Even though the current generation Ranger is undergoing its first full year of being on sale in the U.S. and may feel new to many buyers (it’s ancient predecessor got axed in 2011) it is actually a very old design, with the rest of the world getting their first crack at it during that time (with an update being done in 2015.) As such, it is no surprise that Ford is already working on an update for the truck, with the folks at Which Car suggesting that a massive increase in power could be in store for U.S. buyers.
According to the publication, an unnamed source in Ford’s You Yangs Australian proving ground revealed that the company is preparing all new powertrains for the next generation Ranger, with the U.S market possibly benefitting from the addition of more cylinders. Currently, Ford offers the U.S. Ranger with just one engine, a 2.3 liter turbocharged four cylinder that is on par with rivals, but it is noisy, and lags behind some of its peers in fuel economy.
That could very well change when the next generation truck arrives, with the report citing that both the 2.7 liter twin-turbocharged V6 and an all new 3.0 liter turbocharged Powerstroke V6 could find their way under the hood of the upcoming Ranger. But while the 3.0 liter will most likely remain an international exclusive due to our market’s lukewarm reception to diesel engines following the VW diesel scandal, the 2.7 liter on the other hand is the more interesting of the two, and the one that is most likely to make the trip across the pond. The current 2.7 liter is already making a splash in the F-150, where it generates 325 horsepower, and has forced Ford to modify its production quotas for the 5.0 liter Coyote V8 due to its strong showing among consumers. This would give the Ranger a serious power boost especially considering that the 2.3 liter only makes 270 horsepower. But we still expect the 2.3 to stick around for the next generation Ranger since it would more likely than not be relegated to being the new base engine for the upcoming redesigned model.
The rumors of a massive overhaul in engines, as well as the work that Ford is already undertaking with development of the new Ranger suggests that the company is very keen on addressing the truck’s age. and also avoid being left in the dust by rivals like the Chevrolet Colorado as well as the Toyota Tacoma which will also be due for their respective revamps by the time the new Ranger makes its appearance. The rebooted Ranger could also give Ford the fresh start it needs to finally bring the Ranger Raptor stateside. So far, the company has been adamantly denying that the Ranger Raptor will make the trip to the United States, but with the Colorado ZR2 and the Tacoma TRD PRO commanding very enviable slices of the mid-size off-road pickup market, we suspect that Ford will eventually change its tune, and fill the very noticeable hole between the bigger F-150 Raptor and the more mundane versions of the Ranger.