You know you’re getting old when you start using phrases like “back in my day” on the regular. Indeed, as I’m rounding my fortieth lap of the sun, I find myself reminiscing entirely too much. And, considering this tidy second career I’ve picked out, it’s not surprising that my daydreams revert all too often to vehicles of my youth.
Back in my day (there it is) compact pickup trucks were everywhere. Every mainstream automaker had one – occasionally, it was a rebadged import, but it was an important segment in which to compete. The Ranger was just another player in a crowded marketplace.
These days, the compact pickup doesn’t exist in North America. The midsize truck is the new hotness, but even this segment is relatively immature. Ford looked at its overseas portfolio and saw a model that could readily be adapted – thus, the 2019 Ford Ranger seen here. Is the Ranger competitive with the stalwarts, or is it a matter of too midsize, too late?
If you’re holding off on purchasing a new Ford Ranger based on what you read here last Thursday, consider this a green light for your trip to the dealership. The new-for-2019 Ranger does not — repeat, does not — require the removal of the left front wheel in order to access the oil filter.
Ever swapped out the battery in a cloud-car Chrysler, or maybe an old Sebring or PT Cruiser? You’ll be reminded of that when the time comes to change your new-generation Ford Ranger’s oil, assuming you’re a proud member of the DIY crowd.
Job One for those looking to freshen the Ranger’s internal lubricant, besides heading to the store for a couple of jugs of synthetic and a filter, is to break out the jack. You’ll need to remove a wheel.
(Editor’s Note: Ford has reached out to us to inform us that the service procedure we referenced below is incorrect, and that the wheel does not need to be removed. We regret the error, and we have further addressed it here.)
If you’ve paid attention to any of Ford’s marketing lately, you’ll know the company has been making vehicles for 115 years. When it comes to F-Series, the best-selling pickup truck line in the country, they’ve been ahead of the pack for 41 years. It should shock nobody that the company knows how to build a pickup truck.
There’s more to the success of the 2019 Ford Ranger than just whether or not the company can build a good pickup truck. The Ranger is a good truck. But will it be able to draw new customers to the growing midsize truck segment, and will it be able to attract people from Colorado and Tacoma?
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.
Good news: the Ford F-150 will not be discontinued as a result of the runaway popularity of the 2019 Ford Ranger. Phew.
As the Blue Oval readies its midsize pickup for a winter launch, Joe Hinrichs, head of global operations, claimed Monday that the automaker doesn’t expect much cross shopping among would-be Ford pickup buyers. Frankly, this would have only been a concern if buyers focused on a truck’s tow rating and nothing else. Still, Hinrichs felt it needed to be said.
Ranger folks are not F-150 folks.
As the 2019 Ranger creeps closer to dealer lots, Ford has pulled back the curtain on the one remaining mystery surrounding the reborn midsize pickup: what to expect from its turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder.
It’s the only engine available to Ranger buyers, and it’s mated solely to a 10-speed automatic. That’s five more speeds than one could get in the departing 2012 Ranger. Using the previous-gen model as a comparison, the four-cylinder 2019 Ranger makes nearly double the horsepower from the same displacement, and more than doubles the torque rating of its predecessor.
Today, readers, we learn the value of keeping browser tabs open. This is a more fruitful activity than, say, leaving a bag of potato chips open — which inevitably leads to soggy crisps.
While viewing the not-yet-ready-for-public-consumption Ford Ranger on Tuesday, a site promptly pulled down by the Blue Oval, we learned of the upcoming midsize truck’s (estimated) pricing and (likely) options packages. The page was largely devoid of interior shots, however. Until now.
Ford has been touting the upcoming Ranger since the Detroit Auto Show last January. Promising a 2.3-liter EcoBoost four and a 10-speed automatic, model and trim specifics about the mid-sizer from Dearborn have been scarce. Until yesterday.
Given that peek behind the Blue Oval curtain, you know today’s Ace of Base selection was easy.
It seemed like Ford Motor Company had answered prayers Tuesday, after an online configurator for the 2019 Ranger pickup finally appeared on the automaker’s consumer website. But, just as quickly as it appeared, Ford pulled it down. Apparently someone goofed up.
A company spokesman told Jalopnik that the posting “was a mistake,” adding that, “the pricing shown is inaccurate.” The build and price tool, the spokesman said, will appear next week.
It’s true that the configurator showed a regular cab selection, but clicking it only took you to the extended SuperCab bodystyle. A fleet or overseas option, maybe? We have to wonder just how different the actual pricing will be compared to what we just saw. So, for the sake of future comparison, here’s what Ford’s now-disappeared site told us (or didn’t) about the 2019 Ranger:
Back in March, as Matthew Guy waxed poetic over a base, Thailand-spec Ford Ranger, this author felt the tell-tale signs of desire flooding his body. “Look at all that basic utility!” my salivary glands cried. Yours did too, no doubt.
Well, give up all hope of seeing a cute little one-row Ranger midsize pickup in your near future, unless you’re jetting off to start a new life in Southeast Asia. It ain’t coming. But at least we now know what is.
Look at the truck shown above. Blacked-out grille and bumpers, old-school phone dial steel wheels of a reasonable size, and an honest, hardworking cleat system on the outside of the bed. I’d drive it and I’m pretty sure you would, too. Raise your hand if I’m correct.
Hear that Ford? Approximately 100 percent of the American public TTAC readers would sign the note on a base model Ranger. The SuperCrews you showed us in January were a good start, now stop teasing us with overseas mini-Raptors and please whip up a base model.
Keeping with Ford’s naming tradition, I’m dubbing this the Ranger XL.
After watching helplessly as competition from Toyota, General Motors, and Nissan ate its lunch in the midsize truck game, Ford has finally rolled out a new Ford Ranger. Last seen darkening dealer lots as a 2011 model, the old Ranger was put to rest after soldiering on for years with underpinnings dating back to the Jurassic era, or at least the Clinton administration.
No such concerns are on tap for the 2019 Ford Ranger, which deploys all the latest technology ranging, from a Terrain Management System to an off-road cruise control type system called Trail Control. Customer demand for trucks has never been higher, so the time is right for Ford to join the midsized pickup fray. The Ranger’s back, and we hear Sajeev is planning a party.
We’ve told you already that Ford isn’t letting off-road-focused variants of the Toyota Tacoma and Chevrolet Colorado have all the fun when the midsized Ranger comes to market next year. The long-awaited pickup, Americanized for its 2019 model-year debut, will arrive with a brawnier FX4 model in tow.
Thanks to these spy shots, we can now take a look at a Ranger FX4 that’s not a test mule.
In March 2017, for the second time in three months, the Ford F-Series range generated more total U.S. sales than the entire General Motors pickup truck lineup.
Total F-Series sales jumped 10 percent to 81,330 units in March, a total that far eclipsed the 71,786-unit figure achieved by the Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra, Chevrolet Colorado, and GMC Canyon — combined. The F-Series’ 10-percent jump occurred as GM pickup sales tumbled 13 percent; as the total truck market grew just 2 percent, year-over-year.
The F-Series’ March performance also represented its sixth consecutive monthly improvement, a sign of consistent growth that suggests Ford may well sell 900,000 pickup trucks in 2017.
Moreover, the F-Series’ consistent growth was cemented in March even as midsize pickup sales growth hit the skids.
Ach, who needs it?