The eagerly awaited 2019 Ford Ranger arrives early next year offering an optional terrain management system geared for off-road use, plus what Ford says is the largest accessory offering of any truck, thanks in part to a new partnership with rooftop cargo manufacturer Yakima. Also, Ranger pricing is now officially official, with its configurator tool live, starting at $25,395 including destination for the base XL trim.
During a meeting this week with Ford dealers from the U.S. and Canada, Ford showed the off-road capabilities of the Ranger to a group of invited reporters at a simulated course at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Though there will be no Ranger Raptor for the time being, Ford showed models equipped with the FX4 off-road package, which adds technology like terrain and trail control, plus steel bash and skid plates, and compared them against a 2019 Toyota Tacoma equipped with its similar crawl control technology on a steel incline obstacle with an approach made of logs.
Trail control essentially functions as a low-speed cruise control for off-road beginners or for use in especially tricky, rugged driving situations. It takes over the tasks of acceleration and braking and sends power and braking to individual wheels. It works with any of the Ranger’s four drive modes — normal; grass, gravel and snow; mud and ruts; and sand. It also lets the driver override it by stepping on the gas or brake pedal at any time, and it works in reverse, too, at up to 5 mph.