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The return of the Ford Ranger for 2019 was a welcome one, as the mid-size pickup truck class is long on competitors but short on innovation, and arrival of the Ranger could spur a new wave of one-upmanship to benefit shoppers.
Our impressions of the Ford Ranger since it came back have been positive, and PickupTrucks.com/Cars.com reviewer Aaron Bragman recently published his full review of the Ranger calling it "seriously compelling." We also tested the Ranger head to head with the Toyota Tacoma at the end of last year where the Ford came out on top against the most popular truck in the class.
There are a few things Ranger shoppers should know before buying the truck – it has a few quirks that will either endear it to shoppers or cause others to take pause.
The 2019 Ranger is offered with only a single powertrain and one wheelbase.
The only thing you're choosing between is a SuperCrew cab (crew cab) with a 5-foot bed or a SuperCab (extended cab) with a 6-foot bed. Neither offers a large amount of space for backseat passengers, but if you're going to be putting people back there regularly you pretty much have to go for the SuperCrew version; the quarters in the SuperCab are extra tight.
The Ford Ranger offers only a single engine and transmission pairing, but thankfully it's a good one. The 270-horsepower, turbocharged 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine makes 310 pounds-feet of torque and is mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. You do get a choice between rear- or four-wheel drive, but other than that, this is it.
The powertrain is very responsive and while it does shift a lot to use all of those gears, it doesn't take away from the Ranger's smooth power delivery. Bragman wrote that the eagerness of the engine makes the Ranger "a genuine joy to drive" and I concur. It absolutely crushes the base powertrains (and even some optional powertrains) of competitors. Hearing about a four-cylinder engine in a truck may cause some to wrinkle their nose, but it's only because they haven't tried this four-cylinder.
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