Double Cab 2.2 TDCi Limited 4x4
is usually on top in most of
the many sectors in which the Blue
Oval competes. Last year (and like
every year) they had the best-selling
two cars: Fiesta and Focus. Now
Ford is fielding an all-new Ranger
in the increasingly popular lifestyle
THE RANGER LINE-UP is conventional with Regular (Single Cab), Super and Double
Cab body styles plus a Chassis Cab option (for bespoke body suppliers). At launch,
there's the choice of two high-torque turbodiesel engines both with six-speed
And those choices are: a 147bhp 2.2-litre four-cylinder or a 197bhp 3.2-litre
five-cylinder. Lifestyle-friendly Double Cab models can also be specified with
an extra-cost automatic transmission. Due shortly, but only for two- and four-wheel
drive Single Cab models, is a 123bhp 2.2-litre diesel.
trim levels and, like the engines, they are dependent on body style
are XL, XLT, Limited and Wildtrak, with Limited likely to prove the most popular.
The all-new Ranger
retains a ladder frame
chassis with rear leaf
springs plus dampers for
strength and durability,
and it also features
numerous other better-
than functions over its
Prices, including VAT (pick-ups are classified as commercial vehicles and so
incur VAT), start at £17,705 and run to £29,135. The likely most popular version,
the 147bhp 2.2-litre manual Limited Double Cab will cost £25,535.
all-new Ranger retains a ladder frame chassis with rear leaf springs plus dampers
for strength and durability, but it also features numerous other 'better-than'
functions over its competition (Mitsubishi L200, Toyota HiLux, Nissan Navara
and Isuzu Rodeo).
Ford say that in most cases, when the specifications are compared, the Ranger
offers better value for money. And if size matters (as it usually does) the
Regular Cab has the longest and largest load bay and the biggest payload (1,340kg).
The Double Cab boasts the largest payload of any double cab (1,152kg) and all
4WD Rangers have a towing capability of 3,350kg again, substantially
better than the other guys by between 350 and 850kg.
These specs will definitely impress Pick-up Man; but so too will the new Ranger's
chunky, muscular, all-action looks. Stylistically, the old Ranger was somewhat
'sit-up-and-beg' this new one is all thrusting and macho with lots of
bright body colour options that are usually associated with Ford's latest car
Inside the Limited spec Double Cab it's just as impressive the fascia
design and the trim, particularly to the doors and the upholstery, is all very
much in keeping with that used in top quality 4x4s and SUVs.
windows and door mirrors and AirCon are all standard-fit. Safety is equally
impressive: the Ranger Double Cab comes endorsed by a five-star Euro NCAP safety
rating the very first pick-up to score so high.
The new Ranger offers
and ride comfort
even running on
Standard safety kit includes an electronic stability programme, hill descent
control, trailer sway control, and new side-curtain, thorax and frontal impact
Ranger also delivers vastly improved handling, positive steering and ride comfort
(even with the 18-inch alloys fitted to the Wildtrak versions). This new Double
Cab really does perform very well it's at least as good as the latest
generation Toyota HiLux and the even more impressive VW Amarok.
197bhp 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbodiesel unit is huge on torque (346lb ft
from 1,500rpm) making it extremely responsive with loads of grunt yet easy on
the fuel. 28.3mpg is the official combined cycle figure for the six-speed manual
gearbox-equipped 3.2-litre on test it returned 27.2mpg. Its 249g/km tailpipe
emissions are relatively low for a vehicle of this kind and get you a £210 annual
road tax bill.
The most popular engine and the one tested here will be the 147bhp
(150PS) four-pot turbodiesel. This too has plenty of torque: 276lb ft from 1,500rpm.
Average fuel consumption is officially 32.8mpg with 30.1mpg recorded
on test. Although lower, at 224g/km, CO2 emissions will still cost you the same
commercial vehicle annual road tax of £210 that you'd pay for the 3.2-litre
on the 3.2-litre model, the 2.2, riding on 17-inch alloys, served up good ride
comfort. The suspension also provides a very compliant ride, coupled with sharp
steering and handling.
has also improved off-road. There's the usual 2WD/4WD High ratio selection and
4WD Low ratio is easily selected by a turn button control.
Reasons to go for a
Ranger include the
styling, cabin design and
spec, ride comfort,
sharp handling and that
5-star Euro NCAP
Thanks to an anti-stall function, the Ranger can also climb steep tracks using
just its tick-over engine speed, thereby ensuring safe grip. The hill descent
control can be varied for speed using the cruise control function.
Reasons to go for a Ranger include the improvement in all areas, its styling,
cabin design and specification, ride comfort, sharp handling and that five-star
Euro NCAP safety rating.
Ford's new Ranger models, in particular the Double Cabs, have all the ingredients
to succeed in the lifestyle and leisure-cum-workhorse markets and, with pick-ups
clearly re-establishing their appeal, the Ranger should soon be climbing close
to the top of the UK sales chart. David Miles
Ford Ranger Double Cab 2.2 TDCi Limited 4x4 | £25,535
Maximum speed: 106mph | 0-62mph: 12.3 seconds | Overall test MPG: 30.1mpg
Power: 147bhp | Torque: 276lb ft | CO2 224g/km