Ford Ranger vs. Competitors: Comparing Midsize Pickup Trucks

Ford Ranger vs. Competitors: Comparing Midsize Pickup Trucks

After an eight-year hiatus, the Ford Ranger is back in the US with a bang! So, if you’re in the market for a pickup, you should compare midsize pickup trucks with the all-new 2023 Ford Ranger before deciding. The last time Americans heard of the name Ford Ranger was in 2011 and its return in 2018-2019 didn’t bring with it much.

For those who just heard about the return since it went silent in 2011, it may not immediately be evident how different the new Ford Ranger is. Also, not so many people know where the 2019 model fits in the midsize pickup truck market. Fret not though; we’re here to give you the good news through this Ford vs competitors post.   We’ll compare it to the current crop of midsize pickup trucks that give Ranger a run for its money.

What Does the New Ford Ranger Bring To The Table?

The 2023 Ford Ranger comes with a design suitable for work and play, available in various cab combinations, powertrain combinations, and trim levels. With so much to offer, this pickup truck has all the specifications to suit the needs of every truck shopper.

The new Ford Ranger comes emboldened by a contemporary, futuristic, and aggressive demeanor backed by advanced auto technologies. What’s most exciting is that lovers of this pickup truck get their beloved Ranger Raptor. The truck comes with four trim levels, namely XL, XLT, Lariat, and Raptor. All four models come in the traditional four-door crew cab style with 4WD and RWD. In the future, Ford is more likely to surprise us with EVs and hybrid models.

2023 Ford Ranger XL

The 2023 Ford Ranger XL is the entry-level of the Rangers, offering a solid pickup build powered by a 2.3 liter turbocharged I-4 EcoBoost engine. This engine delivers 270 hp with 310 lb.-ft torque. Despite bringing a choice of seven exterior color options, the interior has only one choice, Ebony. Technology-wise, the Ranger XL has pedestrian detection, a pre-collision assist with emergency auto braking, forward collision warning, post-collision braking, and lane-keeping aid.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT

2023 Ford Ranger XLT

Next in line is the 2023 Ford Ranger XLT, which offers a few more improvements. It has a powerful 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that gives off 315hp and 400lb-ft torque. With a choice of eight exterior colors, the XLT offers all the modern auto features of XL, plus a Blind Spot Information System.

2023 Ford Ranger Lariat

If you’re looking for a top-tier midsize pickup truck that’s an embodiment of luxury, comfort, and entertainment, the 2023 Ranger Lariat is a great pick. Although it’s powered by the same engine as the XLT, the Lariat offers a few more advances that set it apart. It comes with front parking sensors, rain-sensing wipers, a heated steering wheel, an Active Park Assist, and a 360-degree camera.

2023 Ford Ranger Raptor

The new Ranger Raptor is based on Lariat, but it’s a beast that beats most midsize pickup trucks. It runs on a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 EcoBoost engine. The all-powerful engine produces 405 hp and 430 lb.-ft torque. The pickup truck is a full-time 4WD and features electronic locking axles, long-travel off-road suspension, side steps, dual exhaust, and underbody skid plates. It offers all the amazing driver-assist technologies, plus a 20-gallon fuel tank rather than an 18-gallon like its siblings. You get to choose from nine exterior color options, but unfortunately, there’s only one interior theme – black.

This brief feature highlight doesn’t cover everything about what the 2023 Ford Ranger has to offer. But it gives you a good picture of the pickup truck performance-wise. Let’s look at Ford vs competitors to understand how the iconic Ranger compares to the competition.

Let’s Compare Midsize Pickup Trucks: Ford Ranger Vs. Competitors

Undoubtedly, the Ford Ranger has a broad range of outstanding competitors. While the Ranger went on a break, other trucks forged on. With the Ranger back in the market with excellent features, it has to fight for its place against other renowned names. This makes it a bit difficult to choose a midsize pickup that meets your needs and lifestyle. We’ll compare midsize pickup trucks against Ford Ranger to help you decide.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs. 2023 Toyota Tacoma SR5 V6 4X4

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs. 2023 Toyota Tacoma SR5 V6 4X4

Toyota Tacoma is a big name in the US and often, most midsize truck lovers compare it against other brands. When it comes to comparing trucks with the same trim level, Ford Ranger has a price advantage over Tacoma right from the beginning.

The Ranger XLT and Tacoma SR5 V6 are similar pickup trucks within the same price and performance bracket. The former comes with a 310 lb.-ft torque higher than Tacoma’s 265 lb.-ft. Apart from its excellent torque, the Ranger has a better fuel economy and a towing capacity of 7,500 lbs. against 6,400 lbs. of Tacoma.

One premium feature standardized in Ranger XLT is the remote start system, which is absent in Tacoma SR5. Ranger XLT also offers a Blind Spot Monitoring System coupled with a rear parking sensor to give drivers top-the-roof confidence when reverse parking. With the Tacoma SR5, you’ll have to dig a little deeper into your pocket to get similar features.

In terms of capability and comfort, again Ranger XLT takes the day. It comes with a more spacious legroom both in the rear and front seat rows. The wider and deeper pickup box in the Ford Ranger XLT, coupled with the 7,500 lbs. load capacity means you’ll be able to carry more weight.

To round up the reasons why the Ford Ranger XLT is a better choice compared to the Toyota Tacoma SR5, the former offers extra roadside assistance coverage for three years.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs. 2023 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab SV 4X4

Next in this post comparing midsize pickup trucks is the Ford Ranger XLT against the Nissan Frontier Crew Cab SV. When we look at these two midsize pickup trucks price-wise, they seem not to differ much. So, what will help make a choice here is the performance and features of each.

Comparing their torques, the Ranger XLT takes the lead at 310 lb.-ft against Frontier’s 281 lb.-ft. Other than that, Ranger also comes out as a winner in terms of fuel efficiency. The Ranger’s standard 10-speed auto transmission gives the driver a smoother and quicker response when compared to the Frontier’s 9-speed auto transmission.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs. 2023 Nissan Frontier Crew Cab SV 4X4

Everyone wouldn’t mind a comfier pickup truck interior without spending more. That’s what you get with the auto dual-zone climate control feature in Ranger XLT. It heightens the comfort with the standard remote start system that can pre-cool or pre-heat the cabin before you board. Nissan Frontier on the other hand has a manual single-zone air conditioning and doesn’t offer a remote start system. Ford Ranger XL takes the competition higher with its safety technology feature, the standard Ford Co-Pilot360. In the blind spot monitoring category, Nissan Frontier doesn’t come any closer.

Ranger XLT offers other excellent features such as intelligent brake assist, and rear parking sensors, all of which are either optional or unavailable in Frontier. It’s therefore okay to conclude that the Ford Ranger XLT comes out as a winner, despite having the same price as the Nissan Frontier Crew Cab SV.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs 2023 Chevrolet Colorado LT 4X4

Next, let’s compare midsize pickup trucks that fall under the same price tag: Ford Ranger XLT and Chevy Colorado LT. These pickup trucks perfectly balance each other in terms of work capability and everyday driving comfort. They were both redesigned recently, with Colorado being released in 2023 while Ranger puffing up for 2024.

Price-wise, Ranger XLT beats Colorado LT, but for a good reason as you’ll see shortly. While they’re both powered by a standard turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, Ranger comes out strong with a higher horsepower and 50 lb.-ft more torque than Colorado. In addition, Ranger offers a 10-speed auto transmission, giving the driver higher towing capacity. Colorado, on the other hand, has 8-speed auto transmission with a towing capacity of 3,500 lbs.

Going further in comparing midsize pickup trucks, Ranger XLT vs Colorado LT, we take a look at their standard features. The Ranger XLT packs reverse parking sensors, cruise control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and a blind spot monitoring system. If you want these features in Chevy Colorado LT, you’ll need to pay extra.

Other convenience features that you’ll find in Ranger XLT and not Colorado LT include power-folding exterior mirrors, a remote start system, and wireless smartphone charging. Ranger also offers a 110V household outlet, which you’ll need to cough some more money to get in Colorado. As you can see, when you finally pack up these features in Colorado LT, you shall have spent some extra bucks.

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs 2023 Honda Ridgeline Sport AWD

2023 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCrew 4X4 Vs 2023 Honda Ridgeline Sport AWD

Last on our Ford vs competitors review is the Ford Ranger XLT against the Honda Ridgeline. The latter has an SUV-based body, plus other features that hype up its price by up to $4,000. But does that mean Ridgeline Sport beats Ranger XLT? Let’s find out.

As you already know, Ranger XLT is a full-time 4X4 and is more capable than the AWD in Ridgeline Sport, if you want a high-performing pickup truck for off-road use. Ranger also has an excellent city drive combined with better fuel economy while also delivering a higher torque against Ridgeline’s 262 lb.-ft.

In terms of safety, the Ranger XLT takes the day with the standard Ford Co-Pilot360 technology. This equips this powerful midsize pickup truck with rear parking sensors and a blind spot monitoring system. In Ridgeline, blind spot monitoring is present in higher trims. Looking at the level of comfort in both pickup trucks, the Ford Ranger XLT offers greater legroom and headroom suitable for long journeys. Ranger XLT has a 41-inch front headroom and 43.1-inch front legroom against Ridgeline’s 40.1-inch and 40.9-inch respectively.

What’s more, Ford offers an additional 5-year roadside assistance coverage or 60,000 miles. In contrast, the Honda Ridgeline Sport offers 3-year coverage or 36,000 miles whichever clocks first. The Ford Ranger turns out as an all-around winner in terms of price, features, and performance.

Wrapping It Up

When looking for a budget-friendly truck that performs excellently in work and play, it’s good to compare midsize pickup trucks from different makers. Ford Ranger is an all-time-performing midsize pickup truck. Despite going out of production since 2011, the vehicle has come back with excellent features. It takes the day when compared to other midsize pickup trucks within its price and performance bracket. So, if you want a pickup truck with outstanding efficiency, comfort, performance, safety features, and versatility, you cannot go wrong with a Ford Ranger.

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