Ford puts the new Ranger through some tough tests to make sure the truck can perform.
The Ford Ranger returns to the American market in early 2019, and to tantalize potential customers the Blue Oval is now showing off how it is testing the midsize pickup's abilities. The work should make for a better truck when the model finally hits the market.
Ford didn't pull any punches when evaluating the Ranger. The video shows the truck driving over an ultra-bumpy road that's so rugged that a computer has to drive the vehicle because a human couldn't take it. In addition, the pickup had to endure days of rocking and rolling on the Blue Oval's shaker table. While those tests checked the truck's suspension and build quality, the company checked the Ranger's hauling ability at the Davis Dam's six-percent grade.
When someone buys a pickup, there's an expectation that it's tough enough to handle whatever the owner does, and Ford wants to make sure the Ranger can stand up to a customer's punishment. "We torture every component ? from its high-strength steel frame to its EcoBoost engine to its cloth and leather-trimmed seats ? to ensure Ranger is ready for any season and nearly any terrain," Rick Bolt, Ranger chief engineer, said in the announcement accompanying this video.
The 2019 Ranger will arrive with a 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder and 10-speed automatic, but the company won't yet release the horsepower or torque specs. Buyers will be able to choose between either a SuperCab body with small rear doors or a SuperCrew configuration with more room for passengers in the back. In terms of capability, the model will be available in rear- or four-wheel-drive configuration, and there will be an optional FX4 Off-Road package with upgrades like a tougher suspension, electrically locking rear differential, and steel skid plates. Spy shots suggest Ford is evaluating whether to bring the meaner Ranger Raptor to the U.S. eventually.