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St Ann farmer lays down Ranger challenge

Published:Sunday | June 17, 2012 | 12:00 AM
The driver demonstrates, literally, the off-road capability of the 2012 Ford Ranger during a recent test drive at Caymanas Estates, in St Catherine.
After test driving the 2012 Ford Ranger, Sylvester Setal, seen here in his 2011 model, requested that it be taken to his farm in rural St Ann where the hilly terrain and bad road conditions would be the ideal test. He told Automotives that while the older model 'performs well', he would definitely 'want a next one' if the 2012 version passes his test.
Built Ford-tough, with its 1.4-ton workload and six-speed dual gearbox the all-new Ford Ranger sets a high standard. - Photos by Christopher Serju
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Christopher Serju, Gleaner Writer

"Take it up to my farm and let me see how it reacts there!"

That was the challenge St Ann farmer Sylvester Setal threw out to Kingston Industrial Garage Limited, local authorised Ford dealers, after test driving the 2012 Ford Ranger at Caymanas Estates recently.

Pointing to the distant hills, he told Automotives his terrain is just as hilly and, while satisfied with the Ranger's performance on the obstacle course, wanted to put the new pickup through its paces under 'real' conditions.

If satisfied, Setal, who owns a 2011 Ford Ranger, will make another purchase. "Yes, me want one next one," he shared with Automotives, explaining that the one he has "performs very well and I can recommend it".

It's a challenge Carlos (Ricky) Georzoung and the team at KIG are likely to take up, not only because they know how it will work out, but more for the opportunity to get some new out-of-town pictures of the vehicle in action.

The company's claim to have rebuilt the Ranger from "the ground up" is accurate. Combining the toughness and capability of a pickup with smart technology and outstanding safety features, while still offering the highest standards of quality and comfort, it is the first pickup to achieve the maximum five-star rating under the Euro NCAP crash-test protocol.

Everything is new - engines, gearboxes, frame, suspension, steering system, brakes, chassis, exterior sheet metal and vehicle interior. The list continues with brand-new features for safety and passenger comfort. Designed to be best-in-class, or among the leaders in every area important to customers, especially those who use it for both work and leisure purposes, the newest Ranger delivers more payload and class-leading towing capability and, at the same time, is fitted out with innovative and comfort features.

Once Ranger prototypes were ready, they were tested extensively in 15 countries around the world to deliver a vehicle that is tough enough for the harsh conditions of the Australian Outback, provides confidence when driven on high-speed German autobahns and is reliable when driven for hours in the endlessness of Argentina's Pampas.

Bigger than previous model

At 5,359 mm long and 1,850 mm wide, the new Ranger is bigger than the previous-generation model. The all-new Ford Ranger powertrains have been engineered to give customers a superior combination of power and torque at class-leading fuel efficiency. Three new engines are available to suit every purpose and pocket.

Leading the way is Ranger's new 3.2-litre, five-cylinder diesel engine. With a flat torque curve giving higher levels of torque over a broad rpm, Ranger is able to pull full loads on the highway easily without having to change gear. Ninety per cent of its peak 470-Nm torque is available from 1700 to 3500 rpm, providing better engine flexibility. The fuel consumption of the 3.2-litre engine in a combined cycle is ranging from 10.0 L/100 km on a 4x4 manual transmission variant to 10.6 /100 km on a full-option 4x4 model with automatic transmission.

For those who prefer an engine with a smaller displacement, the 2.2-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine delivers peak torque output of 375 Nm and power output of 110 kW (150 PS) by utilising variable geometry turbochargers that allow more accurate control of boost pressure over a wider operating range. This enables lower-end torque capability for improved launch and drivability while making the engine fuel efficient. When fitted to a 4x2 model, the 2.2-litre engine consumes as little as 8.3 L/100 km in a combined cycle.

For the first time, selected Ranger diesel models will be available with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission to provide reduced engine rpm and extend its range on long highway trips or in city traffic.