Over the past several months, Ford Authority spies have spotted a number of 2023 Ford Ranger prototypes, while Ford itself has also released multiple teaser videos of the redesigned mid-size pickup. Last month, we got our very first look at the 2023 Ranger’s front end design, which blends styling elements from the 2022 Ford Maverick and 2021 Ford F-150 before Ford Authority spies captured a prototype that revealed its front grille for the first time. Now, the next-generation Ford Ranger has finally been revealed, or at least, the international market model. Regardless, the North American version will feature the same styling, albeit different powertrains and features.
Development of the next-generation Ford Ranger was led by Ford Australia, which worked hand-in-hand with engineers and designers from around the globe. That team leaned on customer input to help shape the look of the new mid-size pickup, however, conducting dozens of workshops and interviewing over 5,000 customers during the development process. The result is a pickup that is far edgier than the current-gen Ranger, with design elements borrowed from the rest of the Blue Oval truck lineup, as expected. Additionally, for the very first time, the 2023 Ranger will offer Matrix LED headlights and integrated side steps, while XLT, Sport, and Wildtrak trims were all featured during the unveiling.
The new Ranger rides on an updated version of the Ford T6 Platform, which the pickup shares with the Ford Bronco. The next-gen Ranger’s wheelbase has been lengthened and widened by 50mm, which improves approach angle and off-road articulation and adds usable bed space. The rear dampers were moved outside the frame rails for improved ride quality both on- and off-road, and customers will be able to choose between two four-wheel drive systems, an electronic shift-on-the-fly system, or an advanced full-time 4×4 system at launch.
Underneath, a hydro-formed front-end structure has been added that increases airflow and makes room for a new powerplant, as well as what Ford calls “other propulsion technologies,” which will likely include a plug-in hybrid and possibly an all-electric powertrain at some point in the future.
For now, the international market Ford Ranger will be available with three turbodiesel engine options at launch, depending on the market. That includes Ford’s 3.0L Power Stroke V6, along with single turbo (in two different performance levels) and twin-turbo versions of the automaker’s 2.0L inline four-cylinder diesels. The next-gen Ranger will also continue to be available with Ford’s 2.3L EcoBoost I-4 that is the only engine choice in the current-gen North American version. Transmission options include six-speed manual, six-speed automatic, and 10-speed automatic gearboxes.
Inside the cabin, the Ford Ranger gains either a standard 10.1-inch or optional 12-inch infotainment screen, SYNC 4, and a digital instrument cluster. Many of the pickup’s physical controls have been moved to the central touchscreen, including drive modes, while the screen also displays a 360-degree camera view around the truck. Like the Ford F-150, 2023 Ranger owners can control the truck’s exterior zone lighting via the FordPass app, while an embedded modem provides connectivity on the go.
Ranger engineers placed a big emphasis on creating usable space in the new pickup, which features extra cargo tie-down points mounted on steel tube rails, load box caps, tailgate attachment points, and a new cargo management system with dividers that’s designed to hold a wide variety of items. Like the F-150, the Ranger’s tailgate also doubles as a work area with an integrated ruler and clamp pockets.
As Ford Authority exclusively reported, the next-generation Ford Ranger will represent the first of an eight-year production run. The upcoming Ranger – assigned the P703 designation internally – will enter production in Thailand and South Africa in 2022, and at the Ford Michigan Assembly Plant in the spring of 2023.