Detroit - Ford pulled the covers off its US market Ranger on Sunday, a day ahead of the Detroit Motor Show.

The Ranger is returning to North America after a seven year hiatus and the new one is essentially an updated version of the global Ranger (codenamed T6), which we know in South Africa.

But will our market see any of these changes?

Ford says that the US Ranger is specific to that market - and though that will certainly hold true of the engines (remember the Americans are not into diesel) and perhaps some of the more advanced technologies, speculation has it that the global model could get similar visual updates quite soon - note the new grille, headlights, bonnet and taillights.

Ford won’t say when the facelifted global Ranger is due in SA, but it will surely precede or coincide with the soon-to-be-revealed Raptor version, which is set to go on sale here in 2019.

Ranger Raptor super-bakkie to be built in SA

Back to the US-spec Ranger that you see here, the biggest mechanical departure from global models is the fitment of a 2.3-litre EcoBoost turbopetrol engine, inherited from the Mustang and mated to a new 10-speed automatic gearbox.

The US Ranger also gets some advanced driver assist technologies, such as adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection and blind spot assist with trailer coverage.

Ford is casting its pick-up truck net wider with the introduction of the Ranger to the US. Its bigger brother, the F-150, is the country’s best selling vehicle - but it remains to be seen whether the Ranger will actually complement (or partly canibalise) the F-150.

Incidentally, the Ford Ranger was SA’s second best selling vehicle in 2017. 

Sales stars of 2017: SA’s 10 best selling vehicles

IOL Motoring