The Ford Ranger hardly wants an introduction – it’s Australia’s favorite ute in 2023.
At CarExpert we’ve lined the launch of the new-generation Ranger in loads of element, given it’s been some of the anticipated new car launches of the previous 12 months and stays one in every of Australia’s hottest automobiles.
However now it’s time to filter by way of as many variations and variants to seek out which one is the decide of the vary.
We’ve reviewed the high-spec trims – i.e. the Sport, Wildtrak and XLT in addition to the twin-turbo V6 Raptor – so right here we’re wanting somewhat additional down. In truth, one up from the bottom degree.
Is the 2023 Ford Ranger XLS 4×4 Double Cab Choose-up as succesful as its higher-spec siblings?
On check we’ve the Ranger XLS 4×4 Double Cab Choose-up, which lists for $54,730 earlier than on-road prices after a latest worth bump.
You may get a 4×2 model in the identical Excessive-Rider Double Cab physique model for practically $8000 much less, at $46,730 earlier than on-roads.
The XLS is one step above the XL within the Ranger household tree, and is completely accessible with the two.0-litre Bi-Turbo four-cylinder diesel engine.
For a full rundown of the 2023 Ford Ranger line-up and the variations between variants, take a look at our pricing and specs article right here.
2023 Ford Ranger XLS pricing:
- 4×2 dual-cab pickup, 2.0 Bi-Turbo diesel, 10AT: $47,130 (+$400)
- 4×4 dual-cab pickup, 2.0 Bi-Turbo diesel, 10AT: $54,730 (+$400)
Costs exclude on-road prices
Being an entry-level business car, I used to be anticipating facets like the fabric seat trim and urethane plastic steering wheel – however even nonetheless, the Ranger XLS feels extra upmarket than most rivals.
Ford must be counseled for becoming its full infotainment suite from the bottom degree – the portrait 10.1-inch Sync 4 system is definitely the benchmark, and received’t be challenged till Volkswagen releases its model of the identical show within the upcoming new Amarok.
Extra on the touchscreen in a bit, however there’s additionally an 8.0-inch digital instrument cluster as customary. It’s fairly primary in kind and performance, but it surely’s spectacular Ford has a completely digital interface up entrance even from the bottom degree.
Consolation up entrance is up there with the category leaders too, with a variety of adjustment within the driver’s seat and steering wheel. The Ranger will get attain and rake adjustment for the tiller, one thing that a variety of rivals nonetheless don’t provide.
Materials high quality within the XLS isn’t fairly as plush as you’ll discover greater up within the vary, however whereas the majority of surfaces are tougher plastic, every part feels fairly sturdy and the construct feels tightly screwed collectively.
The entrance seats are primary and never tremendous bolstered, however they’re snug and trimmed in a hard-wearing material that feels prefer it’s made to deal with the tradie life.
The big selection of adjustment, as talked about earlier, is a win and consistent with the Ranger’s SUV-like really feel. It’s mainly an Everest with a tray, in spite of everything.
Ergonomically it’s fairly sound, with properly laid-out, chunky controls on the steering wheel, and stuff just like the portrait-oriented touchscreen and local weather controls are all inside simple attain. It’s only a disgrace the steering wheel has a naked urethane rim and isn’t wrapped in leather-based or leatherette.
A key spotlight of the Ranger cabin is the infotainment and the show tech, headlined by the ten.1-inch portrait-oriented touchscreen in decrease grades working Ford’s newest Sync 4 working system.
Geared up as customary with wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, in addition to FordPass Join with embedded modem, our check automotive’s optionally available Tech Pack ($750) provides a slew of things together with embedded satellite tv for pc navigation, DAB+ digital radio, dual-zone local weather management with second-row vents, in addition to keyless entry and begin.
It’s a small worth to pay for the total expertise suite – ticking this field is a no brainer for us.
Whereas on-paper specs can typically translate to underwhelming operation within the real-world use, the Ranger’s infotainment unit – notably with the choice pack – is a benchmark.
We think about the strongest competitors coming within the close to future is be the brand new Amarok, which by the way is similar automotive beneath and can base its infotainment tech off the Ranger’s – should you can’t beat ’em, be part of ’em… proper?
There’s a superb quantity of storage up entrance, too.
Huge cubbies and cabinets reside forward of the shifter for keys, telephones, wallets – although there’s no wi-fi telephone charger right here – and the cupholders between the entrance seats shall be greater than sufficient to deal with your Maccas latté at 5:30 within the morning.
The door bins are deep for bigger bottles too, and the cubby beneath the front-centre armrest is likewise fairly deep and accommodating.
General it’s fairly good relative to its friends, proving workmanlike utes don’t have to return at the price of refinement.
The second row hasn’t fairly obtained the identical quantity of ‘wow’ issue (not that we had been anticipating it to), however just like the entrance covers all of the fundamentals and them some to lend an SUV or passenger-car like expertise for these within the again.
Leg- and headroom are good for the category, although the center seat could be too skinny should you’re desirous to go five-up. The rear air vents included as a part of the Tech Pack are welcome, as are the 12V energy socket and map pocket behind the entrance passenger seat.
In case your workhorse doubles up as a household runaround, there are ISOFIX anchors on the window seats and top-tether factors throughout all three rear pews.
The seats additionally fold ahead and the seat bases up, the latter revealing under-seat storage if you wish to disguise issues away from prying eyes.
Twin-cab Ranger variants have a wider tub than earlier than, enough to flat-stow a 1200mm x 800mm pallet. It’s additionally less complicated to entry, with sturdy field steps fitted simply behind the rear tyres.
The counterbalanced tailgate – with mounting factors for vices and even a pre-drawn ruler – is tremendous gentle to function.
There are six tie-down hoops within the mattress, and the field sides have attachment factors for canopies. The spray-in mattress liner seen here’s a $400 choice, and feels sturdier than the usual tub while additionally wanting extra rugged.
Ranger XLS fashions are powered completely by a 2.0-litre Bi-Turbo four-cylinder diesel, mated to a 10-speed automated transmission as customary. Rear-wheel drive is customary, with selectable 4×4 commanding a $7600 premium.
Outputs are quoted at 154kW (3750rpm) and 500Nm (1750-2000rpm), 3kW down on the outgoing era however the identical quantity of torque.
Ford claims mixed gas financial system of 7.6L per 100km, giving a theoretical driving vary of over 1000 kilometres from the Ranger’s 80-litre gas tank. CO2 emissions, in the meantime, are quoted at 201g/km.
In contrast to the V6 diesel accessible additional up within the vary, the Bi-Turbo model of the Ford Ranger doesn’t have idle cease/begin. Australian fashions are additionally Euro 5-certified, that means there’s a diesel particulate filter (DPF) however no AdBlue.
The Ranger XLS 4×4 Double Cab Choose-up quotes a kerb weight of 2272kg, with a payload of 958kg. GVM and GCM are rated at 3230kg and 6350kg respectively, whereas towing capability is a most 3500kg when fitted with the optionally available tow bar and trailer brake controller.
I’ve by no means been keen on driving lower-grade utes – utes normally for that matter – however the Ranger XLS breaks the mould.
We’ve praised varied Ranger fashions prior to now for his or her SUV-like driving expertise, and this trait is mirrored on the decrease finish of the vary.
The two.0-litre Bi-Turbo diesel has a little bit of clatter on begin and at idle, but it surely’s in any other case a fairly refined unit with ample grunt to get this truck on top of things with out the loud, rattly soundtrack that’s nonetheless current in a spread of rivals.
Certain, it’s not fairly as easy as the three.0-litre V6 accessible additional up the vary, however even when the bent six has set a brand new benchmark for the section, Ford’s 2.0-litre Bi-Turbo stays a favorite amongst the four-cylinder set.
The ten-speed automated is much extra intuitive than the earlier era, with extra decisive shifts and an inclination to raised lean on the diesel engine’s 500Nm of torque reasonably than busily shuffling by way of ratios – which used to offer the impression the previous Ranger had extra ratios than it may deal with.
The easy acceleration makes peak-hour commutes in visitors a doddle, and identical goes for cruising on the freeway between work websites, or wherever you’re headed.
Ford has accomplished an important job making the Ranger snug and refined all spherical, with probably the greatest journey set ups within the section for all-round use, even when there’s a slight jar within the rear finish over tougher hits when unladen.
As talked about earlier, the Ranger actually comes near using and dealing with like an SUV. If something, the distinction in journey compliance because of the leaf-sprung rear finish is the important thing differentiating issue between the Ranger and its wagon-bodied Everest twin.
We didn’t load this specific Ranger up with weight within the rear finish, however earlier checks has previous us the rear finish settles a bit should you carry a few hundred kegs-worth of drugs within the again.
The place the previous Ranger felt a tad obscure by way of the steering wheel, the brand new one feels far more linked if nonetheless with a really gentle and assisted really feel for higher ease of use.
Regardless of its measurement (5370mm lengthy, 1918mm extensive), the Ranger is definitely fairly simple to position in automotive parks and tight streets, helped by a transparent reversing digital camera, massive facet mirrors and home windows, in addition to entrance and rear parking sensors.
It’s hefty dimensions and huge footprint do, nonetheless, give the ute a sure-footed stance on the highway even in adversarial climate situations.
Given Bi-Turbo variations of the Ranger get a selectable 4×4 system as a substitute of the full-time operation of V6 fashions with 4A mode, the XLS 4×4 hardly ever comes unstuck except you actually hoof it on a slippery or unfastened floor. However, it undoubtedly feels extra tied down than a number of different utes in 2H when driving the rear wheels solely.
In contrast to a number of utes on the decrease finish of their respective line-ups, the Ranger comes absolutely geared up with driver help programs that you just’d count on of a contemporary car.
Customary adaptive cruise management and lane-keep help are nice inclusions and work the identical as in every other Ford passenger automotive, whereas blind-spot help and rear cross-traffic alert are useful given the ute’s enormous size.
A transparent reversing digital camera, in addition to entrance and rear parking sensors are additionally very useful, and as talked about earlier make the brand new Ranger pretty simple to park all issues thought-about.
It’s a disgrace a 360-degree digital camera system isn’t included within the optionally available Tech Pack for XLS fashions, whereas cease/go performance for the adaptive cruise management and lane centring help are reserved for XLT variants and above.
Ranger XL highlights:
- 16-inch metal wheels
- 16-inch metal spare wheel
- All-season tyres
- Entrance disc, rear drum brakes
- Black grille
- Halogen headlights
- Halogen daytime working lights
- LED central high-mounted cease gentle
- Halogen tail lights (Cab-Chassis)
- LED tail lights (Choose-Up)
- Tailgate with elevate help (Choose-Up)
- Built-in tailgate step (Choose-Up)
- 8.0-inch digital instrument cluster
- 10.1-inch Sync 4 touchscreen infotainment system
- Wi-fi Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
- Embedded modem
- Distant begin by way of FordPass app
- Tilt, telescopic steering column
- Ebony material upholstery
- 8-way handbook driver seat
- 4-way handbook entrance passenger seat
- Vinyl flooring protecting
- Energy rear home windows (Double Cab)
- Single-zone local weather management
- Digital-locking rear differential (4×4)
- Standard gear selector
- Mechanical handbrake
Ranger XLS provides:
- 16-inch Darkish Sparkle Silver alloy wheels
- Black facet steps
- Halogen entrance fog lights
- Black grille with silver accents
- Carpet flooring
- Driver flooring mat
- 6-speaker sound system
- Entrance parking sensors
- Drive modes (4×4)
The Ford Ranger line-up (excluding Raptor) wears a five-star ANCAP security score with 2022 date stamp.
Class scores included 84 per cent for grownup occupant safety, 93 per cent for little one occupant safety, 74 per cent for susceptible highway consumer safety and 83 per cent for security help.
Automobiles constructed earlier than August 20 2022, nonetheless, will want a software program replace to their lane-keeping software program to reflect the specs of five-star automobiles. Ford says sellers will perform the replace at an proprietor’s subsequent service.
Customary security gear contains:
- 9 airbags
- incl. driver, passenger knee airbags
- incl. front-centre airbag
- Autonomous emergency braking (AEB)
- Automobile, Pedestrian, Bike owner detection
- Junction help
- Adaptive cruise management
- Blind-spot help
- Rear cross-traffic alert (Choose-up)
- Lane departure warning
- Lane preserve help
- Highway edge detection
- Reversing digital camera (Choose-up)
- Rear parking sensors (Choose-up)
- Trailer Protection (with optionally available Tow Pack)
Ranger XLT provides:
- Adaptive cruise management incl. cease/go
- Blind-spot monitoring incl. Trailer Protection
- Lane centring help
- Site visitors signal recognition
- Tyre stress monitoring
The Ranger line-up is roofed by Ford Australia’s five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee, bolstered by Ford Nationwide Roadside Help and Auto Membership Life-style membership for as much as seven years after buy.
Scheduled upkeep is required each 12 months or 15,000 kilometres – whichever comes first.
Ford presents capped-price servicing for as much as 4 years or 60,000km. The Ranger will value $329 per go to to service for the primary 4 visits. Bear in mind rivals just like the HiLux nonetheless require servicing each six months.
By way of real-world gas consumption, we noticed an indicated 10.2L/100km with blended driving together with each day commuting to and from the CarExpert Melbourne workplace in peak-hour visitors.
Fairly a bit up on Ford’s declare, and little question can be lowered if idle cease/begin was fitted to Australian fashions.
The Ranger XLS reveals off the very strong foundations beneath flashier high-spec variants.
In contrast to many different producers, Ford has accomplished a superb job at together with loads of the good things proper from the underside of the vary, that means you don’t must spend massive to get an important all-round dual-cab.
Sure, the XLS’s halogen lights, material seats and lack of sports activities bar are very Ranger ‘Primary’, however should you’re working with a strict $60,000 funds you’ll be able to have every part you want after which some – particularly with the Tech Pack optioned.
Whether or not you’re headed to the work web site or the college run, the Ranger XLS 4×4 is a snug, refined and well-featured dual-cab ute that betters similarly-priced rivals which are positioned on the greater finish of their line-ups each by way of on-road prowess but in addition the crucial areas of tech and security.
The Ranger is powered by probably the greatest four-cylinder diesel engines within the class, and isn’t laborious to drive day-to-day like some opponents nonetheless are. Plus, it’ll tow as much as 3500kg and may be very succesful off the crushed observe as we’ve came upon beforehand.
It’s the benchmark, easy as that.
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