We had previously reported that we thought Ford’s midsize truck would be all-new for the 2023 model year. But since we haven’t heard anything about the truck for the U.S. market and we’re halfway through the 2022 model year, we’ve revised our prediction and now expect the next-gen Ford Ranger as a 2024 model.
This falls in line with previous quotes from Ford Motor Co. CEO Jim Farley, who confirmed the truck would arrive in the U.S. sometime in 2023.
Looking at the global press release and some recent spy shots, we’re starting to get a clearer picture of what to expect from the 2024 Ford Ranger.
Recent spy shots from SpiedBilde, show a 2024 Ford Ranger equipped in a Crew Cab (or is it a Double Cab?) configuration with a standard (6-foot) bed – and that’s new. Currently the only way you can get the longer bed is with the Regular Cab model – the Crew Cab is short bed only.
Since this was spied outside of Dearborn, Michigan, we have to assume this is a U.S. spec model, and since it wasn’t mentioned in the global reveal, this will likely be a U.S. exclusive feature.
The global materials highlight several features that debuted on the 2021 Ford F-150, like the zone lighting, a digital display cluster and an overlarge vertical infotainment screen as well as on- and off-road drive modes.
One thing the global materials showcase that we darn sure aren’t getting in the U.S.: the V-6 turbodiesel.
The Ford Bronco offers both the 2.3-liter and 2.7-liter EcoBoost engines as options, and since Raptor and Bronco have the same underpinnings, we could see Ford putting one of these engines in the 2024 Ranger – likely the 2.7 – and then offering a hybrid powertrain as the base engine option. That’s what it did with Maverick, and that has met with overwhelming success.
However, it Ford wants to use the same 2.5-liter hybrid powertrain it put in the Maverick either the engine or the electric motor would need a power boost because the hybrid system in the compact truck delivers 191 horsepower, while the base powertrain in the current Ranger delivers 270.
While we think a hybrid is a given for the 2024 Ranger, the big question mark will be if Ford decides to bring a Ranger Lightning to market. With the current sell-out success of the F-150 Lightning, it would make a lot of sense. Especially since a midsize truck as an EV would be a lot more palatable to the truck crowd with less towing and payload capacities, and therefore less paranoia about the range.
Another big question mark concerns Ford’s Pro Power Onboard. This was a novel feature on the new F-150, and it was a big hit on the hybrid models – especially during some recent power outages in Texas. But, is this something that makes sense on a midsize truck?
There is no mention of it on the global truck, but if you look closely at photos of the bed, you do see a metal cover over the area where such a system would reside. So, we’re still TBD here.
The new midsize truck from Ford is coming – just not as soon as we had hoped. We’ll likely see an introduction in early 2023 with the actual production pushing out in mid-2023. Since the 2019 Ford Ranger was already late in its lifecycle when it came to the U.S. market (it had been in the global market since 2011), it looked old and felt old by the time we got it.
This new truck will be far from that since, with the introduction of the Maverick, Ford has shown it’s committed to smaller trucks.
Plus, with a new Toyota Tacoma, Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon on the imminent horizon, the 2024 Ranger will have to jump over a much bigger bar this time around. We expect big things Ranger. Please don’t disappoint.