We tested the Ford Ranger in finish Wildtrak with engine Duratorq 3.2-litre, 5-cylinder and 200 HP of power, and have done so with a big question in mind: does it make sense to buy a pick-up as an alternative to an suv? Since this type of trucks can legally operate at 120 km/h we can say they are considered “cars” for legal purposes and therefore compete you to you with genuine off-road cars for people who need to load them up to the top, to tow huge caravans or simply pull them up from the asphalt usually.
Design of the Ford Ranger
There are many pick-up on the market, but, in my opinion, there are two that stand out above the rest: Toyota Hilux and Ford Ranger. It is not that they are better than the others, at least not necessarily, but both relate to the tradition of manufacture of this type of vehicles to the larger scale.
The Toyota Hilux is the car indestructible par excellence , and proof of this is its enormous success in developing countries or directly in the third world, where paved roads and the spare parts of almost any other car, is conspicuous by its absence.
For its part, the Ford Ranger is the little brother of the Ford F-150, the master of the automobile market in north america for the last 40 years. The image of a pick-up of Ford is full of reminiscences film and transports us to the great plains, the horse ranches and the american midwest.
Each one in his style, Toyota, and Ford are the brands of pick-up most well-known and probably more attractive a priori.
In terms of design, I think that the Ranger is the pick up more successful with that snout prominent, that profile full of character and the rear optics wide and solid look. A small bug is that the defense front in gloss black, which I’m afraid is going to scratch easily with rough handling. A plastic more rough would probably be a better solution.
The interior features an excellent balance between durability and feel of quality. Almost everything is hard and robust appearance, but at the same time the materials are pleasant to touch and the settings have a great strength. The seats are comfortable and hold the body sufficiently.
Engine and technical features of the Ford Ranger Wildtrack
For those more interested in the technical part I leave here a set of tables with all the information that I find relevant about this vehicle. We started with its huge 5-cylinder engine and 200 HP, with maximum torque of 470 Nm at just 1,500 rpm:
|Engine||5 in-line 3.2 l. diesel|
|Power||200 HP at 3,000 rpm|
|Maximum torque||470 Nm at 1,500 rpm|
Let us now consider the properties of the transmission 4×4, an essential ingredient in this type of vehicle and that will give us the measure of its limits out of the asphalt.
|Type||4×4 connectable with low range (2H, 4H or 4L)|
|Rear differential||Lockable manually|
|Center differential||Not takes. On asphalt you have to go in 4×2|
|Assists||Traction Control + decreases|
The dimensions of the Ford Ranger are very favorable, playing against only the huge wheelbase that could make it prone to “empanzar”, but it is offset by a high ground clearance of 229 mm, which is the largest that exist in a standard vehicle.
|High ground clearance||229 mm.|
|Angle of attack||28th|
|Angle of departure||28th|
|Depth of wading||800 mm|
As we have already said, it is a big car and heavy, but also very capable for the trababjo hard. Let’s see it in figures.
|Mass in running order||2.189 kg|
|Useful cargo net||1.014 kg|
|Maximum mass towable||3,500 kg|
|Total height||1.815 mm|
|Width with mirrors||2.163 mm|
|Turning radius between curbs||At 12.4 m.|
Finally, a minimal reference to the consumption, that are consistent with the mass displaced and their aerodynamics.
|Consumption average homologated NEDC||8,8 l/100km|
|Average consumption in the test||10,2 l/100km|
Road manners of the Ford Ranger
The Ford Ranger is striking road. With your chassis rails and cross-members, suspension rear leaf spring and its nearly 2,200 kg of total mass everything seems to indicate that the car has a very awkward and difficult to drive, but it is not so at all.
Obviously the behavior of the Ranger is a far cry from a compact car or family and it is something worse than any other SUV, but still far exceeds all my expectations.
In curve turns very flat and offers a great control of the inertia. We have also tried to ruffle the feathers in tight corners, but on the contrary as it might seem, the Ranger does not lose traction or lose composure in supports strong.
The address is not too communicative, but the driver keeps a great control of the car because yes it is fairly accurate in the trajectories. The feeling of security is high and the car is much more agile than one would expect.
Capabilities in field of the Ford Ranger
We come to the most fun part of our test: the behavior outside of the asphalt.
In this terrain the Ranger has left us an excellent impression, thanks to its ability of driving on roads of earth and stones with a total feeling of solidity and a complete absence of suffering. The Ranger digests bumps and rocks without a murmur, and the torsional stiffness keeps the cabin free of any cracks or vibration. The feeling of the steering wheel is to fly over the ground with a car unstoppable.
If you face obstacles really difficult, as a slope is extreme, the Ranger has a gearbox, the absence of a center differential and locking rear manual, which climbs like a caterpillar by authentic sliding walls (see video). Its high ground clearance also gives us a great confidence to overcome potholes deep, and stones on the road.
Possibly the behavior in the field is the best out of the car and its capabilities are far above what we dare to make a priori.
Advantages of a pick-up in front of an off-road conventional
Trying to answer the initial question, I see interesting reasons to consider this type of vehicle as an alternative to an off-road conventional.
1 – Already almost does not remain off-authentic in the market. We have the Toyota Land Cruiser, we have the Jeep Wrangler and on a scale much smaller would be the Suzuki Jimny, a toy, a tiny but very capable off-road. If those cars we will of price or do not convince us, there is almost no choice if we are looking for all-wheel-drive, locks, and separate chassis.
2 – If you are looking for a vehicle for work to the harder tasks of the field, construction or any other sector in which you have to drag and load large mass, a pick-up offers a load capacity higher than that of any other vehicle that you can drive with a driving car and the possibility of loading it with a crane from above. Other hobbies may also justify this type of car, especially if they involve large trailers or heavy loads, or extremely dirty.
3 – This car is very attractive and projects an image of toughness and adventure-that is also real. It will probably be this reason which you move the most of the shopping, outside of industrial use.
Disadvantages of a pick-up in front of an off-road conventional
On the other hand, the problems of purchasing this type of vehicle are also evident.
1 – 5,36 m of length and this car does not fit in any site.
2 – consumption are high to be a car so big and so little aerodynamic
3 – At the end of the day, the pick-up are not very versatile. The shape of the cargo area has a low height, it implies that things will go banging against the side if not trained constantly to the hooks and the separation of cabin and cargo prevents us from folding down the rear seats for loading objects longer.
The first conclusion is that if we eliminate the emotional factor, it is difficult to justify a pick-up that will not be used to perform heavy work.
That said, if you are looking for a off-road of truth, hard and able, taking into account the limited supply that exists currently in the market and the enormous appeal of the Ford Ranger inside and out, I can understand very well that someone will be tempted to have one as a second car for absolutely everything, including traveling with the family or venture out for sites that very few cars could pass.
On the other hand, taking into account everything that this car can withstand without a murmur, if we use quiet I think that can be a vehicle of eternal and indestructible, which I also really liked being able to drive.