Is Ford Really Bringing the Ranger Back?

By

Automotive Editor

Armaan Almeida was an Automotive Editor who produced buying guides and sneak previews, in addition to publishing daily news stories and tracking monthly deals, incentives and pricing trends from Toyota, Nissan and Lexus.


, Automotive Editor - August 26, 2015

Big boost in midsize pickup truck interest has Ford re-thinking their product plans.

It's only been five years or so since the last Ford Ranger rolled off the assembly line here in the U.S., but news broke this morning of a possible comeback for the brand's beloved midsize pickup truck. As reported by Bloomberg earlier this morning, Ford and the United Auto Workers Union (UAW) are in the midst of a discussion to bring back the Ranger. But why was it discontinued in the first place?

Ranger Discontinued in 2011

Chief Engineer for the Ford F-150 (2010 - 2014), Jackie DiMarco held an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on the popular social networking site Reddit back in 2013. Among a plethora of questions, the one on the minds of many Redditors was if Ford had plans to bring back the staple nameplate to the model lineup. The answer was not what many wanted to hear:

"We're investing in F-Series because the small truck segment has steadily shrunk from almost 8 percent of total industry sales in 1994 to 1.9 percent of industry sales in 2012," responded DiMarco back in 2013. So the short answer is that the decision Ford had made did not make business sense, since sales had fallen off so sharply.

And the reason why those sales fell is because shoppers were snapping up F-150s like they were going out of style. Sales of the F-150 jumped year-over-year between 2009 - 2012, and continue to do so.

Ranger vs. F-150 Sales

Ford Ranger Ford F-150
2002 226,094 813,701
2004 156,322 939,511
2006 92,420 796,039
2008 65,872 515,513
2009 55,600 413,625
2010 55,364 528,349
2012 19,366 645,316
2014 N/A 753,851

Source: Automotive News Data Center

Attractive New Models

The Toyota Tacoma, the king of midsize pickups continues to sell well, even with a newly-redesigned model coming next month. As these once compact pickup trucks continue to grow in size and stature, so does shopper interest.

A big part of the reason for the reinvigorated interest in the segment is due in part to GM, whose twin midsize pickups have stolen the show right off the bat when they were introduced last year.

Both the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon are extremely popular amongst truck shoppers because of their affordable pricing and almost full-size-like capabilities. Although a comparable Silverado in Double Cab configuration is a little under a foot-and-half shorter than a Colorado Extended Cab, the regular cab Silverado is actually 7.5 inches shorter than the same Colorado. Food for thought for midsize truck shoppers.

Tale of the Tape

Length Width Height Weight
2011 Ford Ranger XL SuperCab (6-ft bed) 203.6" 69.4" 66.3" 3,210 lbs
2015 Chevrolet Colorado Extended Cab (6-ft bed) 212.5" 74.3" 70.4" 3,960 lbs
2015 Chevrolet Silverado WT Double Cab (6.6-ft bed) 230" 80" 73.9" 5,002 lbs
2015 Chevrolet Silverado WT Regular Cab (6.6-ft bed) 205" 80" 74" 4,521 lbs

Side-by-Side Comparison »

Ranger Still Being Sold

Yes, it's true. The Ford Ranger is still being sold--just not here in the U.S. Roughly 200 different markets overseas get to buy and drive the newest version of the Ranger, including the U.K., where the Ranger is available with two engine options, both diesel. We'd be happy to have them here in the U.S., though Ford might have something else in mind for the U.S. market. Although it's still up for debate, don't bet on Ford bringing the exact same Euro-spec Ranger stateside.

Sales of Midsize Trucks Heat Up

Midsize truck sales continue to do well, and that's without any barn-burning incentives. The perfect blend of low gas prices, aging vehicles and right-priced new models have helped to stimulate sales.

Moreover, these trucks have made huge strides in terms of honest-to-goodness everyday drivability. The 2015 Colorado on 4x2 configuration gets fuel economy of 20/27 mpg and starts at only $20,995*. So, if and when Ford decides to come out with the new Ranger, how much will it cost? We'll have to wait and see, but it will definitely have to be competitive with the Colorado/Canyon's price tag.

What do you think? Do you want to see Ford bring the Ranger back? Let's here it in the comments section below.

, Automotive Editor

Armaan Almeida was an Automotive Editor who produced buying guides and sneak previews, in addition to publishing daily news stories and tracking monthly deals, incentives and pricing trends from Toyota, Nissan and Lexus.


Privacy Policy|Terms of Use|Cookie Policy|Disclaimer
COPYRIGHT 1999-2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba CarsDirect.com