In December 2011, Ford ended production of its Ranger, arguably America’s lost truly compact pickup truck offering.
Over the last year and change however, the American automaker has been working on figuring out a viable compact truck for the market, essentially a new Ranger or F-100 that could be approved for production. But it’s not so simple as just taking its F-150 pickup and downsizing it and making it more affordable.
As each new generation of pickup trucks enters the market, they’re more powerful, capable of carrying more payload, and have a higher tow rating – essentially, the trucks continue to expand and get bigger. Ford however, believes that there’s certainly a market still for compact pickup owners that look for size, price, and fuel economy at the sacrifice of payload capacity and tow rating.
So what does Ford believes it has to do? Essentially consumers are looking for a 1,000 pound payload capacity and a 3,000 tow rating. Combine those attributes with lowered fuel consumption, and they may even look past the fact that it’s a car-based pickup, so long as its durable.
And then of course there’s price, which is the bigger issue if Ford was to move forward with an F-100. Currently, the F-150 starts at $24,500 and if an F-100 was priced competitively close to that, shoppers would naturally opt for the larger of the two pickups.
Nothing is definite yet for Ford in terms of a compact pickup, but the American automaker is working on it and admits that it’ll be a challenge.
[Source: Car and Driver]
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