Ford Australia has beefed up its Ranger one-tonne range with the addition of the Ranger 4×4 XL Plus, designed to meet the needs of the mining industry and government agencies as well as private customers.
Available from May 2014, the new Ranger variant has specifications and features tailored to suit industry fleet buyers, including mining companies, government departments and organisations seeking more from their vehicle fleets. If perceptions of mining fleet king Toyota becoming complacent are true, then this aggressive push from Ford should shake things up.
On top of the existing Ranger XL specification, the Ranger XL Plus adds running boards, a second battery, expanded wiring harness, all-terrain tyres, an optional steel bull-bar and other features which, according to Ford, are exactly what customers in this segment have been asking for.
The Ranger 4×4 XL Plus will be available in a choice of Single Cab Chassis, Double Cab Chassis and Double Cab Pick-up. The new model takes advantage of Ranger’s 5-star ANCAP safety rating, required for new vehicle purchases by most large fleet companies these days.
Ranger 4×4 XL Plus comes standard with Ford’s 3.2-litre turbo-diesel engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. It also has a locking rear differential and a tow bar rated to the truck’s peak 3,500 kg towing capacity. Other standard features include:
- 4×4 shields / mud flaps
- Daytime running lights
- Running boards (Double Cabs only)
- 17-inch steel wheels and All-Terrain tyres (Continental 265/65 R17)
- Heavy duty canvas seat covers (as shown above which do not obstruct seat-mounted thorax airbag deployment)
- Expanded wiring harness with extra pre-wired electrical circuits and switch bezel (for easy installation of extra lights, radios etc)
- Front battery 75 amp hours
- Second battery 80 amp hours deep cycle discharge gel battery
- Second battery isolator
- Moulded black bumpers
Optional: Steel bull bar (retains 5-star ANCAP rating with mountings for driving lights, antennas, flags etc)
As with all Rangers, the Ranger 4×4 XL Plus has Bluetooth®1, USB and iPod2 integration and voice control over the radio, CD, iPod, USB, and mobile phone. Similarly, cruise control is standard across the entire range.
Ford Australia Vice President of Marketing, Sales and Service, Graeme Whickman, said Ford had worked with key industries, including the mining sector, to develop the Ranger XL Plus.
“These industries have very specific demands on their vehicles so that’s why we created the Ranger 4×4 XL Plus,” Whickman said.
“It will be a popular addition to mining industry and business sector fleets but we also expect there to be strong support from private customers who have a particular need for this type of vehicle.”
The Manufacturer’s List Price is $46,280 for the Single Cab Chassis, $51,760 for the Double Cab Chassis and $52,760 for the Double Cab Pick-up.
The 4×4 XL Plus complements the recently improved Ranger line-up for 2014, which includes SRS airbags across the range, addition of the Ranger XLS model in both 2.2-litre manual/auto and 3.2 auto variants and improved supply of the top-of-the-range Wildtrak model.
In 2013 the Ford Ranger was named the International Pick-up of the Year. It is being manufactured in three continents and sold in more than 180 countries.