Make / Model Search

News - Ford - Ranger

Ford patents multi-tailgate: report

Flexible-use tailgate design set to mimic that offered by GMC, RAM

25 Jan 2022

FORD MOTOR COMPANY appears set to release a new multi-tailgate design to counter competition from North American competitors GMC and RAM.


That’s according to a report published last week by US site CarBuzz, in which the site detailed patent application drawings to the United States Patent and Trademarks Office (USPTO).


The drawings appear to outline a significantly redesigned tailgate equipped with an individual smaller sectional door, built-in access steps, as well as a small built-in storage area.


Ford’s new tailgate design mimics those already featured on GMC and RAM pick-ups and CarBuzz suggests the upgrade may feature on Ford’s MY23 F-Series models – and possibly future versions of the Australian-engineered Ranger, which is due in local showrooms soon..


GMC offers its MultiPro and Multi-Flex tailgates on a range of pick-up lines. The six-way system offers a primary gate, smaller gate, raised or lowered combination gate, built-in load stop design, easy access- and wider 48-inch full-width steps, as well as an inner workbench-style platform.


The MultiPro tailgate is standard on several GMC pickup variants, including the Sierra 1500 and Sierra Heavy Duty, while the Multi-Flex version, which adds segment-exclusive electric up/down functionality, is available on all Chevrolet Silverado derivatives.


For RAM, a similarly designed system – known simply as the Multifunction Tailgate – is available optionally across various pick-up ranges, including the 1500. 


RAM was first to introduce the design back in 2019 and now offers remote release, 60:40 tailgate split functionality, and a centre-mounted step functions as part of the package. The Multifunction Tailgate is also the only system of its kind that may be used while a vehicle is towing.


The new multi-tailgate design won’t feature on the forthcoming Ranger, however. The fifth-gen utility model already features a significantly altered – and more practical – tailgate design…


The new Ranger’s easy-lift tailgate incorporates a one-metre rule and clamp pockets, allowing tradies to measure, grip and cut directly from the back of their ute. And while the tailgate does not incorporate a step, it’s important to note that the Ford already includes built-in side steps (set into the rear of the wheel cavity on each side of the tub) and an in-tub 12-Volt power outlet.


Ford Global Trucks enterprise product line management director Gary Boes said because the new Ranger would be used for a wider variety of purposes than the outgoing model, Ford’s designers have tried to ensure all bases are covered in terms of the ute’s practicality and versatility. 


“Our intent was not to simply create a good truck. We wanted to deliver an exceptional one that people would want to own – one that customers around the world could trust to tackle anything,” Mr Boes said.


“We’ve really packed a lot into the next-generation Ranger to inspire owners to do more of what they love to do, with features that encourage them to explore new horizons,” he added.


The fifth-gen Ranger features a wider cargo box that may be segmented to better manage cargo and loose items. The tray incorporates more tie-down points than before and features external tie-down rails to better manage load security. 


Furthermore, there are six structural attachment points within the protective load-box capping, which makes it easier to fit accessories such as a canopy, cross bars or a tent.


The load box is 50mm wider than before and can stow up to 1233 litres of cargo with the tonneau cover in place. It can accommodate a standard European pallet (1,200mm x 800mm) in the bed, while the load box length-runs from 1,544mm to 2,305mm (depending on the variant).


Inside the cabin, the new Ranger includes under-seat storage, retractable cup holders, several cubby holes and a fold-flat rear seat; under the bonnet, room is set aside for a second battery.


New zone lighting ensures the Ranger is easier to manoeuvre off the beaten track, and Ford has left ample space for ancillary switches on the centre stack (optional on Wildtrak variants).


The fifth-gen Ranger will be built at Ford’s manufacturing plants in Thailand and South Africa from 2022. Local specifications and pricing will be announced closer to launch.

Read more

Click to share

Click below to follow us on
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

Ford articles

Ranger pricing

Motor industry news

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.

Catch up on all of the latest industry news with this week's edition of GoAutoNews
Click here