Truck Thursday: 2 Continents, 2 Rancheros

Evolution, whether natural or artificial, is a funny thing.  Take, for example, these two pickup trucks.  They are both car-based trucks named Ford Ranchero.  But that’s about the only similarity they share.  The North American variety is stylish, lumbering, and thirsty.  The Argentinean version is awkward looking but more utilitarian.

Exhibit A: The North American Ford Ranchero gringus.  The 6th generation Ranchero (1972-76) looks and feels like its near twin, the Ford Torino.  Despite the Oil Crisis, five of the six available engine options for this 118″-wheelbase behemoth were V8s.  This specimen was caught in the urban savannah that is San Francisco’s Outer Richmond District.

Exhibit B: The Argentinean Ford Ranchero gauchus.  The story of this Ranchero’s lineage is markedly different.  In America, a contemporary passenger car, e.g. Falcon, Torino, LTD, was used as the basis for the Ranchero.  In Argentina, the Ranchero was always based on the same 1960s Falcon.  Originally, in 1962, American Falcon CKD kits were shipped down to Argentina to be assembled.  Wanting to take control of their own industrial destiny, Argentina continued building essentially the same Falcon until 1991, with minor cosmetic updates.  What resulted is this curious 1980s model spotted in the pampas.

This rookie wildlife biologist is horrible at identifying engines.  Does this look familiar to anyone?

Images source: Copyright 2012 Hooniverse/Jim Yu

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