The new ute’s Australian designers and engineers have packed the workhorse with an abundance of features all over the vehicle.
The current version has been among the best selling vehicles in the country for the best part of a decade.
The Blue Oval has given some insight into the functionality of its latest workhorse with a focus on how it is being used for daily work and play.
Ford has left no stone unturned as it tried to make the new Ranger as functional as possible.
Gary Boes, Enterprise Product Line Management director, Global Trucks says: “Our intent was not to simply create a good truck. We wanted to deliver an exceptional one that people would want to own – one that customers around the world could trust to tackle anything.
“We’ve really packed a lot into the next-generation Ranger to inspire owners to do more of what they love to do, with features that encourage them to explore new horizons,” he says.
A wider tray is packed with options for owners wanting to customise their cargo space.
Little things like the rear load area access step, which makes it easier to access all areas of the tray and means you no longer have to climb onto the wheel to access the rear of the tray.
Owners can create segmented DIY storage spaces by sliding pieces of wood into slots moulded into the bedliner, or even get creative and build things like a bike rack. There are plenty of tie down spots, too.
Lightning in the rear means finding the right tool in low light is that much easier.
Zone lighting controlled via the Fordpass app is another feature that allows owners to use headlights, side mirror mounted puddle lamps, number plate lamps and the tray lighting to illuminate the area around the ute or just specific areas.
The folding tailgate is designed to be lowered and raised with just one hand and it doubles as a mobile workbench. There are even two hidden clamp pockets to help secure materials used on the tailgate.
During the Ranger’s development process the designers and engineers always focused on how Ranger owners would use the vehicles.
Ford has worked with 4WD specialist ARB from the early stages of its development to make sure owners can plug and play factory-backed accessories to best suit their needs with little fuss.
All these little details complement some of the Ranger’s more headline grabbing changes.
It ditches the current 3.2-litre turbocharged diesel five-cylinder engine and the bi-turbo 2.0-litre four-cylinder unit for a 3.0-litre turbodiesel V6 that is expected to make about 190kW and 600Nm. It is paired to a 10-speed auto transmission.
There have also been big advances inside including a 12-inch tablet-style touchscreen loaded up with smartphone morning, wireless phone charging, voice activated features and Ford’s latest apps.
The Ranger is the first Ford locally designed and engineered since the Melbourne factory shut its doors five years ago.
Australia is one of three major R&D hubs for the global automotive giant and its ranks Broadmeadows and Geelong-based engineers and designers have swelled to more than 2500 employees.