Last spring, Ford Authority reported on rumors that the next-generation Ford Ranger would be available as a plug-in hybrid, pairing an electric motor with Ford’s 2.3L EcoBoost I-4 gasoline engine to produce a combined 270 kW (362 horsepower) and 680 Nm (501 pound-feet) of torque. Ford of Australia then confirmed the move this past February, though it didn’t share any additional details. Now, a plug-in Ford Ranger of some sort has also been confirmed by Hans Schep, Ford’s European head of commercial vehicles, in an interview with Automotive News.
Schep noted that Ford will launch the plug-in Ford Ranger at some point before 2025, but would not say if the pickup would be a plug-in hybrid or fully electric vehicle. Though prior rumors centered around a PHEV model, it’s possible Ford will instead pursue a BEV drivetrain for its mid-size pickup in Europe as some experts have said that plug-in hybrids are not as environmentally friendly as previously thought, and tougher European emissions rules may render them obsolete in the region sooner than expected, as Ford Authority recently reported.
Regardless, Ford will develop the next-gen Ranger alongside Volkswagen’s next-gen Amarok pickup, which will be produced at the Ford Silverton Assembly Plant in South Africa. Ford recently invested $686 million in that facility to bump production from 168,000 to 200,000 units annually amid strong sales and to prepare the plant to produce the all-new 2023 Ford Ranger.
In recent months, Ford Authority has spied a number of 2023 Ranger prototypes out driving around, including the next-gen Ranger Tremor and Ranger Raptor, which we confirmed will come equipped with a rear coil spring suspension and be sold in North America for the first time. As Ford Authority exclusively reported recently, the next-gen Ranger Raptor will be powered by Ford’s 3.0L EcoBoost V6, which will be mated to the automaker’s 10-speed automatic transmission.
The next-gen Ranger is expected to launch in 2022 for the 2023 model year, and will reportedly continue to ride on the Ford T6 platform, like the current model and the 2021 Ford Bronco, albeit with some modifications.