2022 has marked a substantial year for Ford when it comes to its new Ranger range. For the company, the next-gen Ford Ranger marks a huge step forward for the vehicle lineup but at the same time, has forced the brand to undergo some drastic changes. For starters, Ford has had to completely overhaul its vehicle plant in Pretoria to accommodate this new car. In late November, the company announced that it officially sent its last-gen Ranger off the belt and was ready to start manufacturing the new lineup. That lineup is now available…. Well, Ford says you should start seeing the cars in dealerships soon and you can start custom ordering your Ranger from the official website too.
Watch my full hands-on with the new Ford Ranger in a video down below
In true Ford fashion, the company wanted me to test out its new tech while driving it all over the mountains in Cape Town South Africa. The car is definitely Built Tough as Ford claims and the experience gave me some great insight into the various components at work in the vehicle. From the new striking design to the Wildtrak’s new 360-degree camera. Ford gave me the full rundown of everything on offer in these awesome next-gen Rangers.
Ford has definitely crafted the smartest Ranger to date and the company can be proud of what it has achieved. The new Ranger comes in four variations starting with the Base, XL, XLT and Wildtrak. There’s also the Ranger Raptor but that won’t be around until next year.
Each Ford Ranger comes with a 4-year/120,000km warranty and a 4-year/unlimited roadside assistance plan. The Base Ranger starts at R486,000 and the best Wildtrak can cost up to R953,000. There are 13 models in total but technically, there are hundreds of different builds you can go for thanks to Ford’s built-to-order approach.
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab 4×2 6MT R486,000
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab 4×4 6MT R528,600
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XL 4×2 6MT R529,900
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XL 4×2 6AT R544,400
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XL 4×4 6MT R607,300
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XL 4×4 6AT R621,900
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XLT 4×2 6AT R592,700
- 2.0L SiT Double Cab XLT 4×4 6AT R669,800
- 2.0L BiT Double Cab XLT 4×2 10AT R702,300
- 2.0L BiT Double Cab XLT 4×4 10AT R782,100
- 2.0L BiT Double Cab Wildtrak 4×2 10AT R778,300
- 2.0L BiT Double Cab Wildtrak 4×4 10AT R867,700
- 3.0L V6 Double Cab Wildtrak 4WD 10AT R953,500
You can kit Ranger out with various package options available when you order it. The Base model, for example, comes with an optional R13k package that overhauls the truck’s outer look and replaces the fugly wheels with alloy rims and even packs in better seat covers. You can then get your Wildtrak and increase its wheel size to 20 inches, throw in extra 12V power outlets and much more.
The best news here is that even if you don’t opt for the best Ranger with the best add-on package, even the base model boasts some fantastic features and tech. For example, the base model includes an 8-inch driver display and a 10-inch vertical infotainment unit with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The base model also comes with vinyl seats for easy cleaning, climate control, the multi-function steering wheel and hill assist.
I think Ford has done a great job here including some much-needed features in the entry-level model. Sure, the outer design differs a bit from the XLT but usually, brands charge you a lot of money extra for the displays and smart systems alone.
Of course, if you have money to spend, the Wildtrak is packed with stitched seats, adjustable front seats, ambient lights that can be changed on an app, a 12-inch display, a Bang and Olufsen 10-speaker sound system, a 360-degree camera, active park assist, cruise control and much, much more. But the in-between offers some great options for those without a million rand available. Ford says there are 200 approved accessories to choose from too. The possibilities are endless.
When it comes to the engine and power, the base model Ranger is powered by a 125KW 2.0L Single Turbo Engine. You can choose between the 4×2 or 4×4 configurations. The XL models come with a 125KW 2.0L SiT Engine and are also available in 4×2 or 4×4. The base model comes with a newly developed six-speed manual gearbox whereas the XLT comes with a six-speed manual or automatic options.
The XLT are the double cab models. The base XLT also packs a 125KW 2L Single Turbo Engine but there’s also a 154KW 2L Bi-Turbo with a 10-speed automatic transmission instead of the base 6-speed transmission. They too come with 4×2 and 4×4 options.
Lastly, the Wildtrak comes in both 4×2 and 4×4 configurations with 2.0L Bi-Turbo engines and 10-speed automatic transmissions. However, the best of the best Wildtrak is a 184KW 3.0L V6 Diesel Engine with an all-wheel-drive system and 10-speed automatic transmission.
So how next-gen are these Rangers? Well, apart from the powerful engines, the trucks are also incredibly stylish and easier than ever to operate. I am no off-road driver and Ford took me all over Western Cape to test out the truck. Switching between the various driving modes on different parts of the trip was easier than ever and the giant displays gave me great insight into what I was doing.
The Wildtrak’s new 360-degree camera is some sort of new voodoo work and accurately displays the surroundings of the vehicle while you’re driving. It helps more than you would expect as rocks and other obstacles are clearly indicated while driving.
Ford has gone for a simpler tech approach with these Rangers and it shows. The driver display detailed my driving mode and what wheel setting I was using. It also displayed speed, warned me if I was veering off the lane and shouted at me when I didn’t have both my hands on the wheel. The infotainment display worked flawlessly with Apple CarPlay and I could easily connect and hand off my GPS navigation to the unit.
The giant display also helps with parking assist, the 360-camera, temperature control, and lighting and even gave me the option to see what degree my truck was sitting at and what direction my steering wheel was facing.
The whole system also comes packed with a USB C and USB A charging port and the wireless charging pad in both the Wildtrak and XLT. They were also able to charge my iPhone through the case. This is great news for those who don’t want to remove their cover every time they plug their phone into charge.
I can’t express how helpful this charging is. I know it isn’t anything revolutionary but I packed all my battery packs to keep my iPhone charged because I record all my videos on it and I didn’t use them once. Instead, the Ford kept the phone charged all the time. The ease of just putting it down in front of you and not plugging it in is also a real blessing.
I am likely not even touching half of what these cars have to offer because there’s a lot to unpack here. Ford as tweaked every single little thing to make them look and feel like a new experience. But after three days behind the wheel, I have to admit that these Rangers are truly next-gen and Ford has successfully created a premium truck that feels incredible to drive, is striking and stylish. Was also able to get into the car with my super-long legs, adjust the seats and make my drive comfortable. That says a lot given I am 2 meters tall.
I want to thank Ford South Africa for the opportunity to test drive this truck. I am really sorry about the flat tire. I swear that rock just jumped out at me. I can’t wait to see what the company does for the Raptor..