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Long-Term reviews of the 2019+ Ranger can be found here.

I will be using this thread to share experiences that both owners and automotive publications had with the new Ranger. A lot isn't known and information from initial reviews can be limiting. Hopefully in these long-term reviews we're able to see how the Range actually performs. Feel free to share your own experience and/or findings.

2019 Ford Ranger long-term introduction
(Autoblog)

The 2019 Ford Ranger is a big-deal truck for Ford, and, at this point, we’ve reviewed it in quite a few scenarios, including some global variants in Australia and New Zealand. We put the truck through its paces in our First Drive review. Then we brought it in for our mid-size truck comparison test, defeating the 2019 Jeep Gladiator, 2019 Chevy Colorado and 2019 Toyota Tacoma. Most recently, we spent a week with one in Portland to see how it liked West Coast city living. Every test has returned favorable results, but now it’s time to see how we like the Ranger over a longer period of time.

The Ranger has impressed so far both on and off road, though we found it to be a well-rounded vehicle as opposed to a standout in any one area. While it wasn’t originally designed for America, Ford has extensively revised the truck for our market with updated styling both inside and out, a new powertrain and upgraded components on the frame and suspension. The bones of this truck may be old, but it’s far from dated.

What we got

The Ford Ranger is available in a couple different configurations, but powertrain options are limited for the time being. We opted for the four-door SuperCrew model with the 5-foot bed and four-wheel drive. There are three trim levels (XL, XLT and Lariat), but we chose the mid-level XLT trim — the same one that won our comparison test earlier this summer. The base price of the truck was $35,310 before options, including the hefty $1,195 destination charge. That includes the 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder making 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque mated to a 10-speed transmission — the only engine/transmission combination available.

Getting this truck dirty is definitely on the short-list of things to do, so we headed straight for the $1,295 FX4 Off-Road Package. That package includes essentials like an electronic-locking rear differential, off-road suspension, all-terrain tires, skid plates for the underbody vitals, plus Ford’s Terrain Management System and Terrain Control. You get the neat FX4 decals, but we also chose to add the Sport Appearance Package to spice things up even more. This got us dark painted wheels and dark trim throughout the car’s exterior that adds an extra dosage of spunk to the Ranger’s look. We wanted adaptive cruise control, so we added the $795 Technology Package that also includes Ford’s navigation system. To make sure the Ranger is up to any towing tasks we might have, we also selected the Trailer-Tow Package. Another necessity was the $495 Toughbed spray-in liner. Other options include $395 Hot Pepper Red paint, $195 remote start, $135 floor liner and $95 keyless pad entry system, rounding the price out to the final total of $41,175.

Why we got it

Ford’s Ranger was an important player in the compact truck segment until sales dwindled and it left the class entirely after 2012. Its absence has been taken advantage of by the sales-leading Toyota Tacoma, and more recently, the Chevy Colorado. Now that Ford and Jeep are back in the game, this segment is pulsing with new blood. The big question is, can Ford tackle the current king with a new product and familiar name? Nostalgia is potent, and those that remember the last Ranger have fond memories of that little truck.

At over $40,000, an F-150 with similar equipment is entirely in reach, but the Ranger is aimed at a younger, more active audience that values the small footprint and better maneuverability over the capability of a full-size pickup. We already reaped the benefits of our Ranger’s small size on a road trip to Buffalo, NY that started just outside of Detroit. The FX4 off-road suspension may have been a slight bother on the way there — it’s bouncy and uncomfortable over rough highways — but the narrower footprint was a dream when trying to navigate city streets. According to the truck’s computer, we averaged 23.3 mpg on the several-hundred-mile journey to Buffalo on a highway-heavy route, close to the 24 mpg EPA rating. We’ll be watching the fuel economy closely in our time with the Ranger.

We will be putting our Ranger through plenty of more tests beyond long road trips before our time is done, so stay tuned for more impressions and thoughts on Ford’s newest truck.
 

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This is a really good idea Rod! Muscle Cars and Trucks released the first part of their 4,000 mile road trip review with the Lariat FX4 edition. They start off with an intro to the trip and the Ranger's fuel economy. The reviewer seems to be getting 17-20 total mpg which is disappointing.
The sun’s not up and breakfast will consist of buffalo jerky, percolated coffee, and a banana for each of us. Camping and road trips can easily convert even the most persnickety foodie into a grab-n-go chow hound. The pragmatic importance of necessity supersedes frivolous matters of arbitrary tastes – though to be honest, buffalo jerky is pretty good any time of the day.

A good road trip, which must include some form of camping along the way, will pragmatically reveal the necessary over the frivolous for a vehicle that any other kind of testing rarely will. It’s one thing to drive carefully curated roads in some exotic locale to get a first impression of a vehicle’s dynamics, technology and other characteristics but it’s only a taste. The full meal evaluation comes when you clamp your personal 1,500-pound pop-up camper trailer onto the bumper and haul it 4,000 miles around America’s West. This is the kind of trip where your fingernails stay dirty for a week and your hair has that subtle scent of last night’s fire pit – OK, it’s not that subtle. The vehicle becomes an intricate member of the group, not just moving people and things to various places but serving as quick shelter from a flash thunder storm or playing the role of a screen from other travelers by strategically parking it to block the view of people walking by.

A week into this trip, the cab has a faint smell of back sweat and stale vegetable chips and white and green charging cables sticking out of every port to charge two phones, a camera, a lantern and something else that I can’t remember what that cable is for.

A good road trip will replace that glossy shine with dust and dead bugs splattered on the windshield, grille and mirrors in nature’s version of bug gut Jackson Pollack. Put a full work-week behind the steering wheel and you’ll know if the interior is livable. And you will understand if you can pass that annoying Ram 2500 hauling a 30-foot Jayco trailer when the driver rolls coal as your bumper passes his and there’s only 1,000 feet before two lanes become one. It was a dick move for sure.

Roughly 2,500 miles into the trip, the 2019 Ford Ranger Lariat FX4 edition, a fully-loaded 4X4 pickup with a price tag of $45,000 has performed beautifully. And for the record, we left that Ram in a dusty tailwind somewhere outside of Cody, Wyoming.

Even as I write this, we (my wife and I) are 279 miles northwest of Cheyenne, Wyoming, a mile above sea level on a plateau with nothing but summer-worn fields of fading sagebrush and an endless blue sky. This pickup is providing me with WiFi access even while my phone’s T-Moble is showing zero bars. Cowboys likely don’t use T-Mobile, or at least the ones who want to make phone calls. But they could use the Ranger as its use of technology focuses on the practical and workable instead of luxury for the sake of luxury.

The 2019 Ford Ranger, a pickup favorite of mine that left America eight years ago, returns more powerful and chock-full of technology, most of which makes this an extremely appealing workhorse for someone that does not need a bigger fullsize pickup. Full disclosure: I’ve always preferred midsize pickups because I have never had the need to haul a 30-foot Jayco trailer. And frankly, with a towing capacity of 7,500 pounds (when equipped with towing package and trailer brake control), the Ranger could easily fill the needs of any suburban cowhand.

So, brass tacks: For getting the job done, the Ford Ranger delivers and then some. First, the powertrain: The 2.3 L Ecoboost turbocharged four-cylinder engine creates 270 horsepower and 310-pound-feet of torque that often left me forgetting there was a trailer attached to the back. Mash the accelerator and the Ranger’s twin scroll turbo lets the truck charge forward with little lag or delay and spins through its 10-speed automatic transmission quickly, efficiently and seemingly effortless. On hard acceleration, say trying to pick up speed as you enter the highway, the Ranger blasts forward. This was particularly handy driving through the narrow roads of Yellowstone National Park, where passing zones are short and a burst of power is all you need to pass those lookie-loos slowing down to take photos of a tree or a lake or a buffalo. The well-calibrated transmission reacts in milliseconds to downshift to the aggressive accelerator input and jumps with turbocharged power that provided immediate additional power even while crossing the Continental Divide at 8,262 feet.

Cruising at 75 mph – the speed that felt best with the trailer – the engine sang at about 1,900 rpm but it could easily get up to 85 mph. The bigger all terrain wheels did make for a bouncy ride when the right combination of concrete seams and speed were met. But it’s an easy price to pay when you look that much cooler. And I did, as judged by all of the pickup owners at campsites in South Dakota, Montana and Wyoming who would walk up and ask, “So what do you think of that Ford Ranger?”

“It’s a blast, though its gas mileage blows,” I would most often reply.

While the vehicle is rated at 20 mpg in city driving and 24 mpg on the highway, we managed 17 mpg overall, which isn’t great, but is acceptable considering the trailer we towed and the altitudes we were driving at. When we returned to lower lands across the Midwest, our mileage improved to 20 mpg.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't care so much about mileage, durability and build quality is what I'm after.
 

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This is a really good idea Rod! Muscle Cars and Trucks released the first part of their 4,000 mile road trip review with the Lariat FX4 edition. They start off with an intro to the trip and the Ranger's fuel economy. The reviewer seems to be getting 17-20 total mpg which is disappointing.
Here's part two of their review. It focuses on the interior mostly but talks about the Ranger's technology.

 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've been seeing more of the road trip crowd buy these aka younger people, late 20's to 30's
 

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The second part of the Autoblog review just got published @Rod. They really like the turbo 4-cylinder, but not as much with the transmission.


When it comes to compact pickup trucks, engines are pretty ho-hum. They're underpowered four-cylinder engines or perfectly average V6s. Our long-term 2019 Ford Ranger's turbo engine is different. It can actually elicit some enjoyment.

That turbocharger hanging off the exhaust side of the engine is really what makes a difference. It provides a competitive 270 horsepower, but also, and more important, the most torque of any gas-powered engine in its class at 310 pound-feet. And between the fast-spooling turbo and the fact the torque comes on in the middle of the powerband, you don't have to wait long or work hard to extract that power and torque. It has effortless, enthusiastic power.

Somewhat surprisingly, the engine sounds good, too. Tromp on the throttle and you're rewarded with a deep throaty gargle and a hint of turbo whistle. It's a refreshing change from nasal V6s and thrashing naturally aspirated inline-fours of other trucks.

As much as I love this engine, I do have one main complaint: The transmission it's coupled to could use some improvement. It's smooth, but it's slow to change gears, and it sometimes hunts. The "sport" shift setting seems to reduce the amount of hunting and multiple gear changes, but of course it also holds revs longer than is desirable in normal driving. There's no convenient way to do your own shifting, either, as you have to rely on the silly little toggle switch on the shift lever for changing gears. Basically, some reprogramming and shift paddles would fix my issues with it.

Even with my transmission gripes, the power and soundtrack make this my favorite compact truck powertrain on the market right now. And it's good enough that I think it would make a great base for a fast Ranger, too; either a U.S.-spec Raptor or my dream of a Ranger ST street truck. The fact that the engine is based on the turbo engine in the Mustang certainly opens it up to more power and easy modding. In the meantime, I'll just enjoy the stock engine of our long-termer.
 
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