Thriftpower: Ford Touts 2019 Ranger's Stingy Fuel Economy

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
thriftpower ford touts 2019 rangers stingy fuel economy

Matthew Guy’s going to be mighty disappointed if this is all the big Ford truck news we receive this week. On the same week Ford rolled out its first drive event for the upcoming Ranger pickup, the Blue Oval revealed official fuel economy numbers for the four-cylinder-only midsizer — though specs already leaked last month.

Yes, it’s true. As you might have anticipated, the 2.3-liter Ecoboost four-banger and 10-speed automatic combo beneath the Ranger’s hood returns class-leading combined fuel economy. For a gasoline engine, that is.

The boasting is endless for this truck, which should begin appearing on dealer lots within a month’s time. First, it was power: 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft. That torque figure beats ’em all in the midsize field. Then, max payload and towing: 1,860 pounds and 7,500 pounds, respectively. Again, class-leading, but there’s an asterisk hovering over all of these figures, just as there is for the Ranger’s fuel economy — it only applies to gas-powered pickups.

Ford cites an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 21 mpg city, 26 mpg highway, and 23 mpg combined for 4×2 versions of the 2019 Ranger. Add four-wheel drive and the figure drops to 20/24/22.

Oh, how Ford wishes General Motors didn’t sell the Chevrolet Colorado with an optional 2.8-liter Duramax diesel. That model outpulls, outcarries, and outtows the Ranger, and matches its rival’s combined fuel economy. It also tops the Ford by 4 mpg on the highway.

Still, Ford’s accomplishment is notable, as it beats any other gas-powered competitor by at least 1 mpg in combined driving. Looking at 2WD models (in combined driving), the Colorado with 2.5-liter four-cylinder gets 22 mpg, while the 3.6-liter model gets 20 mpg. Toyota’s Tacoma, in 2.7-liter guise, tops out at 21 mpg, as does the 3.5-liter version, while the Nissan Frontier sees a rating of 21 mpg for manual 2.5-liter variants and 19 mpg for the big, 4.0-liter six.

The Ranger trounces its 87 octane rivals in city and highway fuel economy, as well. Same story for 4WD versions.

If green living is a big part of your lifestyle, you’ll need to first decide whether your wallet holds enough of the green stuff before pulling the trigger on a purchase. Given that some of its rivals boast lower MSRPs, it could be a while before you realize those savings at the pump.

[Images: Ford Motor Company]

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  • R Henry R Henry on Dec 11, 2018

    Comparing a diesel and gas truck doesn't bring any clarity. The purchade prices ate not comparsble and the fuel price is not comparable either. It is like comparing a hamburger patty with a filet mignon.

    • JD-Shifty JD-Shifty on Dec 11, 2018

      you might to contemplate a healthier diet, if you're the typical demographic here

  • JD-Shifty JD-Shifty on Dec 11, 2018

    want to see something interesting, look up used prices on 1st generation Colorado with the 5.3 V8. Last made in 2011, they seem to go for about 20k with less than a hundred thousand miles.

  • Conundrum Can't see that the Espada chassis had much to do with the Miura. The Miura had a rear-mounted transverse V12 with the transmission and final drive all part of the engine block. So it's a bit of a stretch saying the north-south V12 and regular transmission Espada chassis was related to the Miura. It looks to be no more than an update of the 400 GT. And short and long-arm independendent suspension was hardly unique -- a '53 Chev had that in front, it was standard for years on most cars that didn't have Mac struts. The Brits call SLA suspension double wishbone, so Honda thought that sounded more mysterious than SLA and used that terminology in ads, but it's the same thing. Only a few mid '30s cars had same length upper and lower A-arms like a '36 Chev, before the obvious advantage of a short upper arm for camber control was introduced. Of course Ford used a dead beam front axle until 1949, so it was last to climb out of the stone age.Do you have a link to a reference that says the Miura and Espada chassis were related?
  • FreedMike One of the things that we here in North America often forget about Europe is that it's a COMPLETELY different world to drive in. Imagine driving in the downtown area of the city you live in 24/7, and never leaving it, and you have a decent simulation of what it's like to drive in a place like Paris, or London, or Rome - or Manhattan, for that matter. As far as the "dystopia" is concerned, I don't really see it that way. This isn't made for people living in the 'burbs - it's for urban dwellers. And for that application, this car would be about perfect. The big question is how successful the effort to provide large-scale EV charging in urban areas will be.
  • Matzel I am hoping that Vee-Dub will improve the UX and offer additional color options for the 2024 Mk8.5 refresh for Canada. Until then, I'll be quite happy with my '21 GTI performance pack. It still puts a smile on my face going through the twisty bits.
  • Stanley Steamer There have been other concepts with BYOT, that I have always thought was a great idea. Replacing bespoke parts is expensive. If I can plug in a standard 17" monitor to serve as my instrument panel, as well as speakers, radio, generic motors, batteries, I'm for it. Cheaper repair, replacement, or upgrade costs. Heck I'd even like to put in my own comfy seats. My house didn't come with a built in LaZboy. The irony is that omitting these bespoke items at the point of sale allows me to create a more bespoke car as a whole. It's hard to imagine what an empty rolling monocoque chassis would look like capable of having powertrains and accessories easily bolted on in my garage, but something like the Bollinger suv comes to mind.
  • Iam65689044 Sometimes I'm glad the French don't sell in America. This is one of those times.