Ford is ending U.S. sales of Ranger

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 27, 2011

The fate of the small pickups in the hands of U.S. automakers is uncertain. The U.S. sales of the Ford Ranger, which had once led the mid-size pickup segment, are ending. The Chevrolet Colorado compact truck will still be around past the 2012 model year, according to General Motors Co. Meanwhile, Chrysler Group is considering if it will replace the Dakota, which had stopped production last August.

Ford is anticipating that it will be able to maintain its share of full-size trucks by focusing its resources on the F-Series. GM is hoping that with the increasing gasoline prices, the buyers will return to the mid-size segment.

It may even convince small-truck owners to move to large pickups. The prices of mid-size pickups are nearly the same as their full-size counterparts but there isn’t a significant advantage in terms of fuel economy. R.L. Polk & Co.’s Tom Libby said that there are doubts on whether this declining segment remains viable. He said that there’s the trend is leaning towards smaller vehicles due to the need to meet fuel economy standards.

He added, “It’s an unsettled situation.” Full-size trucks continue to be the best-selling vehicles for the U.S. car companies as GM and Chrysler had reorganized under U.S.-supported bankruptcies in 2009.

From 2006 through 2008, Ford recorded losses of $30.1 billion before it became profitable again. When it comes to U.S. vehicle sales, Ford’s F-Series ranked No. 1 and GM’s Silverado is at No. 2. Ford spokesman Mike Levine said that the sales figures can’t be argued with. Obviously, the demand is high for full-size pickups and so this is where Ford will allocate time and investment, according to Levine.

New Ford Ranger makes its debut

Ford Ranger has been one of the carmaker’s best-selling pickup trucks around the world for nearly two decades. Millions of customers have been satisfied with the capabilities of the Ford Ranger, especially when it has to pull trailers, haul heavy payloads and endure even the roughest of roads. The latest iteration of the Ford Ranger builds on this reputation by offering a muscular yet contemporary design that conveys both strength and toughness.

Its capability is underpinned by the fact that its core is any of the three new, fuel-efficient powertrains -- including two common-rail Ford Duratorq TDCi diesel engines and new six-speed gearboxes. The new top-of-the-range Ford Ranger XLT Double Cab model – which was revealed in Sydney, Australia wrapped in Aurora Blue – is powered by a very fuel-efficient 2.2-liter Ford Duratorq TDCi diesel engine that provide up to 110 kW (150 PS) of output and up to 375 Nm of torque.

Likewise, the new Ford Ranger is provided with a new chassis frame, new front and rear suspension and new steering system – all complemented by an array of chassis and safety technologies. The new Ford Ranger also features an all-new interior that does not only offer a whole new level of roominess but also delivers remarkable comfort and cabin quietness. This is augmented by the fact that the new Ford Ranger comes with a wide array of features and technologies that would benefit the driver and passengers alike.

Gary Boes, vehicle line director for Ford's new compact truck platform, remarked that the Ford Ranger provides compelling evidence of what the American carmaker could achieve by harnessing the power of One Ford.

He noted that the new Ford Ranger -- designed and engineered by a team possessing authentic truck expertise – will be able to satisfy the needs and wants of pickup truck owners around the world. He added that Ford is extensively testing the new Ranger in five continents under the most demanding conditions in the most grueling testing environments to show that its credentials are world class.

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