Now here's some welcome news. Car and Driver reports Ford is seriously mulling a replacement for the recently deceased Ranger, but the successor to the compact pickup's throne may not look anything like what we've seen from the nameplate in the past.

While speaking at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, Doug Scott, marketing manager for Ford Trucks, said there's still a market for a smaller pickup, but that buyers expect to see a larger differentiation between the smaller utility vehicles and their full size counterparts in price, capability and fuel economy.

According to Scott, that means a vehicle with a payload capacity of around 1,000 pounds paired with a towing capacity of 3,000 pounds and "a dramatic reduction in fuel consumption." But the biggest piece of that recipe is the price tag, and Scott says to keep the MSRP far enough away from the already cheap F-150, the answer could come in the form of a unibody design. Scott says target customers in this market don't care whether the truck has a traditional frame or not, so long as it's tough enough to do the job and has the capability they need.

We should be clear here: Ford hasn't approved such a vehicle for production, but the company is working on developing a business case for the model. Even so, it could be years before buyers see another small pickup on dealer lots.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 234 Comments
      atvman
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm thinking it'll basically be a Transit Connect with a bed.
        j0nny5
        • 1 Year Ago
        @atvman
        Hopefully with a more "pickup" like nose and windshield rake.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @atvman
        [blocked]
      bootsnchaps60
      • 1 Year Ago
      Great idea, have had Rangers and they were a good size. The F150 and larger are just too big.
      whofan
      • 1 Year Ago
      If Honda would do a few things to the Ridgeline like straighten out the angled bed rails and get some gas mileage out of it they would have a big winner. Last time Ford built a unibody truck was 1964. They can do it again. Chrysler seems to be on the same page as well. I`m all for the concept if it`s done right and they get better mileage than a half ton truck. All I do is pull a 18ft aluminium boat and haul light loads. The Half ton truck has got retarded big. It`s a primative ride as well.
      Mlwaverunr
      • 1 Year Ago
      Two thumbs up from me. As a former long time Ranger owner, I want a pickup that I can haul light loads when needed, can reach over the side/tailgate to access the bed, and see what is behind me. I would love a Falcon ute, but I doubt that it will come to the states.
      VICTOR
      • 1 Year Ago
      I would buy a New Ranchero today... Turbo 4.
      cdwrx
      • 1 Year Ago
      Something like a 3/4 Avalanche would suit me just fine. Gotta fit a motorcycle (w/ tailgate open is fine) and seat four but not necessarily at the same time.
        Dump
        • 1 Year Ago
        @cdwrx
        Agreed as well. This is a no-brainer. The Ford F-150 has gotten a heck of lot bigger in the past few revisions. Ford, GM, Ram needs updates to the Ranger/F-100, Colorado, & Dakota. Right, 3/4 or 3/5 the size (mid-sizers) that offer AWD, V8 or V8-like torque, 4-dr cab, etc. This is 1 area where the need to upsize each new model has definitely left a hole in the segment. This is an area that Toyota, Nissan, VW, Honda could have taken advantage of; if they bothered to pay attention to the right customers.
        19secondsslow
        • 1 Year Ago
        @cdwrx
        ABSOLUTELY! It doesn't have to tow hay wagons or crawl over rocks, but it has to get me, a friend or two and our mountain bikes into the backcountry. Something rugged, decent ground clearance, 4WD 'cause it snows here. 4cy, manual, and takes up as little space on the road as possible to get the job done. And, while we're wishing and venting, how about simple controls for air and sound - big knobs or sliders that you can operate by feel, with gloves on, rather than poking at tiny buttons or squinting at a screen. It seems to me that what I really want is a 1985 Nissan King Cab. Somebody make one, please.
          cdwrx
          • 1 Year Ago
          @19secondsslow
          I drive a '02 Tacoma Double Cab Pre-Runner TRD now and if it had the functionality of a mid-gate like the Avalanche it could easily be 1.5" shorter and do everything I need it to do. Throw in some bed storage like the Ridgeline and call it a day.
        sdn
        • 1 Year Ago
        @cdwrx
        Yes - +1
      BryNum
      • 1 Year Ago
      Unibody or full frame, most people will buy it for price/appearance. Hardcore truck guys are a minority in the US population. Most people in the US don't even know what a unibody is. Fuel economy/price/styling sells. Do your thing Ford, and please don't mess this up.
      jcnspots
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ford could do a simple, basic 4 cylinder diesel pickup for $15,000 easily. Basically a mid 80's Toyota or Isuzu, regular or extended cab, base trim (crank windows, vinyl flooring instead of carpet, etc), make AC, power steering and the like optional, and then have a deluxe trim level with carpet and more bling available. They wouldn't be able to make them fast enough.
      philips0811
      • 1 Year Ago
      I've got my 1999 Ranger, 170K miles, runs great, I've done all kinds of things with it. I can't believe they discontinued it. How about the diesel Ranger they sell in other countries?
      REOakes
      • 1 Year Ago
      Great news. I don't want a large truck. I need something fuel efficient, small, and capable of light duty (stuff from Home Depot, etc). I hope Ford does this!
      joynerz
      • 1 Year Ago
      I just traded my '08 Ranger XLT only because I wanted an AWD wagon. My Ranger was absolutely trouble-free the entire time I owned it.
        Rodney
        • 1 Year Ago
        @joynerz
        Yeah, down to the last rusted off screw and bolt.
          rcyrilj
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Rodney
          I had a 1983 Ranger (first year of production) that was actually purchased in 1982. I finally had to get rid of it in 2011(that is 29 years in case you are counting) because I could not get parts for it any more. Had an initial problem with fuel economy caused by a timing belt issue (2.3 liter 4 cylinder). Once that was fixed only normal maintenance for the next 250,000 miles.
      FRED
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have had 4 Explorers, the latest 2012 and have put well over 100,000 on each of them and have replaced only brakes and tires on all of them. Ford makes some great trucks!
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