Introduced in 1982, the Ranger has long been a staple of American farming and country life. Originally a compact pickup truck to compete with the Chevrolet S10, it grew over the years as Americans’ needs and imaginations grew. The current/outgoing Ranger was actually launched internationally in 2011, but wasn’t available for the US and Canadian markets until 2018.
The new Ranger unveiled tonight is a massive redesign of the old truck. It’s not exactly a clean slate, but the truck has received an impressive facelift with LED headlights and an F150 grille to give it a modern look that matches the corporate DNA. It’s not unattractive, I’ll say that.
The main news is the powertrains that can be ordered for the new Ranger. While the old Ranger was available with a 2.3-liter Ecoboost in the US and two diesel options for the rest of the world, you now get a choice of three different diesel engines, including a top-spec 3-liter V6 turbodiesel and single and twin- turbo version of the 2-liter inline four-cylinder engine. It doesn’t look like the US market will get these diesel variants, but we’ll have to wait and see. All engines will work with either an updated 10-speed automatic or the proven 6-speed manual. Obviously, engine and transmission combinations will depend on the market.
There have been rumors that there will be a plug-in hybrid, or perhaps even an all-electric version of the BEV, to follow what Ford is doing with the F150 lineup. Honestly, I could see the Ranger PowerBoost suiting most American pickup buyers, so it’s a shame no such truck was even teased at this launch. Ford says it’s increased the engine bay for this truck to “future-proof,” so expect a hybrid model to arrive soon.
However, the next-gen Ranger Raptor was teased a bit in a video, and it seems likely that it will finally arrive in America. Potentially with 2.7 Ecoboost power?
Ford is very proud of the new additions to the Ranger design. There are some neat toe supports in the back behind the wheel to help with climbing. The bed is much more versatile, with plenty of storage and mounting accessories, as well as a built-in work table in the tailgate and plenty of places to connect equipment to 110V outlets. Inside, you get wireless charging points and a large new vertical touchscreen for the infotainment system.
There’s no word yet on pricing or availability for the next-gen Ranger, but considering the fact that Ford sells this truck in 180 different countries around the world, it’s a pretty big launch for them, and we can only hope they don’t. screw it up like they recently did with the F150 and Bronco (to name two).