By on September 24, 2020


Seizing the opportunity to introduce another appearance package instead of building the Raptor version that everyone wants, Ford has introduced a new STX Special Edition Package on the 2021 Ranger.

Suits at the Blue Oval assert that roughly three-quarters of Ranger customers have appended appearance packages to their new trucks, making such additions to the order sheet an easy (and profitable) decision. Externally, the STX Special Appearance Package adds 18-inch black-painted wheels wrapped in meats sized 265/60 from an as-yet indeterminate supplier (zoom in and you’ll see the brand’s been scrubbed).

Inside, the package endows Ranger with a jazzy 8-inch center touch screen featuring satellite radio and Apple toys, dual-zone climate control, silver-painted interior accents, and privacy glass with rear defrost.

“Ranger customers are asking for new options to help make their trucks their own and we hear them,” explained a talking head from Ford marketing. “STX has been a strong seller on the base Ranger, but we’ve heard from some customers who want even more style and more tech in their XL trucks.”

It’s worth noting that fitting a Ranger with this STX Special Edition kit requires selection of the existing STX Appearance Package which bestows fog lamps, tow hooks, and slightly snazzier seats to Ford’s littlest pickup. Doing so adds $2,130 to the sticker price of a base Ranger XL since it forces one to also fit Equipment Group 101A that features the likes of cruise control and power mirrors.

In other words, this new $995 option will balloon the bottom line by well over three grand. This is good news for investors who like to see ever-climbing average transaction prices but bad news for anyone looking to keep a lid on payments. A no-options Ace of Base truck starts at $24,410.

Elsewhere in the Ranger wheelhouse, a Tremor off-road package was added earlier this year to tide over Blue Oval gearheads who were hoping for a Ranger Raptor before the next-gen truck arrives a couple of years from now. Those hopes continue to dim since, in addition to the Tremor, Ford is also exuberantly pushing a triumvirate of off-road performance packages bearing the designations of Levels 1 through 3.

[Images: Ford]

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22 Comments on “Pick-Up STX: Ford Adds Appearance Package to Ranger...”

  • avatar

    Keep your forced collectivist crew cabs and keep the G D proletariat out of my truck.

  • avatar

    I had an F-150 STX. It was a nice sporty appearance package to dress up the otherwise dull base truck

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    That does look nice. Even though it’s a big percentage adder, they’ll find many people willing to go for it.

  • avatar

    “Suits at the Blue Oval assert that roughly three-quarters of Ranger customers have appended appearance packages to their new trucks”

    The package looks fine, but keep in mind that “customers” means “car dealers”.

    • 0 avatar

      True but the dealer can only force so many upgrades before retail customers peace out.

      I was just there for the bland base supercab XL with base V8 and 4X4. Otherwise steelie wheels, crank windows, AM/FM and vinyl/rubber everywhere.

      But I basically tripped over a bright red STX supercab on the lot. It looks like a loaded Lariat, but was priced like a base XLT before rebates, etc.

      It was actually a demo with every possible STX option, plus a Ford bedliner and alarm they forgot to charge for. I haven’t seen another STX like it.

      I’d never heard of the STX, so dealers are wise to stock them. They’re meant blend into developments and not scream WORK TRUCK across the cul de sac.

      • 0 avatar

        The ‘almost mid-trim’ package has always been available on base cars a couple years into a model’s run.

        That’s what my current Compass is— add the appearance, technology and cold weather packages to a base trim car and .boom. saleable merchandise.

        In this last generation, it’s been basically the only way to get midlevel trim with a stickshift— just load-up a base model.

      • 0 avatar

        I’ve noticed my local dealer bringing in base model trucks with these sort of packages. It’s a wise move because there isn’t much of a price premium and it removes the fleet buyer cheapskate stigma from the purchase. I prefer the flat black grill over the fake chrome grill.

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    18-inch wheels on a pickup? I guess those are for the poseurs who’ll never use the Ranger as a pickup.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    “Ranger customers are asking for new options to help make their trucks their own…”

    Are you sure that the answer to their request is black wheels and silver interior trim?

    The base price might be $24,410 before D&D but add a second set of doors and 4×4 and the fees (but nothing else) and they are asking for $32,810 from you. I feel like that is the minimum need for most Ranger buyers. That’s quite a price jump.

    Built the way I would have it, which is 2 door, 4×4, STX, 101A which gives you remote locks and cruise control (!), a sliding rear window, and locking diff – it comes to $32,765.
    Similarly equipped with 4 doors that $35,585. That price difference strikes me as a fairly hefty 4-door tax.

    • 0 avatar

      I think Ford knows darn well most buyers want the 4 door and just uses the base stripper price for the “as low as” advertising hook. Ford is also aware that truck buyers love their add-on accessories and customizing various bits so this is just another box for them to check.

      I’m seriously considering a Ranger next spring, but will go straight to the Lariat Super Crew 2WD with 501A Tech package and Sport Appearance. I’d love to find one with electronic rear locker but you don’t see many 2WDs in that configuration. I am buying used thus may not get all my wishes.

  • avatar

    That interior is gross.

  • avatar

    Ford is experiencing success with lower cost Rangers. Not unexpected with Ranger as buyers with more cash move up to full size. Adding appeal to these entry level Rangers is a smart move by Ford.

    • 0 avatar

      It makes sense to have a nice option list and the ability to purchase a “small” truck with all the goodies available. It’s pure profit for the manufacturers and frankly, not everybody loves the bloat of today’s full size trucks.

  • avatar

    I recently sold my 17 Golf and leased a truck. I’m not a truck person, but I wanted something different. I don’t tow, camp or hunt or fish, nor do I off-road. I drove a used Ram V8 4×4 crew cab and it was wonderful, but it was huge and I don’t need that much truck. I don’t like GM, so Colorado/ Canyon were out. Tacoma still looks and behaves like the 2002 my brother had, see also Nissan Frontier. So I was down to the Ford camp and Honda Ridgeline.

    Ford has done this STX package on F150, so I drove a supercab STX 4×4 ( 2wd is a curse word for pickups in western PA). It wasn’t terrible, the 2.7 makes good power, the 10 speed auto is busy but works. The truck didn’t feel or look bad, nor did it look cheap or work truck-ish in STX trim. But I just didn’t need or want that much truck and the rear hinged supercab doors would be a pain in most parking lots. You never forgot you were driving a large truck.

    Ranger was ok, but I could paid nearly the same for the Ranger on lease (or buy) as I would have with an F150 because of incentives. Coming out of a VW into a Ranger, the Rangers interior looked and felt cheap, wasn’t particularly roomy or comfortable. The ride was bouncy, not something I wanted for my occasional 4 hour highway drives.

    This STX 4×4 crew cab package was minimally equipped and still 34k. It’s not crank windows and no air like it was in the day, but it’s still not what , in my mind, a 34k vehicle is supposed to be. That’s about 4K too high really and it only gets worse from there in XLT or Lariat trim. Ranger below 35k is a decent value, above that is BS.

    So, I have a Ridgeline lease on the RTLE trim, which lacks nothing and gives me versatile “truck” I wanted without being too truckish. It’s a suburban dad truck and I’m fine with it.

    • 0 avatar

      The bouncy ride seems to be a common Ranger complaint. I think this is one of those things that resulted from it being the “global” platform. In other parts of the world this Ranger is a cheap work vehicle. Here in the states Ford put in a nicer interior, various appearance upgrades and some decent tech options. However under the lipstick its a 3rd world truck. In particular it the rear suspension is compromised. Its strong suit is the HP/TQ of the boosted engine and 10 speed combo when compared to the competition.

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