Bold and beau­ti­ful

Warwickshire Telegraph - - FRONT PAGE - By John Mur­doch

BIG, bold and all-Amer­i­can the Ford Ranger is a tough and rugged pick-up that is a global suc­cess for the man­u­fac­turer. It can be bought in a va­ri­ety of styles and with a choice of a cou­ple of en­gines and right at the top of the range sits the dou­ble-cab Wildtrak.

It com­bines the abil­ity to shift and move bags of hard­ware with the com­fort and lux­ury of an SUV. The Wildtrak also of­fers fan­tas­tic tow­ing ca­pac­ity as well as the tal­ent to go off-road and tackle the rough stuff.

A good-look­ing pick-up, the Ranger’s ex­te­rior style is im­proved by a num­ber of up­mar­ket de­sign fea­tures but it is no soft touch.

You can wade through rivers, tra­verse rough ter­rain and slip through mud and snow with ease be­cause the Ranger has enough grunt to do it.

On reg­u­lar roads the Wildtrak be­haves like most very large SUVs, although it does feel a bit bouncy at times, and on mo­tor­ways it will cruise with de­cent ride and han­dling.

The Wildtrak fea­tures 18-inch ma­chined al­loy wheels, a Ti­ta­ni­um­ef­fect front grille, power-fold­able door mir­rors with in­te­grated turn­ing lights, side steps, alu­minium fin­ish roof rails, pud­dle lights and an aero­dy­namic sports bar with load­box il­lumn­i­na­tion.

In­side, the dou­ble-cab of­fers enough room for a fam­ily or for five work­ers and boasts equip­ment to sat­isfy leisure own­ers. You get satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion, Blue­tooth with voice con­trol, a rear view cam­era, a large touch­screen with Ford SYNC 3 tech­nol­ogy, a DAB ra­dio, heated wind­screen, rear park­ing sen­sors, a choice of seven in­te­rior light­ing colours, a cool­box in the cen­tre con­sule and a num­ber of power sock­ets.

You can also switch at the touch of a but­ton be­tween a choice of drives and low and high ra­tios.

Safety fea­tures in­clude a raft of airbags, hill launch as­sist, hill de­scent con­trol and an elec­tronic sta­bil­ity pro­gramme with trac­tion con­trol and emer­gency brake as­sist.

This Wildtrak came with the larger 3.2 TDCi diesel power plant com­bined with a man­ual six-speed gear­box. It punts out 200ps and gives the Ranger a top speed of 109mph and a 0-62mph time of 10.9 sec­onds.

It has a claimed com­bined fig­ure of 33.6mpg and I got sur­pris­ingly close to that.

The sporty Wildtrak stylng cer­tainly makes the Ranger the best-look­ing pick-up on our roads and it has what it takes to at­tract busi­ness and life­style buy­ers. It is a head-turner but is more than ca­pa­ble of do­ing the busi­ness in any con­di­tions.

TEST DRIVE FORD RANGER WILDTRAK

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