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  #1  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:03 PM
Bobb Bobb is offline
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Default Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

Greetings Everyone!

I have never owned a truck of any sort, but now I find myself actively looking for a pre-owned Ford Ranger. I really want a compact pickup truck, and the Ranger is my vehicle of choice. I'm looking for something between 2000 - 2008 or so, depending upon price. I see a LOT of pre-owned Rangers for sale all over the place, and the prices sure seem to be reasonable.

So.....Here are some general questions I have about looking for a Ranger:

- Are there any model years after 2000 that I should try to avoid or watch for issues?

- Are there any particular weak points I should watch for in any given model year/engine/chassis? For example, some vehicles I've owned were know for having bad ball joints or motor mounts in certain years, so when buying them used, I look to see if they've been replaced with better components.

- I see some models with sort of an "egg crate" grille, while others have a grille with "bars." I like the "egg crate" grille much better. Is that a feature of a particular trim level?

- Are the 4-cylinder engines OK? I will NOT be doing much heavy-hauling, and I might be using the truck on a somewhat daily basis as general transportation, so the more fuel-efficient powerplant might be OK for me.

- What about towing? The only thing I might consider is getting a tow dolly for towing my sports cars. Of course, a V6 will be the preferred engine choice if I do that.

- What about gas mileage, 4 versus 6-cylinder? Would I really be getting that much better gas mileage with a 4 instead of a 6? If the difference isn't all that great, I'd just as soon find a six.

- What are the bed options that have been offered? I see several, including step-sides. I would imagine the step-side beds have less capacity...correct? I imagine Xtra-Cabs have smaller beds....or did they fit long beds onto Xtra-cabs as well?


I own two Ford Focus SVTs, along with several other Italian sports cars. I also do a lot of work for Lincoln and Ford all over the USA at major auto shows. I maintain and modify my sports cars, and have built a few race cars as well, so I intend to maintain a Ranger mostly on my own.

ANY ADVICE WOULD BE APPRECIATED! I'm a member of the "Focus Fanatics" Forum, and I look forward to getting a Ranger and hanging out here as well!
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2000 Ford Ranger XLT: Stepside Bed, Xtra Cab, 3-liter w/Auto, Tremor Audio Package - Chrome Yellow/Gray
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  #2  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:13 PM
Jimmeh Jimmeh is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

I don't know much about those model years, but I do know that there is a large difference in gas mileage between the 4 and the 6 cylinder engines. I've heard claims of 30 MPG's from the 4 cylinder and I myself have never seen anything better then 20 out of my old ass V6 Ranger, and know a lot of people have complained on here about getting 18 or less out of theirs.

You can only have the 6 foot bed on the extra cabs, but you can have the 6 foot or 7 foot on the regular cabs.

That's about all I know. Welcome!
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  #3  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:22 PM
pooleo pooleo is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

Trucks are pretty solid from 93. Nothing has really changed since then. I was a little concerned when I learned the frame on my '01 is a two piece. My 97 was a one piece frame. I would have concerns with that being a weak point. But have never heard/seen anything regarding that.

Engine wise, I think you should grab a 4.0. Fuel mileage is ok, usually around 16-20. If you want to get a 4 banger for mileage, stick with a reg cab short box 2wd for car like fuel economy.

The honey comb grill is 01-03 I believe. 98+ started IFS suspension, a comfort upgrade from the TTB style
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  #4  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:25 PM
DiabloBlanco DiabloBlanco is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

- Are there any model years after 2000 that I should try to avoid or watch for issues?

No

- Are there any particular weak points I should watch for in any given model year/engine/chassis? For example, some vehicles I've owned were know for having bad ball joints or motor mounts in certain years, so when buying them used, I look to see if they've been replaced with better components.

No

- I see some models with sort of an "egg crate" grille, while others have a grille with "bars." I like the "egg crate" grille much better. Is that a feature of a particular trim level?

check this http://www.fordrangerforum.com/exter...98-2000-a.html

- Are the 4-cylinder engines OK? I will NOT be doing much heavy-hauling, and I might be using the truck on a somewhat daily basis as general transportation, so the more fuel-efficient powerplant might be OK for me.

Yes its a solid motor that will last forever if you take good care of it

- What about towing? The only thing I might consider is getting a tow dolly for towing my sports cars. Of course, a V6 will be the preferred engine choice if I do that.

Towing is fine, with a Class III hitch.

- What about gas mileage, 4 versus 6-cylinder? Would I really be getting that much better gas mileage with a 4 instead of a 6? If the difference isn't all that great, I'd just as soon find a six.

They get about the same. 4cyl gets a little better

- What are the bed options that have been offered? I see several, including step-sides. I would imagine the step-side beds have less capacity...correct? I imagine Xtra-Cabs have smaller beds....or did they fit long beds onto Xtra-cabs as well?

Yes step sides have a narrow bed. they all run 6ft beds.
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  #5  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:44 PM
toyoracing toyoracing is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

The only real problem I believe you should watch for is check the transmission out. The automatic 5 speed attached to the 3.0L had a problem with destroying it's torque converter from what I've heard. I myself have owned only 2 Rangers in my life, the one I own now is the most current and it's a 2001 Ford Ranger XL 2-door with the 3.0L automatic transmission. But as far as the transmission problem goes I havn't heard anyone that I know of really say anything bad, and the only people I've heard complain about the transmissions have been on the internet, and typically you can't expect every Joe Blow to be honest since most people whom complain about vehicle problems are often coencidentally the ones who don't take very good care of their trucks.

And gas mileage wise, the 3.0 isn't really all that great. I was using regular 5W20 motor oil in my engine for every oil change since I've owned it, and have managed at best to get 17.3MPG, but since then I have switched to synthetic and have been getting 24MPG at it's worse, but it's mostly been city driving so I imagine once I get a good road trip or two in and empty the tank, it'll be far better. The 4.0L is a great motor, it has power where you need it, decent gas mileage for it's size and is a dependable little thing. But over all, Rangers as a whole have been known for their dependability, which is why I got mine (outside of it being dirt cheap) instead of a Dodge Dakota or similar vehicle in it's class.

And I believe a Rangers max towing capacity is right around 5 to 6,000LBS which in my opinion is more than enough to suffice most people. My 2002 F150 was capable of 10,000LBS and I maybe all but once ever met that, typically (and I work construction and do road trips a lot) never towed anymore than 3,000LBS.
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  #6  
Old 04-06-2011, 05:34 PM
TerrenceStuart TerrenceStuart is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

welcome to FRF, Robert!
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  #7  
Old 04-06-2011, 05:37 PM
djfllmn djfllmn is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

im surprised nobody mentioned the timing chain tensioner problem on the 01-02.5 4.0 V6
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  #8  
Old 04-06-2011, 07:00 PM
STL STL is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

Welcome to FRF

Be sure to post questions in the correct section for a better response.
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  #9  
Old 04-07-2011, 02:41 PM
bugz1racing bugz1racing is offline
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Default Re: Ranger Wannabe Seeks Advice!

Welcome
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