Facelifted Ford Ranger Wildtrak on the road
Facelifted Ford Ranger Wildtrak on the road - ride can be choppy
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Ford Ranger 3.2 TDCi Wildtrak Double Cab 4×4

What is it?

The latest face-lifted version of the Ford Ranger pick-up, in top-selling Ranger Wildtrak Double Cab form.

What’s hot?

  • The chunky Ranger certainly looks the part – especially in Wildtrak trim. Highlights include the face-lifted Ranger’s larger headlights and grille, with the grille and mirrors painted in ‘Titanium’ finish, aluminium roof rails, plus an attractive set of 18-inch machined alloy wheels.
Car features in cab of Ranger Wildtrak
Car features in cab of Ranger Wildtrak
  • Move inside the new Ranger and you’ll first spot the new 8-inch DAB radio. Then there’s the switchgear borrowed from the Ford touchscreen with SYNC2 system that includes sat-nav, plus a car range. The Ranger also has new instruments dominated by two LCD screens. Elsewhere, in Wildtrak form, you get unique trim and mats and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.
  • It’s a bit of a step up to get in the Ranger’s cabin, and those side sills are mud traps – so watch your clothing after off-roading! However, once you’re there, it’s easy to get comfortable and the driving position is good. Double cab pick-ups can be tight in the back, but we deliberately tried the rear bench of the Ranger and were pleasantly surprised at the amount of legroom, even if the driver or front seat passenger put their seats well back.
  • Mud-plugging more important? Well, the face-lifted Ranger now has an electronic shift-on-the-fly system for high and low range gear selection. This means you can shift from two to four-wheel drive while on the move. Or is towing a priority? Well, this Ford is impressive with its 3,500kg unbraked max trailer weight.
  • This is a pick-up and you’ll be pleased to know that the bed is 1,560mm long, more than enough for a Euro-pallet in the back – but because of the tall ride height, you’ll need a forklift to load it in!
Ranger Wildtrak takes big loads but you'll need a forklift to put pallet in the back
Ranger Wildtrak takes big loads
  • On top of the load area, the latest Ranger will carry up to 1,309kg in weight.

What’s not

  • The Ranger’s ride on the standard 18-inch alloys can be best described as choppy – it’s easily unsettled by pot holes. Plus, grip and handling levels are all too easily hit.
  • The ride and handling of the new Ranger doesn’t impress when compared to the more modern Mitsubishi L200 and Nissan Navara NP300 which feels more car-like. The new electric power assisted steering system feels over-light too and would benefit from more feel.
  • This Ranger has the biggest 3.2 TDCi diesel engine, and so the 34mpg Combined Cycle fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of 173g/km aren’t really a surprise.
  • The low-down puff and five-cylinder grumble from the most popular Ranger engine – the 3.2 TDCi diesel sounds interesting. However, that five-cylinder soundtrack gets louder the faster you go and along with wind noise, it gets annoying on long motorway drives.
  • The Ranger feels solid enough, but there is no surprise and delight in the shiny, textured plastics and switchgear, which feel like they will wear quickly in use.
  • The SYNC standard touch screen audio/CD system is a welcome standard feature with its DAB radio. However, it’s fiddly and slow to react in use, making finding your favourite radio stations while driving quite difficult.
  • We like the simple instruments, but the tiny vertical rev counter is hard to read and surely an afterthought.
  • Our Wildtrak had a standard fit rear camera, but it’s still not that easy to reverse.
  • The Driver Assistance Pack offers a comprehensive suite of safety and crash prevention kit, including Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keeping Aid, Traffic Sign Recognition, Collision Mitigation and Auto High Beam. It’s a shame it’s a costly £1,350 extra!

The Verdict

2015 saw the pre-facelift Ford Ranger take over from the Toyota Hilux as the best-selling pick up in the UK. But, although improved, we think this Ford might have a battle to retain its crown. Why? Well, there are new models that have arrived and forthcoming pick-ups that drive better.

However, the face-lifted Ranger remains a great all-rounder, particularly capable off-road with a good size load bed and impressive towing ability.

Ford Ranger Wildtrak Double Cab 4×4 review

On the road price (ex VAT): £31,349
Load length: 1,560mm
Load width (max): 1,520mm
Load height: 511mm
Load capacity: 3.5 tonnes
Payload: 1,340kg
GVW: 3,200kg
Towing capacity braked/unbraked: 3,500kg/750kg
Engine: 3.2-litre six-cylinder, common rail turbo diesel
Power/torque: 197bhp/470Nm
Economy (combined): 34mpg
CO2 emissions: 218g/km

 

Ranger Wildtrak off-roading - beware the muddy sidesteps
Ranger Wildtrak off-roading – beware the mud-catching sidesteps

 

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