Ford’s new Ranger-bakkie shows its face

Ford revealed its next-generation Ranger bakkie, which will also be produced for local consumption as well as the export market at its Silverton plant in Pretoria.

1 Lead Image Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Front 3 QTR static 1800x1800

Visually, the next-generation Ranger is bold and confident, with a purposeful exterior that shares the DNA of Ford’s global truck design. The design features a defined new grille and signature C-clamp headlight treatment at the front, while a subtle shoulder line down the sides incorporates bolder wheel-arches that give Ranger a sure-footed stance.

For the first time, Ford Ranger offers matrix LED headlights. At the back, the taillights are designed in harmony with the signature graphics on the front. Inside, the car-like cabin steps up, using premium soft-touch materials and prominent portrait-style centre touchscreen with Ford’s signature SYNC connectivity and entertainment system.

Beneath the new bodywork is an upgraded chassis riding on a wheelbase 50 mm longer and a track 50 mm wider than the previous Ranger.

Buyers can expect a 3-litre V6 turbodiesel, one of three turbodiesel engine options available at launch, depending on the market. There will be a choice of Single-Turbo and the Bi-Turbo 2.0 inline four-cylinder diesels. The Single Turbo comes in two different performance levels. In addition, a 2.3 litre EcoBoost four cylinder-petrol engine will also be available.

New transmission choices include an updated 10-speed auto or six-speed manual, complementing the current six-speed automatic.

Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Cabin View RHD 1800x1800
Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak EPB Eshifter 1800x1800
2 Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Rear static 1800x1800
1 Lead Image Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Front 3 QTR static 1800x1800
Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Cabin View RHD 1800x1800
Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak EPB Eshifter 1800x1800
2 Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Rear static 1800x1800
1 Lead Image Next Gen Ranger Wildtrak Front 3 QTR static 1800x1800

To develop the ride and handling expected of a truck customer’s use for a wide range of work, family and play – engineers focused on the fundamentals.

Engineers moved the front wheels forward by 50 mm for a better approach angle and outboard for better off-road articulation, both of which improve the off-roading experience. They also shifted the rear suspension dampers outboard of the frame rails to give drivers and passengers a better ride both on- and off-road.

Customers will have a choice of two four-wheel drive systems, an electronic shift-on-the-fly system, or advanced full-time 4x4 system with a reassuring set-and-forget mode.

The heart of the Ranger’s connective experience is the large 10.1-inch or 12-inch touchscreen in the centre stack. It complements the fully digital instrument panel and is loaded with Ford’s latest SYNC4® system, which comes customer-ready with its voice-activated communications, entertainment and information systems.

Additionally, there is an embedded factory-fitted modem, allowing connectivity on the go when linked with the FordPass App. FordPass enhances the ownership experience with features like remote start, vehicle status check and remote lock and unlock functions via your mobile device.

The screen is also linked to a 360-degree camera to make parking a breeze in tight urban spaces or to assist when negotiating particularly tricky terrain while out exploring.

An integrated side-step behind the rear tyres creates a strong, more stable way of accessing the loading bay.

Widening the truck by 50 mm may not seem like a lot, but it makes a stark difference, especially in the cargo box. It means that customers will be able to load flat some pretty fundamental items, such as a sheet of building plywood or a full-size pallet.

Zone lighting – controlled via the in-cabin SYNC screen or through the FordPass App – provides 360-degree lighting around the truck to help give customers better visibility around the vehicle. Load box lighting is provided under the left- and right-hand rails and provides plenty of light for finishing jobs in low light or finding things in the cargo box at night.

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