The Ford Ranger, the midsize pickup truck, is back and it’s better than ever. It has been eight years since Ford produced a new Ranger. With half a million people buying mid-size pickups each year in North America, the automaker decided it is too lucrative a market segment to miss out on. Europe’s best-selling pickup truck, the Ranger is very popular worldwide. The new Ranger will be larger than its compact predecessor and have a number of other key changes inside and out that will make it perfectly suited for the American market.
The new Ranger that will be released in the American market will look slightly different from the one being sold elsewhere in the world. The grille, headlights and taillights have been changed and the hood is taller. Plus, for improved durability and crashworthiness, the American Ranger will have class-exclusive steel bumpers mounted directly on the frame. Built on a single wheelbase, it will be available in both the SuperCab and four-door SuperCrew cab configurations with two different bed lengths depending on which cab style buyers choose. This Ranger comes with a different tailgate which has a handle that’s mounted higher, F-150-style bed lights, along with available Sport and Chrome appearance packages which feature body-colored trim and widespread bling respectively. The FX4 Off-Road package with its part-time four-wheel drive, off-road shocks and tires, a steel skid plate at the front, steel underbody skid plates and trim accents in Magnetic Grey, is an available option on Ford Ranger’s three trims, the XL, XLT and Lariat.
The 2019 Ranger has a Sync 3 multimedia system, premium audio system from B&O, FordPass Connect Wi-Fi, 10-device capacity 4G LTE connectivity and two available gauge clusters: one features traditional gauges, the other has two reconfigurable display screens flanking a Ford-style central analog gauge. There’s also a center console with a sporty transmission lever. There are two small clamshell doors on the SuperCab Ranger along with two upright jump seats. The four-door SuperCrew model is roomier, seats five and has waterproof underseat storage in the second row. The XL and XLT models have hard plastic dash and doors, while the Lariat has a dash topper that’s padded with stitched faux-leather. Buyers can choose between Ebony and Medium Ash interior colors.
A Familiar Powertrain
When the 2019 Ford Ranger is launched it will be powered by the same combination of rear wheel drive, 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder EcoBoost engine and standard 10-speed automatic transmission found on the 2018 Mustang. The appropriate tuning and gear ratio changes make the set-up just right for truck duty and not burning up the track. Ford doesn’t say if they will release a diesel engine Ranger in the U.S., but in other markets around the globe a 3.2-liter, five-cylinder turbo-diesel engine is offered on Rangers. It’s also available on the newly introduced Ford Transit van. Although rear-wheel drive comes standard, there is also available part-time shift-on-the-fly four-wheel drive.
Driving Modes And Terrain Management System
The new Ranger also has a Dana electric-locking rear differential, a two-speed transfer case, along with Ford’s Terrain Management System. This allows drivers to choose from among Normal, Sand, Grass/Gravel/Snow and Mud/Ruts driving mode. Choosing Mud/Ruts and Sand modes automatically engages 4-High. Mud/Ruts mode gives all four wheel maximum power and in Sand mode the traction control system allows for the largest amount of slip before it engages. Four-wheel-drive models come equipped with Trail Control, a newly-created low-speed off-road cruise control system. At speeds between 1 and 20 miles per hour, it engages. It can also be slowed by applying the brake. On rugged terrain, rather than varying the throttle, drivers can focus on the road conditions.
The suspension of the Ranger features a dual A-arm, front coil springs and in the back a Dana rear axle which has leaf springs. There’s also a locking rear differential on the American model as well as a fully boxed frame. It also has electrically power-assisted steering. However, the new Ford Pro Trailer Backup Assist under development for use with the Ranger will not be available for a little while longer.
A Variety Of Safety Systems
There is a wide variety of electronic safety systems available on the new Ranger. Forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking are standard equipment. Ford’s blind spot warning system, which works in tandem with LED taillights and provides trailer coverage, will also be offered. The system allows owners to store three trailer profiles, choose the trailer length and extend the desired distance of the blind spot detection. The XLT and Lariat trims have lane departure warning as well as lane keep assist. The Lariat also comes with automatic cruise control.
If you want an innovative mid-size pickup, check out the 2019 Ford Ranger.