Seven years ago, Ford stopped selling the Ranger mid-sized pickup in the United States, claiming there was no longer a market for it. But while the F-150 shouldered most of the pickup duties and held down the title of the best-selling truck stateside, the Ranger went on to become the best selling pickup in Europe. The only problem is that the F-150 has grown in size to the point where it only feels comfortable out in the country, where there’s no traffic and parking isn’t an issue. For 2019 the Ranger is back, and it’s here to finally give the American people what they’ve been asking for for years: a pickup that can fit in a suburban garage.
In the intervening seven years, Toyota undoubtedly dominated the mid-sized pickup segment with the Tacoma. Although the GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado have picked up the domestic-truck slack in recent years, American pickup fans have been salivating at the idea of the Ford Ranger’s return. The reliability and versatility of the F-150 is what makes it a best seller, but putting all that in a more manageable, smaller package that’s easier to maneuver in parking lots and traffic and can park in a normal garage is vital if Ford wants to hold on to the broader customer base.
At its core, the new Ranger has an old-school, tough-as-nails ladder-on-frame architecture which will help the new pickup when it inevitably gets taken off-road or gets put to work towing. Up front, the mid-sized pickup gets Ford’s turbocharged 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder, which doesn’t sound like the most intimidating engine — but keep in mind that in the Ford Explorer, it’s good for 280 hp and 310 lb-ft. If the Ranger is as light as it’s expected to be, that should be plenty of shove.
Pricing isn’t confirmed yet, but it’s a safe bet that the Ranger will sit below the F-150 in the low-to-mid-$20,000 range. The most exciting prospect with the new Ranger platform is the inevitable Raptor Ranger. There hasn’t been a concrete confirmation, but now that the Ranger has come home to the U.S, and considering how popular the Raptor F-150 has been, it’s a no-brainer.
The Ranger We’re Really Waiting For
The Ranger is U.S.-bound in 2019; hopefully this version comes with it. Read the Story