One year after confirming the nameplate would return to the U.S. market, Ford is pulling the wraps off the Ranger midsize pickup truck. The 2019 Ranger is an all-new design specifically tailored for the U.S. market; the Ranger has been offered overseas in other forms for some time.
With an overall silhouette reminiscent of rival midsize pickups, the 2019 Ranger is instantly recognizable as a Ford thanks to its horizontal-bar grille and porthole-like vent on the front fenders. The raked-back windshield is supposed to reduce drag and wind noise, while the flared fenders hint at truck toughness. The tailgate, too, has a stamped-in Ranger logo. As on most rivals, the truck’s overhangs are intentionally minimal to improve off-road approach and departure angles. The Ranger will be offered in SuperCab (half rear doors) and SuperCrew (four doors) configurations.
Ford characterizes the new model as appealing to urbanites who still have a taste for the outdoors, saying it was designed for, “Those who blend city living with more off-the-grid adventures on weekends.”
The Ranger’s frame is made from high-strength steels, and the front and rear bumpers are also steel for toughness. Underhood is a variant of Ford’s turbocharged 2.3-liter inline-four engine, coupled to a ten-speed automatic transmission. No power ratings are available yet, though a version of that engine delivers as much as 310 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque in the 2018 Mustang.
Both rear- and four-wheel-drive models will have Dana Trac-Lok differentials, and an electrically locking rear diff is available on all models and standard on the FX2 and FX4 trim levels. The FX4 Off-Road package is the most trail-ready version, with unique off-road shocks and tires, and steel skid plates. It also includes a Terrain Management System controller inspired by the one in the F-150 Raptor, with Normal, Grass, Gravel and Snow, Mud and Ruts, and Sand modes for the truck. There's also a new Trail Control feature. A more advanced form of hill-descent control, it allows drivers to set a speed that the truck will manage with braking and acceleration, freeing off-roaders to focus only on steering.
The inside of the Ranger will seat five people, and has an optional 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system running Ford’s Sync 3 software, as well as a pair of color displays in the instrument cluster. Optional features include a 4G LTE wi-fi hotspot, 115-volt power outlets, a B&O Play sound system, navigation, and LED head- and taillights.
Trim levels for the new Ranger comprise XL, XLT, and Lariat, with both Chrome and Sport visual appearance packages for dressing up the truck.
All Rangers come standard with pre-collision braking, and the XLT and Lariat trims add lane-keep assist, blind-spot warning (which works when towing a trailer), and rear parking sensors as standard. The top-tier Lariat adds pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise control to its active-safety roster.
The 2019 Ford Ranger will begin production in Michigan “late this year,” so it will likely be several months before we’ve got every pertinent spec on the truck, including power, towing capability, fuel efficiency, and pricing. In the meantime, midsize truck buyers who can’t wait for the Ranger can already pick from nearly half a dozen rivals: the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon twins, the Toyota Tacoma, Honda Ridgeline, and even the aging Nissan Frontier.
Live Photos: Patrick M. Hoey / Motor1.com
Gallery: 2019 Ford Ranger
An American Favorite Reinvented: New Ford Ranger Brings Built Ford Tough Innovation to U.S. Midsize Truck Segment
- Built Ford Tough: Ford answers the call from truck customers looking for an affordable, rugged, and maneuverable midsize pickup that’s Built Ford Tough; torture-tested alongside Ford F-150 trucks, Ranger quality starts with a rugged high-strength steel frame backbone, proven Ford-built 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine and class-exclusive 10-speed automatic transmission
- Ready for adventure with innovative technology: New features make driving easier and more fun, both on- and off-road; available FX4 Off-Road Package adds protective skid plates, upgraded tires, off-road-tuned shocks and suspension, while Terrain Management System™ and Trail Control™ help navigate challenging conditions; a suite of innovative technologies includes standard Automatic Emergency Braking to help avoid collisions
- Strong new choice for midsize truck fans: Ranger brings American truck lovers an all-new choice; production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as the U.S. industry sees continued growth in midsize pickups
DETROIT, Jan. 14, 2018 – Ford today reveals the all-new 2019 Ford Ranger for North America, bringing midsize truck fans a new choice from America’s truck sales leader – one that’s engineered Built Ford Tough and packed with driver-assist technologies to make driving easier whether on- or off-road.
Production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as customer demand is growing for midsize trucks. U.S. sales are up 83 percent since 2014 as a new generation of midsize truck buyers seek more maneuverable, fuel-efficient pickups.
The 2019 Ford Ranger answers the call with an all-new midsize pickup featuring a new exterior design, chassis and powertrain developed specifically for North American truck customers. Powerful and strong, with a high-strength steel frame, Ranger is equipped with a proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine mated to the only 10-speed automatic transmission in the segment.
“Ranger has always held a special place in the hearts of truck fans,” said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford executive vice president, Product Development and Purchasing. “The all-new Ranger is designed for today’s midsize truck buyer, delivering even more utility, capability and technology for those who blend city living with more off-the-grid adventures on weekends.”
Ranger comes in entry-level XL, mid-level XLT and high-level Lariat trim series with available Chrome and Sport appearance and FX Off-Road packages, and in SuperCab or SuperCrew cab configurations.
Built Ford Tough
Built Ford Tough is engineered in Ranger’s DNA – from its high-strength steel frame backbone to its frame-mounted steel front and rear bumpers. Ford engineers put Ranger through the same torture testing as the legendary F-150 goes through.
Even its design is tough. Ranger’s muscular body features a high beltline that emphasizes strength, while a raked grille and windshield provide an athletic appearance – designed to aid in aerodynamics and reduce wind noise. Short overhangs are functional off-road for clearing obstacles.
From the rear, the Ranger nameplate stamped in the tailgate conveys strength, and the tailgate itself is designed to handle people and cargo. A rugged steel bumper with an available integrated trailer hitch receiver helps make towing campers, ATVs or watercraft a breeze.
Inside, Ranger blends comfort and functionality with room for up to five people, their gear and accessories. A center stack includes an 8-inch touch screen for the available SYNC® 3 system, while the instrument cluster features dual LCD productivity screens for real-time vehicle, navigation and audio information.
Ranger’s twin-power dome hood houses its 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine designed for efficiency and capability thanks to direct fuel injection, a twin-scroll turbocharger and 16-valve design. For added durability, the engine features a forged-steel crankshaft and connecting rods, and chain-driven dual overhead cams.
“Ranger’s proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost provides a torque target on par with competing V6 engines, but with the efficiency of a four-cylinder,” said Thai-Tang. “When you pair that with its 10-speed transmission, you’ve got one of the most versatile, powerful and efficient powertrains in the segment.”
Ranger is designed for a new generation of midsize truck customers who head off-road to recharge.
Ranger prioritizes ground clearance to help climb over off-road obstacles. The FX4 Off-Road Package provides additional trail capability with off-road-tuned shocks, all-terrain tires, a frame-mounted heavy-gauge steel front bash plate, frame-mounted skid plates and FX4 badging.
To give customers a great all-terrain driving experience, Ranger’s FX4 Off-Road Package features an innovative Terrain Management System™ similar to the F-150 Raptor’s. It includes four distinct drive modes – normal; grass, gravel and snow; mud and ruts; and sand. The system can shift on the fly to automatically change throttle responsiveness, transmission gearing and vehicle controls to tailor traction, driveability and performance to any given terrain or weather condition.
The FX4 Off-Road Package introduces Ford’s all-new Trail Control™ technology. Like cruise control for the highway but designed for low-speed, rugged terrain, Trail Control takes over acceleration and braking – sending power and braking to each individual wheel to allow drivers to focus on steering along the course.
Power is distributed through Dana®Trac-Lok™ differentials on both 2WD and 4WD models with an available electronic-locking rear differential (standard on FX2 and FX4) for increased all-terrain traction. Ranger four-wheel-drive versions feature 2-high, 4-high and 4-low.
Ranger incorporates smart driver-assist, passenger convenience and connectivity technologies. Advanced driver-assist technologies include standard Automatic Emergency Braking, while Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Departure Warning, a Reverse Sensing System and class-exclusive Blind Spot Information System with trailer coverage are standard on XLT and Lariat trim levels. Additional driver-assist technologies standard on Lariat include Pedestrian Detection and Adaptive Cruise Control.
Available SYNC® 3 features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, Ford+Alexa personal assistant functionality and optional navigation. An available FordPass™ Connect 4G LTE modem provides Wi-Fi access for up to 10 devices. Available AC power outlets allow for charging of laptops and USB outlets provide more options for passengers to connect. Available B&O PLAY premium audio is specially tuned for the Ranger cab to deliver a rich and engaging listening experience.
Additional features include optional LED headlamps and taillamps. Optional exterior lighting includes puddle lamps and lighting for the cargo bed, while Ford’s available Smart Trailer Tow connector alerts drivers to faulty trailer connections.