Ford Prepares to Throttle Up Ranger Production

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

Early demand and the promise of more eager customers flooding dealers has Ford ratcheting up production of its new midsize Ranger pickup. Starting in February (probably next week), the company’s Wayne Assembly plant will put the pedal down.

Kumar Galhotra, head of Ford’s North American operations, says the automaker anticipates “massive overtime.”

Speaking to Bloomberg on Wednesday, Galhotra said the Ranger, which started production in late October and hit dealer lots earlier this month, is selling well out of the gate. The company unloaded 1,200 examples after two weeks on lots, he said.

“The demand is going to be so strong, that starting in February, just in a few days, our Wayne Assembly plant where this product is made will be going into massive overtime,” Galhotra said. “That is fantastic news.”

Ford believes the early demand isn’t just owners of 2011 Rangers eager to swap into something new. For what it’s worth, the company recorded expressions of interest from 300,000 would-be buyers.

Midsize pickups had a very good year in 2018, with the Toyota Tacoma posting an annual sales gain of 24 percent. General Motors’ midsize twins, the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, rose 19.3 and 4.3 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, the ancient Nissan Frontier ended the year up 7.1 percent. Buyers want trucks of any size and description, at the expense of fast-declining car models.

It’s no wonder, then, that Ford now pumps 90 percent of its capital expenditure into trucks, SUVs, and crossovers. The automaker celebrated 2018 by ditching all passenger car models save for the Mustang.

[Image: Ford]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • AdamOfAus AdamOfAus on Jan 31, 2019

    Nice its built in the US, but Thai made content would have to be pretty high.

  • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on Jan 31, 2019

    The bottom 2/3 of these comments can best be summed up as "Haters gon' hate"

    • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Feb 01, 2019

      I actually like it, I'd just like to see some more options. I like the 6' bed on my Tacoma DoubleCab, and would like to see it on the Ranger. The Colorado/Canyon offer that, but I'd rather have the Ranger.