Ford Ranger Tremor
For the better part of the last decade, Ford only had one pickup in its lineup, the legendary full-size F-150. They brought back the Ranger three years ago as a midsize pickup truck, then added an off-road version called Tremor last year. Ford called the Tremor the most rugged version ever offered on this truck. Let's see if it lives up to its title! The Ranger Tremor has an MSRP of $53,498 and is manufactured in Wayne, MI.
Exterior-wise, the main difference between a regular Lariat Ranger and a Tremor is the 32-inch Continental all-terrain tires mounted on massive 17-inch wheels. Ford also added step hoops to help climb inside the truck. They lifted the suspension by 0.8-inch to increase ground clearance; thus, the Ranger is even more competent off-pavement. The grille on the Tremor package is black with red accents on the sides to make it stand out and adds Tremor stickers on each side of the bed in the back. The Ranger Tremor is a cool-looking off-road truck that deserves credit for making this segment even more competitive.
Inside the Ford Ranger's cabin, the main difference between the regular trim and the Tremor is the embroidering on the seats. The driver's side shows signs of age; this model was first unveiled in other markets as far as 2011 and hasn't seen major design updates. There isn't a digital gauge cluster such as the one found on the new F-150; you will have the previous one with a large speedometer in the middle flanked by two smaller screens. The left screen indicates key components such as a trip computer or a digital tachometer; the right indicates information about the media, phone, or navigation. There is just enough information provided to the driver, but it lacks a bit of refinement for a 2021 model. The steering wheel is nice and firm in your hands; the buttons are well-laid out and easy to use.
The SYNC infotainment system worked great and is super user-friendly. Ford added buttons for the climate controls and basic buttons for the media, which is a great advantage for the Ranger. On top of the screen, you will find 6 buttons marked AUX 1 to 6 to help you manage the accessories you might add to this Ranger Tremor. You will be quickly able to turn on or off a light bar. Under the climate controls, you will find a couple of buttons with various functions, such as the rear lock differential and Trail Control, to name a few. Next to them, you will find the knob to switch between rear-wheel drive (to improve fuel efficiency) to four-wheel drive (when the road conditions aren't ideal) and a button in the middle "TM" for the Terrain Management System if you're in mud or on rocks. Of course, there's also the gear lever and, a feature that is slowly disappearing, a manual handbrake. Overall, nothing fancy but enough features to please the most hardcore off-road fanatics.
The front seats are pretty comfortable while still offering decent side support when you try to push the pickup to its limits. Car seats could be improved, the ISOFIX ports aren't clearly marked, and the rear anchors are difficult to reach because you have to lower the back seats to see and attach them. Speaking of the rear seat, they offer decent legroom and headroom in the SuperCrew cab, such as our test model. This results in a smaller 5 feet bed.
Driving-wise, all Ranger models are powered by the same 2.3L Ecoboost 4-cylinder engine found on many other models of the Dearborn, MI manufacturer. This engine is coupled with a 10-speed automatic transmission and produces 270hp and 310lb-ft of torque and a four-wheel drive. The Tremor package adds a lot of goodies to be off-road ready right off the dealer lot. This pickup comes with 32-inch all-terrain tires, the FOX off-road suspension, front skid plates, and higher ground clearance. Our only complaint would be that the stiffness of the suspension gives a wobbly feel. Besides this, it felt like a truly competent vehicle off the pavement; you won't be afraid to be stuck for too long.
On the pavement, the Ford Ranger feels pretty much like a pickup truck. You are sitting pretty high above the road; you don't feel the bumps as much as you would in other cars; there is some body roll when you're turning at high speeds, all of which are not particularly uncomfortable in this vehicle. Parking this truck is pretty smooth; the steering wheel is agile at a lower speed. Power is available at all speeds, and the transmission quickly downshifts to deliver the best output. A quick word on towing, this midsize pickup truck can tow up to 7,500lbs and has a maximum payload of 1,430lbs. Fuel economy is average for an off-road pickup truck with a small engine: you will be around 12.3L/100km combined city and highway, which isn't so bad for this amount of fun.
The Ford Ranger Tremor is a great off-road midsize pickup with a reasonable price tag of just over $53000. It isn't the largest Ford F-150, but you still get numerous features for the price. Since writing, the new generation has been launched, and we can't wait to see if it makes as good an impression as the 2021 model.
Ford has lent us this vehicle one week as a press vehicle. We have no affiliation with Ford Canada. The above is a recollection of our personal opinion of the car referred above.