return of the ford ranger

2019 Ford Ranger – Ready to take away some Tacoma marketshare?

It was gone for awhile but now it’s back. The Ford Ranger went away from our market back in 2012. For 2019, Ford has given us a new option in the mid-size truck segment. The Ranger has returned and, even though it’s not a brand-new platform, it’s a welcome variable in a solid field of competition.

The Toyota Tacoma outsells the Chevrolet Colorado by over 100,000 units. In 2018, Toyota moved over 245,000 examples of its well-built, capable pickup. It’s facing ever improving competition from the likes of the aforementioned Colorado, the GMC Canyon, and the Honda Ridgeline. Now though, Ford has returned to the mid-size mix. Has it brought enough truck to make a marketshare dent?

Most definitely.

The 2019 Ranger lets you pick between a few trim choices. You have a choice of SuperCab or SuperCrew. And you get to pick the color, of course. But the powertrain? That remains a fixed item on the order list. It’s the 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder turbo and it produces 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. That’s backed up by a smooth-shifting ten-speed automatic gearbox.

A base truck starts at just over $25k while a fully loaded rig will run you into the $40k range. But it is nice enough inside. The front seats are comfortable. Visibility is excellent. And the overall driving experience fits the truck perfectly.

Yes, we’re eager to see a Ranger Raptor arrive. Also, it would be nice to see Ford offer a bare bones, single cab, work-truck level Ranger as well. But the truck that is here and available is a pretty damn good. And it’s enough to make some people think twice about dropping into their local Toyota dealership to buy a Tacoma.

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11 responses to “2019 Ford Ranger – Ready to take away some Tacoma marketshare?”

  1. MattC Avatar

    I had three Rangers. My first was a 1997 Reg cab/5speed 2.3 4cylinder (I loved and regretted selling) . My second was a 1999 Ranger XLT extended cab 4X4/3.0L V6/auto that I didn’t like (underpowered/rusty/weird electrical gremlins) and a current to me 2010 Ranger Regular cab/ 5speed auto/2.3L 16V that is pretty much all I need. I am very interested in the new Ranger as it is a bit larger (the regular cab even for average guy is small) and more powerful. I lament not having a stick but the 10speed auto should be more than adequate for the truck. I am curious about real world fuel mileage. Thanks for covering seat comfort as that is becoming an issue as I get older.

    1. Zentropy Avatar

      I’ve had two: a ’97 reg cab with the 2.3 and 5 speed (and I completely agree– I loved it and regret selling it), and a ’98 reg cab with the 4.0 and 5 speed (which I liked but don’t regret selling). As a commuter and runabout, I thought the short-wheelbase four cylinder manual was perfect. It was fun to drive even though it wasn’t fast or particularly nimble. Dead simple, dead reliable.

      I’m interested in this new one, but given the increase in size and the automatic-only, I don’t think I’m a potential buyer.

      1. outback_ute Avatar

        They briefly did a SWB version of the current Ranger in Thailand, using the Everest SUV chassis (coil spring axle) so a mix and match of existing parts. Wheelbase is about a foot shorter.
        There was also a test mule spotted at the Australian proving grounds.

  2. Zentropy Avatar

    I like the powertrain options and (generally) the exterior styling, but that interior looks rather dated. I realize this truck is internationally a few years old, but I was hoping the American refresh would make it a bit… fresher. Also, for what looks like a relatively smooth road, that truck is throwing you around a lot. Without seeing the other trims in a similar situation, I’d consider skipping out on the FX4.

    1. Rover 1 Avatar
      Rover 1

      The refresh seems to consist of making the bumpers out of steel instead of plastic, (so they can be chromed?)

      Hardly an ‘improvement’. In NZ, the country’s largest selling vehicle often has the stock bumper removed and replaced with one for off-road use made of aluminium.

      1. Zentropy Avatar

        Damn, but those Nitto Grapplers look awesome.

      2. Jeff Glucker Avatar
        Jeff Glucker

        Steel on the bumper yes, but the chrome is only an option.
        When wearing the black package, it looks much better.

  3. salguod Avatar

    I just bought a Ranger Extended cab in almost the same color. It’s the 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder turbo and it produces 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. That’s backed up by a smooth-shifting ten-speed automatic gearbox. It’s also 23 years old and cost me less than 5% of this one. It’s also fantastic.

    Also, here’s a comparison of the old Super Cab Ranger (not mine) and the new:

    1. Zentropy Avatar

      Grats on the new (old) Ranger! I’ve been scanning Craigslist for one, too, but think I’m going to instead rescue my grandfather’s old F150 from my dad, as he’s just letting it sit. I sentimentally hate to see it rot away on his property.

      1. salguod Avatar

        That F-150 sounds great. You said it was the straight 6, right? Manual or automatic?

        1. Zentropy Avatar

          Straight six with a 5 speed (my fave). It’s a ’91 bricknose, so it’s not exactly pretty, and it’s a longbed, but it has an honest look to it. Clearcoat is gone on the hood and roof (typical for that era), but it only has 125K on the clock, which is nothing for a 300. The 2.73 highway gears may need to go in favor of something peppier, and I plan to install a positive traction diff. I’m starting to get excited about tinkering with it, but I need to free up some space here at the house before I can bring it to Ohio.