A fun two days with the Ford Ranger WildTrak in the South
Last week, we were invited by Ford Philippines to go on a “Southern Adventure”. The two-day road trip involved us trying out the Ford Ranger through zigzag roads, steep inclines, rough tracks, and highway driving. In my case, I tried out the Ford Ranger WildTrak 4×2 in automatic.
While it was my first time ever to drive an automatic for a long drive (I have been driving cars with a manual transmission since I started driving back in college), it did not take me that long to get adjusted to the Ranger WildTrak’s transmission. Thankfully, it is equipped with a Sport mode (which basically turns it into manual by letting you decide when to shift gears), and it really helped me in manning the car throughout the whole trip.
As someone who has been driving pickup trucks and SUVs for a decade, my experience with the Ford Ranger Wildtrak is memorable. Here are the things I like about it:
It has a finely-tuned suspension
Having driven pickups, AUVs, and SUVs for over a decade, the Ranger WildTrak has one of the better suspensions for its class. Whether I was dealing with potholes or rough roads, or when I needed to make quick steering movements (long drives can be crazy sometimes), the Ranger WildTrak’s suspension responded nicely, ensuring that me and my two companions were comfortable throughout the whole road trip.
The automatic gearbox has a smooth manual shifting mode
One of the reasons why I am not a fan of automatic is that its accuracy in changing gears is not perfect. There are times where it makes a wrong shift during an incline, and there are times that it takes a while before it changes to a higher gear. With the Ford Ranger, its Sport mode proved to be very useful to me during the whole trip.
What I like about the Ranger’s manual mode is that changing gears is so smooth, you would not feel a thing or two when you change gears. On top of that, its manual mode is smart enough to remind you when you need to shift down and when you need to shift up.
Handling rough and rocky roads is a breeze
While we drove a 4×2 version of the Ranger WildTrak, you can actually go off-roading with it, as it has large tires and a high ground clearance in dealing with rocks, potholes, and the like. Don’t underestimate the engine either: Even if it uses a 2.2L Duratorq Diesel engine (the 4×4 variants have the 3.2L Diesel engine instead), it’s power output is just what we needed as we deal with steep climbs and rough paths, along with overtaking jeeps, buses, and motorcycles along the way.
Here’s a quick video of how the Ranger dealt with the rough roads from Laiya to Malabrigo:
It has one of the best sound systems on a pickup
Whether it was Ariana Grande or Metallica I was listening to (yes, I have a broad taste when it comes to music), the Ranger WildTrak has one of the best sound systems I have experienced on a light truck. The soundstage is finely tuned, and you will appreciate every detail of a song, especially when you are dealing with 320kbps MP3 files.
Not to mention, Ford’s SYNC 3.0 audio system lets you connect your iOS and Android devices seamlessly, whether via Bluetooth or via one of the two USB ports found in the Ranger WildTrak’s dashboard.
Seats are comfortable even for long drives
With the Ranger WildTrak, you get well-padded premium leather seats with WildTrak detailing. While the seats offer a plethora of adjustments (it has a 4-way adjustment for the driver’s seat), I did not need to use them, as the seats were comfortable enough for the long drive, regardless if I was the driver or the passenger.
So if you would ask me, the Ranger WildTrak is a recommended buy even with its 4×2 variant. Priced at Php 1,489,000, it is a good deal given the features and amenities it has, along with its overall performance for long drives.
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