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Ford brings back the Ranger

The Ford Ranger is back.Ford eliminated the Ranger compact truck from its U.S. lineup in 2011 because, it said...

Posted: Jan 15, 2018 5:54 PM
Updated: Jan 15, 2018 5:54 PM

The Ford Ranger is back.

Ford eliminated the Ranger compact truck from its U.S. lineup in 2011 because, it said, customers weren't interested enough in small trucks to sustain the business.

Since then, Toyota has done fine with its smaller Tacoma truck. General Motors had a major hit when it brought back the Chevrolet Colorado mid-sized truck in 2015.

Meanwhile, Ford continued selling a pickup called the Ranger in markets outside the United States.

A revised version of that truck, the one sold overseas, is now coming back to the United States as the 2019 Ford Ranger. It's larger than the old Ranger pickup. It has a few cosmetic changes for the North American market, including changes in the grill and hood-line.

For the U.S. market, designers wanted to give the Ranger more of a "Ford Tough" look, explained Joe Hinrichs, Ford's executive vice president for Global Operations. That's an attitude American customers expect from a truck, he said. Plus Ford wanted it to bear some resemblance to the larger F-150 pickup.

The Ford Ranger will be powered by a 2.3-liter EcoBoost, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine. It will provide power similar to competitive trucks' 6-cylinder engines but with better fuel economy, according to Ford.

The Ranger will also have a 10-speed transmission, a fuel-saving feature that Ford is adding to many of its vehicles. Generally speaking, transmissions with more gear ratios are more efficient because they allow the engine to spend more time operating with its most efficient speed range.

A special option package, called FX4, will provide off-road tires, specially tuned shock absorbers, all terrain tires and protective plates on the underside of the truck. It will also have a computerized "Terrain Management System" with settings for different sorts of on-road and off-road surfaces.

The Ranger will share its underlying engineering with the company's upcoming Bronco off-road-capable SUV, which will be produced starting in 2020.

The ability to use the truck's engineering for more than one vehicle was a major factor in the decision to bring the Ranger back to the United States. Automakers rely on that sort of "platform sharing" to maximize profits, especially when a given vehicle may not, on its own, sell in large enough numbers to make the investment worthwhile.

The Ranger and, later, the Bronco will both be built at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant. That plant builds Ford Focus compact cars. Focuses are still being built there even as construction workers are building assembly lines for the Ranger but, in the next few months, production of the Focus for the U.S. market will shift to China. Ford had originally said it would go to Mexico, an announcement that brought an angry response from President Donald Trump.

Ford made that decision, said Hinrichs, because small cars don't sell as well in the U.S. as they used to. Trucks and SUVs, however, remain extremely popular. The shift to Ranger and Bronco production will keep jobs at the plant, he said, and even increase employment there.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 61125

Reported Deaths: 1711
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds5269106
DeSoto332627
Madison229756
Harrison215232
Rankin214628
Jackson199434
Jones177457
Forrest164053
Washington149232
Lauderdale132988
Lee123930
Neshoba119788
Lamar112112
Oktibbeha105435
Lowndes98932
Warren96427
Scott95517
Bolivar94832
Copiah91724
Panola91211
Sunflower90822
Lafayette88111
Holmes84747
Leflore84059
Pike83232
Grenada81320
Yazoo78611
Leake76825
Lincoln74540
Pontotoc7377
Wayne73321
Simpson71227
Monroe70250
Coahoma66310
Tate65023
Marion60118
Covington58811
Adams58425
Marshall5718
Winston57115
George5475
Union53113
Newton51611
Attala49824
Tallahatchie49310
Pearl River48536
Walthall45318
Chickasaw43819
Noxubee41910
Claiborne40013
Smith38013
Calhoun3788
Jasper3768
Clay37013
Alcorn3574
Prentiss3426
Hancock33614
Tishomingo3204
Lawrence3135
Tippah31212
Yalobusha31210
Itawamba30710
Clarke30025
Montgomery2933
Tunica2786
Humphreys27111
Carroll24511
Greene22611
Quitman2251
Kemper22315
Perry2227
Amite2105
Jefferson Davis2026
Webster19912
Jefferson1936
Wilkinson18712
Sharkey1801
Stone1523
Choctaw1274
Benton1250
Franklin1162
Issaquena211
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 89927

Reported Deaths: 1580
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson11859225
Mobile9086191
Montgomery6249143
Madison501425
Tuscaloosa397463
Baldwin321023
Shelby305032
Marshall296630
Unassigned273453
Lee250540
Morgan222315
Etowah193026
DeKalb170113
Elmore160237
Calhoun15609
Walker147063
Houston131912
Dallas128823
Russell12331
St. Clair121712
Franklin119620
Limestone119613
Cullman114111
Colbert109312
Lauderdale107112
Autauga102420
Escambia97915
Talladega91813
Jackson8283
Chambers82138
Tallapoosa81478
Dale78520
Butler75235
Blount7363
Chilton7106
Coffee7095
Covington70920
Pike6607
Barbour5635
Lowndes55224
Marion54224
Marengo52014
Clarke4869
Hale45926
Bullock43811
Perry4294
Winston42911
Wilcox4059
Monroe3914
Randolph38810
Bibb3743
Conecuh37310
Pickens3679
Sumter36118
Lawrence3100
Washington31011
Macon30913
Crenshaw2863
Choctaw27412
Henry2453
Cherokee2427
Greene24211
Geneva2320
Clay2175
Lamar1982
Fayette1745
Cleburne1211
Coosa922
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