2019 Ford Ranger: It's back, and here's everything you need to know

Welcome back, Ranger! 2019 Ford Ranger shows off ahead of its Detroit show debut

Midsize pickups are back again, and Ford wants a piece with its international Ranger

January 14, 2018

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The Detroit auto show will be packed with new pickups this year including the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado and the 2019 Ram 1500. Not to be upstaged, Ford is now officially back in the midsize truck game with the 2019 Ranger pickup. It will exclusively house a new version of the company’s 2.3-liter EcoBoost four, though we don’t know the output yet. For reference, the same engine makes 350 hp and 350 lb-ft in the Focus RS; we’d bet it won’t make that much here, but hey, think of the tuning potential!

Two and four-wheel drive versions of the returning Ranger will be available -- a truck that, by the way, has been continuously sold outside of the U.S. since 1998—all with Ford’s new ten-speed automatic transmission developed with Chevy. Power goes through Dana Trac-Lok differentials on both two- and four-wheel drive models. An electronic locking rear differential is optional, standard on FX2 and FX4 models.

Ranger will arrive early next year in three trims: XL, XLT and Lariat. Chrome and sport appearance packages as well as FX off-road, SuperCab (rear half-doors) and SuperCrew (full four-door) configurations will all be available.

Like the F-150 Raptor, the Ranger gets Ford’s Terrain Management System featuring normal, grass, gravel and snow; mud and ruts; and sand modes. FX4 models add the new Trail Control feature that takes over the throttle and brakes, leaving the driver to steer through rugged terrain. It works from 1 to 20 mph.

2019 Ford Ranger at the Detroit auto show

The 2019 Ford Ranger will come with Sync 3, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as optional navigation and premium audio.

Ford didn't reveal towing and payload numbers but said it's targeting "best in class."

The cabin and dashboard will look nothing like the Ranger you drove in high school. Buyers will see the Sync 3 infotainment system, LCD gauge cluster screens, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, optional navigation, AC power outlets and USB outlets.

This pickup will also be safer than your old truck with standard emergency braking across the lineup and standard (on XLT and above) lane keeping, lane departure warning, reverse sensing system and blind-spot information. The top Lariat model adds pre-collision assist, pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise control.

The new Ford Ranger, ready to do battle with the Chevy Colorado, GMC Canyon, Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier, goes on sale in the first quarter of 2019.

Jake Lingeman

Jake Lingeman - Jake Lingeman is Road Test Editor at Autoweek, reviewing cars, reporting on car news, car tech and the world at large.
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