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First look: Ford outs updated Ranger

Ford's facelifted Ranger makes its debut online with a new, yet familiar face

Ford logo27 Nov 2014

FORD has revealed the facelifted version of its Australian-developed Ranger utility via a video online, showing a front end that brings it into line with its mechanically related Everest SUV twin.

The sneak peek of Ford's workhorse hero shows that the redesign brings the headlights and bonnet of the Everest seven-seat off-roader, but the ute gains a more rugged and chunky version of its sibling's chrome three-bar grille.

Ford has tried to differentiate the Everest and Ranger by giving the latter a more truck-like grille with the three bars that do not run all the way to the grille surround, leaving a vertical space at the edges and in a nod to its F-Series pick-up stablemates.

On the updated Ranger, the grille continues further down into the bumper, while the Everest features softer lower air intake and fog-light styling than the ute.

GoAuto reported in June that the Ranger would adopt styling elements from the Everest when it was spied undergoing local testing.

The video appears to show that no changes have been made to the Ranger's sheet metal from the front doors to the tailgate, but it is likely that cabin changes will bring it closer into line with the Everest.

Aside from the teaser video, Ford is yet to release any powertrain or specification details on the updated Ranger, but Ford Australia brand communications associate Martin Gunsberg said it would go on sales in the second half of 2015.

This is similar timing to the Everest, but it is likely that Ford will split the launch to ensure maximum coverage for both models.

Mr Gunsberg said that Ford Australia led the development of the facelifted Ranger, with significant input from other global regions.

“This is a program that we lead from Australia,” he said. “The bulk of the work takes place here in Australia but we are very much part of One Ford, which means that we are always working with our global PD (product development) and design community and that happens across all our programs.” The 19 second video features underbody footage of the re-jigged Ranger being put through its paces, ending with the words smarter, safer, smoother and stronger on the screen.

Ford's workhorse is the second best-selling ute in Australia, with 22,539 sales to the end of October, which trails the top-selling Toyota HiLux which has shifted 31,876 units in the same period.

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GoAutoNews is Australia’s number one automotive industry journal covering the latest news, future and new model releases, market trends, industry personnel movements, and international events.