The long wait for the new Ford Ranger is over. The company has revealed the 2019 Ranger for North America. 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, according to Ford.
The 2019 Ranger is equipped with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission.
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. SuperCab and SuperCrew configurations are also available.
The new Ranger is built with a high-strength steel frame with a frame-mounted steel front and rear bumpers. The truck body features a high beltline that emphasizes strength, while a raked grille and windshield provide an athletic appearance and is designed to aid in aerodynamics and reduce wind noise. Short overhangs are functional off-road for clearing obstacles.
At the rear, the tailgate itself is designed to handle people and cargo. A steel bumper with integrated trailer hitch receiver helps make towing campers, ATVs or watercraft.
Inside, Ranger has 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 with 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 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 the Terrain Management System that is similar to the F-150 Raptor feature. 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 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 AdvanTEK independent front and solid rear axles on both 2WD and 4WD models with an available electronic-locking rear axle (standard on FX2 and FX4) for increased all-terrain traction. Ranger four-wheel-drive versions feature two-high, four-high and four-low.
Ranger incorporates smart driver-assist, passenger convenience and connectivity technologies, according to Ford. Advanced driver-assist technologies include standard Automatic Emergency Braking, while Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Departure Warning, a Reverse Sensing System and 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 taillights. 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.