The 2019 Ford Ranger is on track to its showroom debut early in the new year, with the kick-off of production of the new mid-size pickup in Wayne, Michigan.
“Ford truck fans demanded a midsize pickup that’s ‘Built Ford Tough,’ and we’re delivering with our all-new Ranger that’s specially designed and engineered for American truck customers,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president of global operations. “At the same time, we’re revitalizing our Michigan Assembly Plant and securing good-paying jobs for our hourly employees here in the U.S.”
Ford invested $850 million US into the Michigan Assembly Plant that most recently produced the Ford Focus and C-Max, and prior to that featured production of the Ford Expedition, Lincoln Navigator, Ford Bronco (which is due to return in 2020) and other Ford and Mercury models dating back to its initial residents in 1957, a Mercury station wagon and the Edsel.
“The revitalization of the Michigan Assembly Plant and renewed production of the Ford Ranger is another exciting chapter in our state’s comeback story,” said Michigan Governor Rick Snyder. “This is also an opportunity to look toward its promising future with production of the all-new Ford Bronco on the horizon.”
Available only in extended-cab and crew-cab configurations, the newest Ranger is unofficially the fourth generation of the vehicle, though this is a completely different pickup (designed and engineered by Ford Australia in 2011) from the compact that last saw duty on North American roads eight years ago.
To adapt to North American truck requirements (crash standards and payload), the original Ranger T6 design was modified with new steel bumpers separated from the surrounding bodywork, a locking tailgate and fully-boxed frame.
Power will come from a, EcoBoost 2.2-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder engine linked to a 10-speed automatic. It will deliver full connectivity (SYNC 3 with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) and a host of driver assist technologies such as Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, and available Blind Spot Information System with class-exclusive trailer coverage.
And for those who want to get off the smooth trails, an available FX4 Off-Road Package with a Terrain Management System that provides multiple selectable drive modes and all-new Trail Control.