Ford has finally pulled the wraps off the next-generation Ranger through a global virtual launch event held in Australia. Arguably one of Ford’s most important models in the Philippines, the all-new Ranger is definitely ready to shake up the midsize pickup segment.
Riding on an upgraded T6 platform that features a 50 mm longer wheelbase and a 50 mm wider track compared to the outgoing model, the new 2022 Ford Ranger now has a 3.0-liter V6 turbo diesel engine for the first time. Thanks to the platform’s hydro-formed front-end structure, Ford will be able to offer the Ranger with varying degrees of electrification. After all, rumor has it that the Ranger could spawn a plug-in hybrid powertrain for the first time.
As for that new 3.0-liter V6 turbo diesel engine, unfortunately, Ford did not give any horsepower figures for this engine, or for any engine to be offered for that matter. The 2.0-liter diesel in single- and twin-turbo configurations will carry over from the previous model, though no power figures were also specified. In the outgoing Ranger, the single-turbo motor produced 180 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque, while the twin-turbo diesel produced 210 horsepower and 500 Nm of torque.
Power is sent through the rear wheels or via the two available four-wheel drive (4WD) systems–an electronic shift-on-the-fly system and an advanced full-time 4×4 system that Ford says has a “reassuring set-and-forget mode”. Transmission options for the new 2022 Ford Ranger include a 10-speed automatic, 6-speed automatic, and a 6-speed manual, depending on the variant.
Ford also made improvements to its ride and handling capabilities. By moving the front wheels forward by 50 mm, its approach angle and wheel articulation has been improved. The rear leaf spring suspension dampers have also been moved outboard of the frame rails as a way to improve its ride both on- and off-road. Off-road recovery is also made easier with the prominent dual recovery hooks in the front bumper.
From the outside, the new 2022 Ford Ranger draws inspiration from its pickup siblings, the F-150 and Maverick, both of which are primarily for North America. It looks properly modern and sleek, with its more imposing front end that’s characterized by a horizontal grille that’s flanked by C-shaped headlights. Higher variants even come with LED daytime running lights and headlights with Matrix LED technology.
The side profile is more on the evolutionary side of things, and some might say it looks too similar to the outgoing model. The rear end, however, looks more striking than before, with its new set of taillights and a sculpted tailgate design. And then for the first time, the 2022 Ford Ranger has an integrated step board at the sides of the rear bumper.
Ford has thoroughly revamped the interior of the all-new Ranger, giving it significantly more tech features, a more premium and modern feel, and better utility. Most variants will come with the latest SYNC4 infotainment that first debuted in the Mustang Mach-E. In the case of the new Ranger, this is controlled via a 10.1- or 12-inch portrait touch screen. Thankfully, Ford still kept the Ranger’s hard buttons, because the last thing we would want from a pickup is to make operating all of these tech features harder to use.
Ford also created a fully-digital instrument cluster for the Ranger, and this works in conjunction with the SYNC4 infotainment system. There’s also a built-in modem for the FordPass telematics system that lets owners control vehicle functions and access Ford’s concierge service via their smartphones. Let’s also hope that this feature will be compatible with our country’s internet connection speeds.
The new 2022 Ford Ranger now offers a cargo management system that consists of dividers that can hold various items through a system of ultra-strong spring-loaded cleats that clip into rails of the bed. The tailgate can also double as a mobile workbench with an integrated ruler and clamp pockets, just like in the F-150.
Lastly, the Ford Ranger is also available with a feature called Zone Lighting, which first made its debut in the F-150. This set of lights that surround the vehicle can be controlled via the FordPass app or the SYNC4 infotainment system.
Production of the 2022 Ford Ranger will begin in 2022 in Thailand and South Africa, which means that the Philippine-market Ranger’s launch should definitely happen next year.