Ever since it’s planned reintroduction was first announced, the idea of a 2019 Ford Ranger (preceding a resurrected 2020 Ford Bronco) reflects a master stroke in Ford’s ability to thoughtfully flesh out any lineup.
Despite the F-Series’ indisputable position as supreme ruler of all-things-truck, one might argue that the F-150 (however capable) was stretched thin covering the gamut of mid-to-full-size offerings. Bottom-line, the absence of a compact / true midsize entry in Ford’s lineup was felt by the consumer, and Ford’s decision to bring it back from the dead after a 7-year retirement is both prudent and welcome within the North American market.
Simply put, midsize pickups provide an accessible jumping-off point for those who want the utilitarian versatility of a truck, but may not need the full-size or SuperDuty capability. Having twice purchased used Ford Rangers in my teens and early-20’s, I have experienced this first-hand. And speaking from personal experience, I expect that the Ranger will retain its strength in terms of resale, appealing to second-owners just as it always has.
This wide appeal is only furthered by the Ranger’s sporty redesign, channeling some of the badass design-notes that (in more exaggerated styling) is celebrated in the overall aesthetic of the F-150 Raptor. With that in mind, and considering the Raptor’s staggering popularity, it’s not a stretch to think that a badass Raptor variant of the Ranger could find its way to market in the coming years. Maybe that’s a stretch, but at bare minimum, the Ranger’s return is a decisive defensive move against GM’s and Toyota’s growing foothold within the midsize segment.
For a thorough breakdown of the 2019 Ranger, and everything it has to offer, enjoy this hands-on tour: