Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Ford Ranger facelift Test Drive Review
Cookies on Businesscar

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Business Car website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookies at any time

BusinessCar magazine website email Awards mobile

The start point for the best source of fleet information

Ford Ranger facelift Test Drive Review

Date: 08 March 2016   |   Author: James Dallas

Category: Pick-up
Price (excl. VAT): £23,795
Key rival: Mitsubishi L200
On sale: January 2016

Ford has given its Ranger pick-up a mid-life facelift, and the redesigned grille, sharper lines in the bonnet, slimmer and more rectangular headlights, plus bigger blue oval badge, make the truck even more muscular. The interior, meanwhile is classier now, although it wasn't shabby before.

This incarnation not only has to compete with the new Mitsubishi L200 and Nissan Navara as well as the forthcoming Toyota Hilux, VW Amarok and debut trucks from Renault, Mercedes and Fiat Professional, it also has to maintain the impressive momentum it has generated over the past four years.

According to the manufacturer, the previous version hit 8033 sales in 2015 - up from 5500 in 2014 - 4310 in 2013 and 3000 in its debut year of 2012.

The line-up consists of XL, XLT, Limited and Wildtrak trim levels with prices going from £17,795, excluding VAT as is the case with all prices quoted here, for the XL 4x2 Super Cab to £26,245 for the Wildtrak automatic.

The model is available in Regular, Super and Double-cab formats, but the Regular XL is now only offered as a 4x4 and thus has a slightly higher price tag than the entry-level 4x2 Super Cab.

The Wildtrak retains its 200hp 3.2-litre powertrain, albeit with tweaks to improve efficiency, but the rest of the line-up gets the new 160hp 2.2 engine to replace the 125hp and 150hp units in the pre-facelifted Ranger.

The brand claims to have improved efficiency by up to 17% with the introduction of stop-start, new final-drive ratios and electric power-assisted steering.

The new 160hp TDCi achieves an official range best of 43.5mpg and 171g/km of CO2 - when combined with the Eco Axle that cuts towing capacity to 1800kg - compare with the previous range best of 36.2mpg and 206g/km. If you want the 3500kg towing limit, which remains class-leading along with the Isuzu D-max and Nissan Navara, then you will sacrifice 3.7mpg in fuel efficiency.

As it's unlikely many operators would want to halve their towing capability, this means the official figures of 39.8mpg and 185g/km fall short of the Navara's 44.1mpg and 167g/km, and the 42.8mpg and 169g/km of Mitsubishi's L200.

We drove the double-cabbed Ranger in the Limited trim that sits beneath the Wildtrak halo model, but is the highest-specced of the 160hp-powered versions.

These two models are expected to take about four out of five sales. Our truck had the six-speed manual gearbox that Ford says is likely to be about twice as popular as the six-speed automatic alternative.
At £23,795, the Limited is a bit more expensive than the N-Connecta, the second top model out of five in the Nissan Navara range, which comes in at £22,793.

The 190hp 2.3 N-Connecta also gets touchscreen satnav and a colour reversing camera, both of which are only included as standard on the Ranger's Wildtrak trim. A reversing camera is available as a £250 option on the Limited and satnav can be added for £350.

The 178hp 2.4 Warrior, which sits below the Barbarian in the Mitsubishi L200 range, also gets satnav and a rear-view camera included in its £23,049 price tag, although it does not have touchscreen controls and the reversing camera does not come with an audible alert.

But the Ranger Limited's cabin certainly doesn't have a Spartan feel and features include a coolbox in the centre console, the Sync 2 connectivity system (with eight-inch touchscreen), a heated driver's seat and rear parking sensors. The exterior includes privacy glass for the rear windows plus 17-inch alloys.

The Limited has a payload capacity of 1092kg, a slight advantage compared with the Warrior's 1045kg and the N-Connecta's 1047kg.

The Limited is an extremely competent off-roader with 4x4 available in both high and low-range gearing, for tougher conditions. But for tackling the most extreme off-road conditions then the Mitsubishi L200's Super Select 4WD-II system beats anything else on the pick-up market.

In 2WD the Limited handles at least as well as any rival on-road, whether tackling country lanes, B-roads or motorways. The steering is true and offers plenty of feedback, the gear lever is positioned within the most comfortable reach, and the changes are sharp and precise.

Body roll when cornering is well controlled, and the all-round sure-footedness inspires confidence. Our only criticisms would be that engine noise could be intrusive when accelerating and, without a load in the back, the ride tended to be bouncy over rougher road surfaces.

Power delivery from the 160hp engine is generous and we cannot imagine that this would diminish greatly with a load on board, which could make it difficult to justify opting for the 200hp 3.2-litre drivetrain that is available with the Limited and is the only engine offered on the Wildtrak.

Ford Ranger Limited 2.2 TDCi

Model price range (excl. VAT) £17,795-£26,245
Insurance group 12E
Warranty 5yrs/60,000mls
Service intervals 2yrs/20,000mls
Load bay length 1549mm
Min/max load bay width 1139mm/1560mm
Gross payload 1098kg
Engine size/power 2198cc/160hp
Fuel consumption 39.8mpg
CO2 185g/km


A fine all-rounder that comes top for driveability
  • Best-handling pick-up
  • Decent new engine
  • Good standard kit
  • Efficiency isn't quite up with the class best