Which Ford Ranger is best for you?
Which Ford Ranger is best for you?
There is no doubting that the Ford Ranger has fast become the most popular pickup on UK roads. It’s not a new vehicle by any means, having found its way to the European market in 1988, the Ford Ranger Pickup has been available from your local Ford dealer for almost 20 years.
The original vehicle was based on the Mazda B-Series, then progressed to Mazda BT50 before being re-launched in 2011 as a 100% Ford thoroughbred. In 2016 it was treated to a bit of a facelift to fall into line with the rest of the Ford SUV fleet and is unmistakable as a modern Ford vehicle, with similar grille/headlight/bumper design as the Ford Kuga and Ford Edge crossovers.
As the Ford Ranger has three different body-styles and four model variants it can be difficult to choose which would suit your needs but we’re hoping the following will help.
The SINGLE CAB and SUPER CAB are really designed for utility and professional users while the KING and DOUBLE CAB are designed for those who need extra seats but with the added benefit of the pickup bed. Anyone used to driving a Ford car or van will feel right at home in the latest Ford Ranger. Much of the switchgear carries over and all looks very familiar inside.
XL and XLT variants are aimed squarely at the no-nonsense utility user with the emphasis on toughness and reliability, with the LIMITED and WILDTRAK coming packed with extra features and a spec level more suited for the private user or owner/driver.
Performance and Economy
The Standard Cab XL is available in two-wheel-drive form but everything else is proper 4×4. Then we have two engines – the 158bhp 2.2 TDCi and 5-cylinder 3.2 TDCi giving a very tasty 197bhp and 470Nm of torque – and a choice of manual or automatic gearbox. However, the six-speed auto is only available with the Double Cab model.
If you can get by with a single cab, 1,800kg towing weight and a 3.15 final drive ratio you’ll be happy to get 43.5 mpg from the 2.2TDCi. Switch to an axle final drive ratio of 3.55 to get the 3,500kg towing capacity and choose the auto ‘box and you’ll be looking at a maximum of 35mpg. Opting for the 3.2TDCi will return 34mpg in manual guise and 31mpg for the auto (all figures are assuming the vehicle is unladen) while also offering to get you from a standing start to 60 miles per hour in just 10.6 seconds.
If all you need is the ultimate workhorse then the Single Cab will give you a load bed length of 2.3m and capacity of almost 1,300kg. Throw in the 3.55 axle and the pickup now gives you 3,500kg towing weight too. Opting for the Super Cab will gain you a couple of extra seats for small people in the back but shortens the loadbed to 1.847m. Althoughost people use the extra cab space for secure storage rather than trying to bundle the apprentice back there.
The Double cab gives a loadbed of just a smidge over 1.5m and drops the payload to 1,070kg but you do get proper sized, and comfortable seating for an extra three fully grown adults in the cab.
The Ranger gets a full five-star NCAP rating with a whole host of driver and passenger safety features plus traction control, stability control, hill descent control, trailer sway control. It’s safe to say that if there’s a potential for it going wrong in anyway, your Ford Ranger has it under control!
You should add the Driver’s Assist Pack even if you don’t really want adaptive cruise control, lane assist, auto high-beam headlights, traffic sign recognition and collision avoidance. On the used market, 2nd hand buyers will definitely be looking for it.
While you could order a two-wheel-drive variant, you wouldn’t really want to when you can have proper electronically controlled and switchable 4×4 driving on tap with accompanying low-range.
You’ll be more than happy with a full foot (30cm) of ground clearance, 28° approach angle and whopping 800mm wading depth that is unmatched in any other pickup in its class.
Hill Descent Control and Hill-Start Assist (stops you rolling back on a hill) also help when you’re driving off tarmac but the optional Off-Road Pack (just like the Driver’s Pack you SHOULD tick this option!) will add a locking rear diff and underbody protection.
The Base XL Ranger is not to be sniffed at, while being fairly basic compared to the Wildtrak it does give you DAB radio (this is still not standard on all pickups!) the XLT swaps the steel wheels for alloys and throws in air-con, cruise control, auto headlights and auto-windscreen wipers.
Take the next step up to the Limited and you’ll see that Ford are now catering for the business user, owner operator and those not wishing to slum it with Bob-the-builder-spec pickups. Full leather interior is accompanied by the touchscreen Ford SYNC infotainment system.
When you get to the Wildtrak spec list you’ll be rewarded with 18” alloys, better exterior trim, Sat Nav, parking and reversing cameras and other neat trim flourishes.
Nene Overland Ford Ranger Street Fighter and Desert Fighter editions
As good as the standard Ford Ranger pickups are, our near 30 years of experience in this business have told us that the customer always wants something more, something better or just something slightly different. And we can certainly give you a Ranger that’ll stand out from the rest.
Performance-wise we’re already tuning the 3.2TDCi up to 250bhp. Our development work with a hybrid turbo and other induction and exhaust tweaks looks like we’ll be getting right up there at 300+bhp fairly soon. But right now you can opt for our wide wheel arch kit to surround the awesome 17” or 20” split rim alloys, shod with your choice of AT or MT rubber and our exclusive design grille with Lazer Lamps auxiliary lighting.
Take it a step further with full VB air suspension, the best sound proofing in the business, hi-fi standard audio systems and executive level leather trim and you’ll completely forget that you’re driving a pickup. But still benefit from the tax efficiencies that buying and owning a commercial truck brings like VAT Qualifying status (your company can reclaim the VAT on the full purchase price) and much lower company car tax (the P11d benefits) for owner/drivers.
Our Street Fighter and Desert Fighter editions give you just a taste of the kind of modifications, customisation and accessories we can offer, but what we can do is only limited by your imagination. We’ve built, modified and maintained hundreds of pickups over the years so it’s a safe bet that whatever you need, we’ve already done it!
And for those wanting to travel further afield we can fully prep and kit out your Ford Ranger for long-distance, overland expeditions, complete with roof tents, specialist storage, awnings, fridge, cooking facilities, in fact everything you are likely to need without even getting close to troubling the Ranger’s maximum payload.
We can also supply and specialise in the following:
- Ford Ranger 3.2TDci and 2.2 TDci Tuning
- Ford Ranger 3.2TDci and 2.2 TDci Performance Upgrades
- Ford Ranger Parts
- Ford Ranger Accessories
- Ford Ranger Wheels and Tyres
- Ford Ranger Modifications
- Ford Ranger Servicing
- Ford Ranger Tipper Bodies
- Ford Ranger Dropside Pickup Beds
- Ford Ranger Expedition Equipment
- Ford Ranger Recovery Equipment