Dashcam videos can be divvied up into two categories - "I can't believe that just happened," and "You're lucky to be alive." The former is usually quite funny and entertaining, while the latter is usually kind of scary; involving a close call between our camera car and something quite dangerous.
Bloomberg has an interesting read from Oklahoma, following the story of Jim Ed Bull, a postal worker with the longest route in the country – a staggering 187.6 miles. For reference, that's like driving from the far northern side of Detroit to the far eastern side of Cleveland every day just to deliver the mail. Bull does this five times per week.
Ford has been in hot water in Australia ever since it announced plans to end local production of the Falcon and Territory SUV. Besides canceling a model that is to Oz what the Mustang is to America, the end of production means more than a few folks will be out of work.
Avert your eyes now if you're jealous that the global version of the Ford Ranger is not offered in the US. Ford's midsize pickup is being tuned up to take on the 2014 Dakar Rally, and the result is a truck that is probably even cooler than any F-150 SVT Raptor we've ever seen in the States. Ford is actually building two versions of the truck for Dakar, which will run from January 5 through January 18, covering more than 5,000 miles from Argentina to Chile.
Ford looks to be working on a new SUV version of its global Ranger pickup truck. An early prototype of a seven-passenger SUV based on the Ranger has been spotted testing in Australia, and word has it buyers in the region could expect to see the model in showrooms as soon as 2014, where it could sail under the Endeavour or Everest badges. Ford Australia currently sells the Territory SUV, so there's some chance that this model could be a successor to that throne, as well.
We're set to record Autoblog Podcast #321 tonight, and you can drop us your questions and comments regarding the rest of the week's news via our Q&A module below. Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes if you haven't already done so, and if you want to take it all in live, tune in to our UStream (audio only) channel at 10:00 PM Eastern tonight.
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.
Believe it or not, the full-size pickup trucks that dominate the North American market don't find much favor in other corners of the globe. Elsewhere, powerful mid-sized trucks rule the work site, and the judges behind the 2013 International Pick-Up Award are cognizant of that. They awarded the 2013 Ford Ranger the honor with a unanimous vote. The truck earned praise for its on-road manners and off-road prowess, as well as its towing and payload capacities.
PickupTrucks.com has turned to its friends in Australia for a look at a few of the most popular midsize pickups found Down Under. The result is the Global Pickup Shootout that pits the reigning-champion Toyota Hilux against the Holden Colorado, Volkswagen Amarok and the Ford Ranger. Each truck was faced with a battery of tests that included on-road and off-road performance as well as design and value evaluations.
It's been more than five months since the Twin Cities Assembly Plant in St. Paul, Minnesota went dark. The facility produced Ford vehicles for nearly 100 years before finally being closed as part of ongoing restructuring. The closure coincided with the production of the very last North American Ford Ranger.
As we prepare to flip our calendars from 2011 to 2012, it's time to say goodbye to a handful of vehicles that are being sent to the Great Parking Lot In The Sky before the 2012 model year completely takes hold. And while we're not exactly upset about having to bid farewell to things like the Mitsubishi Endeavor, Mazda Tribute or Chevrolet HHR, there are a few vehicles that we're truly going to miss.
The Ranger pickup has been an integral part of the Ford truck lineup for decades. But later this month, that will cease to be – at least here in the States. That's when the very last Ranger will roll off the assembly line in St. Paul, Minnesota. And what do you know, it's already found a buyer.