Skip advert
Advertisement
Road tests

Ford Ranger Wildtrak review

The Ford Ranger Wildtrak certainly stands out from a crowd, but is it worth £34,000?

Owners Rating
Be the first to review

Once the preserve of workmen and farmers, pickups like the Ford Ranger, Mitsubishi L200, Isuzu D-Max and Nissan Navara now make increasingly popular alternatives to SUVs. There are even premium models like the Mercedes X-Class, which really do put luxury first.

With the Ranger, you can choose a wide variety of models from the utilitarian, work-focused, entry-level XL, the more comfortable XLT and Limited or the range-topping Wildtrak. The XL has a two-seat single cab, the XLT and Limited can have a 'SuperCab' with two rear jump seats and slim rearwards-opening doors, or the same five-seat double cab that's standard with the Wildtrak.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Carbuyer's top 3 used pickups for £9,000

This flagship model makes up a big proportion of Ford Ranger sales and we'll wager that the Wildtrak's looks are why. With its unmistakable 18-inch machined-surface alloy wheels, titanium-effect grille and exterior trim and matching side steps. the Wildtrack certainly stands out from a crowd, with at least as much road presence as the Mitsubishi L200 Barbarian, especially in with eye-searing Pride Orange metallic paint.

There's a price for all this attention-grabbing style: over £34,000. This substantial figure does net you a long list of standard equipment, though, including Ford's eight-inch SYNC3 touchscreen infotainment system with sat nav, voice control, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, as well as a reversing camera. You also get multi-colour ambient lighting, special colour-co-ordinated Wildtrak upholstery and floor mats and a matching stitched leather steering wheel.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

The Wildtrak also brings a boost in performance for your extra outlay – the only engine available is a 3.2-litre diesel, a big five-cylinder engine with 197bhp and lots of pulling power. Four-wheel drive is standard, too, providing loads of traction to help on rough or slippery roads, while a 3,500kg maximum braked trailer towing weight should make light work of hauling a speedboat up a greasy slipway.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The downside to all this power is fuel consumption that struggles to better 33mpg, and that'll barely reach 32mpg if you opt for the six-speed automatic gearbox. Those bigger wheels also take their toll on the Ranger's ride quality – its relatively basic suspension design is intended more for load-lugging than cruising comfort, and the Wildtrak's low-profile tyres struggle to dissipate pothole shocks as well as the smaller wheels elsewhere in the range.

The Ranger's ride isn't quite as punishing as that of some pickup rivals, though, and it's one of the more enjoyable to drive, too, with a more precise feel through the steering than you'll experience in a Nissan Navara. It's no sports car in bends, though, and rapid cornering is likely to elicit complaints from passengers. It's better for all on board if the driver takes a more relaxing approach, using that big engine to effortlessly reel in the miles.

Verdict: 3/5

The majority of buyers will have made their minds up on the Wildcat long before reaching the showroom. The big, showy pickup is pricey compared to other models in the range, but still looks temptingly affordable next to a similarly sized SUV like the Range Rover Sport or Mercedes GLE. There's no shortage of standard equipment, either. However, if you choose the less dramatically styled Limited it unlocks the smaller, more economical 2.2-litre engine and a smoother ride, while saving you almost £4,000.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Double-cab pickup tax benefits explained 2024
Ford Ranger Platinum drive
Tips and advice
20 Feb 2024

Double-cab pickup tax benefits explained 2024

Top 10 best tow cars 2024
Best tow cars
Best cars
31 Jan 2024

Top 10 best tow cars 2024

Top 6 best pickup trucks 2024
Best pickup trucks
Best cars
8 Jan 2024

Top 6 best pickup trucks 2024

Ford Ranger pickup review
Best Pickup: Ford Ranger
In-depth reviews
28 Nov 2023

Ford Ranger pickup review

Have You Considered

Maxus T90EV pickup review
Maxus T90 EV
In-depth reviews
2 May 2023

Maxus T90EV pickup review

Ford Ranger Wildtrak
Car trim reviews
27 Feb 2015

Ford Ranger Wildtrak

Most Popular

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s best PCP finance offers
Carbuyer best new car deals hero
Deals
19 Jul 2024

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s best PCP finance offers

All-new Audi A5: the sleek successor to the Audi A4
Audi A5 Avant front quarter
News
16 Jul 2024

All-new Audi A5: the sleek successor to the Audi A4

EU introduces new tyre rules potentially saving consumers £5.9 billion a year
Michelin tyres
News
19 Jul 2024

EU introduces new tyre rules potentially saving consumers £5.9 billion a year

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
26 Mar 2024

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Public EV charge point
Tips and advice
11 Jan 2023

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
21 Mar 2024

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors

Top 10 best electric cars 2024
Best electric cars
Best cars
16 May 2024

Top 10 best electric cars 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024
The best cheap-to-run cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024
Fastest hot hatchbacks hero
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024