Ford Ranger pick-up (2006-2011)
- Impressive off-road with strong engines
- Capable of towing large trailers
- Cheap to buy
- Lack of practical storage in cabin
- Engine noise on motorways
"The Tonka-toy looks are backed up by genuine off-road, mud-plugging ability"
The Ford Ranger is designed to withstand rigourous off-road use and to carry heavy loads. Also capable of towing large trailers, it is not surprising the Ranger is popular with tradesman and farmers. On the inside however, the Ranger resembles a large family SUV with a comfortable cabin and a very car-like feel. Available in two-seater, two-door Regular Cab, or four-door, four-seater Super and Double Cab there is a body style to suit all uses. Regular and Super cab models are also available with two-wheel drive. The largest Double Cab model offers generous front and rear cabin space and genuine everyday levels of comfort. The Ranger series is availabe in either XL, XLT, Thunder and range-topping Wildtrak spec. Two turbocharged, four-cylinder diesel engines are available, a 2.5-litre 141bhp unit and a 3.0-litre 154bhp powerplant fitted in the Wildtrak model only. The Ranger pick-up is up against the Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi L200 and Volkswagen Amarok.
MPG, running costs & CO2
Tax benefits aside the Ranger isn't very economical
Four-wheel drive Double Cab models powered by the 2.5-litre diesel engine with a manual gearbox are capable of returning 30.4mpg on the combined cycle. Deemed a commercial vehicle the Ranger will cost a fix rate of £210 per year in road tax but buyers will benefit from considerable tax savings if the vehicle is used for business or work purposes.
Interior & comfort
Well appointed cabins with comfrotable seats
From the supportive and well cushioned seats to the stylish dashboard, the cabins do well to hide the Ranger's utilitarian origins. In Double Cab Thunder and Wildtrak variants the leather seats fitted as standard are a desirable addition. On the move the ride can become choppy on rough surfaces, especially for rear passengers.
Practicality & boot space
Large flat-bed loading bay can carry cargo weighing up to a tonne
Apart from the large load bay measuring 1,530mm long and 1,456mm wide, the Ranger has a distinct lack of useful storage areas in the otherwise well designed cabin. Load bay covers provide extra security but are expensive to buy new.
Reliability & safety
Engines, drive & performance
Very workman-like to hustle around corners
Engine noise is noticeable at speed and the Ranger rides badly over poor surfaces when fully unladen. Cornering highlights the very tall gearing used in the steering resulting in lots of wheel turning during parking and maneuvering. The 2.5-litre Thunder Double Cab model is capable of reaching 0-60mph in 12.5 seconds and packs 330Nm of torque, enough to pull a braked trailer weighing up to three tonnes.
Price, value for money & options
Relatively cheap to buy under equipped compared with the competiton
Priced competitively, the Ford Ranger easily undercuts the Nissan Navara and Volkswagen Amarok but the price does reflect the poorer spec and lack of practicality found in the cabin and optional extras are quite limited. An automatic gearbox is available on 2.5-litre Thunder models only, carrying a £1,440 premium. A range of optional load deck hard tops and tonneau covers are also available at extra cost.