Ford is no stranger to the pickup truck market, dominating with the F series. In 2018, they sold more than one million units in the United States alone, making it not only the best-selling vehicle in the US, but worldwide. Yet, international sales are so insignificant that the company doesn’t even bother to make a right-hand drive version. Those wanting a taste of the Ford mythos outside of American shores have a lone option, the Ranger.
Built to do battle against the Asian and German class rivals, the 2019 Ranger Limited brings in the expertise Ford is known for. It goes straight for the heart of every pickup owner – workload statistics, towing up to 7,700lbs and able to haul a total of 2,700lbs in its six-foot bed. These numbers come from the fact that the Limited is equipped with one of the most unusual and powerful engines in the segment, a 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbo diesel. The output of 197bhp puts it near the top of the mid-sized pickup class. However, truck buyers know that’s not the whole story. It’s torque that moves stuff, and the Ranger spits out an amazing 347 lb/ft of it at an even more unbelievably low 1,750rpm. This gives it flexibility in power delivery few rivals have.
All this power is fed to a six-speed automatic or manual transmission, electronic shift on-the-fly four-wheel drive and a host of computer safety systems like Traction Control. Add in a rear locking differential, and the Ranger is a go-anywhere beast. On road, the suspension is soft enough to soak up broken pavement and still give good control. Off road is just as simple with all the mechanical and electrical assistance like Hill Descent. The low-end toque will pull the pickup over challenging ground easily.
All this is done from a refined cabin more akin to a well-optioned family sedan than a pickup. At night, side mirror lights aid exit while the integrated roll bar lights illuminate the cargo bed.
The SNYC 3 system handles things quickly and smoothly through the large infotainment touchscreen and steering wheel-mounted buttons. Connecting modern devices is a breeze. There is limited satellite navigation, but the fact that it even functions in Jamaica is nice bonus. Cup holders, illuminated USB ports, deep storage and door bins mean there is plenty of space for passengers and their stuff. Seats are comfortable over long distances and when off-roading.
For work, family or fun, the 2019 Ranger Limited earns it way on to the shopping list for pickup buyers. It is available from Kingston Industrial Garage, 381 Spanish Town Road, Kingston 11.
— Written by Nichola Beckford