bumper, serving as additional illumination. Various other Baja Designs lights, such as the LP6 Pro Driving Light, XL80 A-Pillar Light Kit, and LED Rock Light Kit, contribute to a well-lit adventure. All the lighting components are connected to the factory Upfitter Auxiliary Switches, ensuring seamless integration.

With an import tuning background it’s no surprise that he elected to run Rays Japan 57DR-X 18x9 wheels finished in gunmetal wrapped with Toyo Tires Open Country M/T Tires in 37x12.50R18 providing ample grip and durability for off-road excursions.


These 18” Rays Japan 57DR-X wheels are wrapped with 37” Toyo Tires Open Country M/T Tires.

Providing the ability to air up and down directly at all four corners is an ARB On-Board Air Twin Compressor mounted with a Desert Does It Cargo Compressor Mount. This is all possible with a Sponsored by Wifey air system, which is a 4-corner quick connect air up and down system for speed and convenience. It takes only about 3-4 minutes to air down and about 5 minutes to air up to get back on the road.


Looking Inward
The interior was outfitted with JCR Rear MOLLE Window Panels, Rear Upper Shelf Kit, and Bulkhead Panels for storage of camping and other accessories.


In addition, Goose Gear provided their Rear Plate System, Solo Fridge Slider XL, and Fridge Straps to hold an ICECO VL45 Pro Fridge. Extra protection is given to the seats by Mabett All Weather Rear Seat Covers. It’s all in the details as he added Fero Machines Door Sill Protectors and “The Void” Pockets, which creates an interior pocket for items in the door sill.


The ICECO VL45 Pro Fridge sits on a Goose Gear Solo Fridge Slider XL and is secured with Goose Gear Fridge Straps.

Additionally, storage is not an issue, thanks to the Pelican BX140R and Pelican BX90R cargo cases mounted on a Prinsu Roof Rack. The rack also houses a collection of Prinsu accessories including Prinsu’s Quick Release awning mount with an Area BFE awning, Maxtrax mount with a pair of Maxtrax recovery boards, GoPro Mount, High Jack Mount that holds a Hi-Lift X-treme Jack, and Ridgeline Handles.


Final Thoughts
Beyond the vehicle itself, Daniel realized that the world of overlanding is as much about the experiences shared with friends in the great outdoors as it is about the vehicle that gets you there. The Bronco Raptor became the gateway to exciting adventures, from tackling technical trails to exploring picturesque locations across Southern California. Daniel’s wife, who has always been a truck/SUV enthusiast, now finds herself behind the wheel of the Raptor more often, captivated by its capability and rugged charm. 

When asked what he would do differently if given the chance to start over, Daniel expressed immense satisfaction with how everything came together. The Bronco Raptor, even in its stock form, exudes an incredible presence on the road. The added gear only enhances its rugged and capable appearance, reaffirming Daniel’s decision to embark on this unforgettable journey.

For more on Daniel Song of DRVNmind, check out his social media accounts at @drvn.daniel and @drvnmind.


 Daniel Song’s 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor 
 Base Vehicle   2022 Ford Bronco Raptor
 Engine  3.0L EcoBoost V6 Twin Turbo, BOLD Performance Exhaust, DTE Systems Tune, DTE Systems Pedal Box Commander, Whipple Intercooler, Turbosmart Blow Off Valve, prototype Eventuri Carbon Fiber Intake
 Suspension  Front— Raptor HOSS 4.0 system with Fox Live Valve dampening with integrated reservoirs in front; Rear— Raptor HOSS 4.0 system with Fox Live Valve dampening with remote reservoirs in front 
 Wheels & Tires  Rays Japan 57DR-X, Gunmetal (18x9 at 0 offset); Toyo Tires Open Country M/T (37x1350R18)
 Armor & Racks  Addictive Desert Design (A.D.D.) Rock Fighter front bumper, A.D.D. Rock Fighter rear bumper, A.D.D. Rock Fighter front skid plate, Prinsu Roof Rack, Prinsu Quick Release Awning Mount, Prinsu Maxtrax Mount, Prinsu Go Pro Mount, Prinsu High Jack Mount, Prinsu Ridgeline Handles
 Recovery  Warn VR Evo 12-S and Warn Epic Winch Hook, Epic Shackles
 Body  FULL XPEL Matte Stealth paint protection film, DRVNmind Custom Livery
 Storage  Pelican BX140R and Pelican BX90R cargo cases
 Lighting  Baja Design OnX6 40” LED Light Bar (mounted to roof rack), Baja Design OnX6 20” LED Combo Light (mounted in bumper), Baja Design LP6 Pro Driving Light (mounted to bumper), Baja Designs XL80 A-Pillar Light Kit, Baja Designs LED Rock Light Kit, All of the lighting package is tied into the factory Upfitter Auxiliary Switches
 Upgrades & Accessories   Area BFE awning, Maxtrax Recovery Boards, Hi-Lift X-TREME Jack, JCR Rear MOLLE Window Panels, JCR Rear Upper Shelf Kit, JCR Bulkhead Panel, Desert Does It Cargo Compressor Mount, ARB On-Board Air Twin Compressor, Sponsored by Wifey Air System, Goose Gear Rear Plate System, Goose Gear Solo Fridge Slider XL, Goose Gear Fridge Straps, ICECO VL45s Pro Fridge, Fero Machines Door Sill Protector, Fero Machines “The Void” Pockets, Mabett All Weather Rear Seat Covers

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This article originally appeared in OVR Issue 04. For more informative articles like this, consider subscribing to OVR Magazine in print or digital versions here. You can also find the print edition of OVR at your local newsstand by using our Magazine Finder.