South Africa’s bakkie market is a fiercely-contested field, with the Toyota Hilux dominating the overall sales charts. Consumers continue to further their love affair with the top-end lifestyle bakkies and the Ranger is becoming increasingly popular.
You’ll immediately notice the trapezoidal grid, muscular hood and chiseled projector headlamps when you take a look at the Ranger. The new appearance enhances the Ranger’s reputation for being built on a platform for toughness, capability and strong road presence.
An extensive use of chrome detailing gives the Ranger an exclusive expression, and extends to the front grille, mirror housings, the door and tailgate handles. The chrome rear bumper features a steel step plus rear park sensors linked to the reverse camera.
I was very impressed with how it looks on the inside. The cockpit of the Ford Ranger has been completely reconstructed and features a modern as well as functional instrument panel. It houses some of the latest driver-assistance technologies, which makes the driver almost effortless. Controls are in plain sight and easy to reach. The noise and vibration levels have been reduced.
Ford’s advanced SYNC 2 in-car multimedia and connectivity solution is an extremely popular feature. The system boasts an intuitive and attractive eight-inch touchscreen with colour-coded corners for easy menu navigation between the phone, multimedia and climate control functions.
Unparalleled connectivity is provided by means of the media hub that provides an SD card slot as well as two USB ports to connected mobile devices. The system can also create a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot via a USB modem or tethering to a smart phone via Bluetooth.
The Ford Range is really a-must-have for tall folks like me. The extra legroom makes life more comfortable and large doors as well as positioning of the rear pillar makes it easier to get in and out.
Automatic headlight and windscreen wiper operation is standard, along with the electro-chromatic rear-view mirror, a cooler function in the centre console storage compartment, cruise control with speed limiter, dual electronic automatic climate control, power-folding exterior mirrors and full leather trim.
Safety isn’t compromised in the Ford Ranger. It features seven airbags – including side and curtain airbags – along with a reinforced safety cell help make every journey a safer one.
The Ford Ranger’s 2.2 diesel engine is more powerful than ever. It manoeuvers effortlessly and the steering is light. The Electronic Stability Program (ESP) is standard equipment on all but the Base models. The system incorporates Roll Stability Control, Traction Control, Hill Launch Assist and Hill Descent Control (on 4×4 models). This is linked to the ABS system (optional on Base) that includes Electronic Brakeforce Distribution and Emergency Brake Assist.
- Power:118kW at 3700rpm
- Torque:385Nm at 1500 – 2500
- Fuel consumption:2/100km
- Fuel type:Diesel
- Fuel tank capacity:80L
- Price: From R221,900- R604,900
What we like
- High driving position
- High tech features
- Great interior space
- Great off-road experience
- Aggressive looks
- Luxurious finishes
- It feels safe
- It is solidly built
- Advanced audio system and sound quality
What we don’t like
- It is not fuel efficient as claimed
A tough truck doesn’t have to mean a rough ride – that’s exactly what you’ll get with the Ford Ranger 2.2 TDCi automatic. With admirable ride quality, the engine performs well both on-and-off the road. The 2.2-litre turbodiesel is exceptionally matched to the 6-speed automatic transmission. This makes the Range a solid proposition if you are looking for a capable automatic double-cab.
Five-star rating: 4/5