The Ford Ranger Wildtrak is arguably the best-looking leisure double-cab ‘on sale in Thailand. This breed of bakkie (rear cargo load) is less of a traditional workhorse and more of a family adventure vehicle and as such, qualities such as good on and off-road performance, ride quality, comfort and safety are key for success.
We took our test drive Wildtrak on a recent trip south to visit PhraMahathatChediPhakdeePrakat at Baan Krut. Sure this was largely along the main highway south, not really a test of the four-wheel drive capacity, but we were able to take advantage of the powerful acceleration available to get past the numerous laboring trucks in safety and quickly. Another standout was the ability to glide over many rough surfaces (the road is currently undergoing a major revamp) without the bone-shaking ride that many smaller and less capable vehicles and travellers endure. The Wildtrak is one of the most attractive double-cab bakkies on the market with its imposing, macho styling. It exudes an
air of rugged sophistication. It’s as much a 4×4 as it is a fashion item and if capability and stand-out style are what you’re looking for in your bakkie, then the Wildtrak makes the strongest statement in that regard.
Performance and economy? Underneath that bulging bonnet lies a 5-cylinder 3.2-litre turbodiesel engine that produces peak outputs 147 kW (200 HorsePower) / 3,000 rpm and 470 Nm / 1750-2500 rpm and propels the Ranger via a 6-speed automatic transmission. An electronically controlled transfer case allows the driver to easily switch between 2H, 4H and 4L. An electronic rear differential ensures optimum traction in challenging terrain and possibly the best part of this Wildtrak is the ability for the driver to easily switch between 2H, 4H and 4L using a knob next to the transmission lever. The Wildtrak has a maximum towing capacity of 3500 kg.Ford claims 9.0 L/100km for the Wildtrak automatic although you may very well see higher figures than that in urban driving situations. With a large 80-litre fuel tank, the Wildtrak has a range of about 730 km.
Ride quality and driving experience? You may expect the ride quality of this vehicle style to be unsophisticated, but the Ranger Wildtrak bucks the trend. Rather than a bouncy and jumpy ride that plagues many, the Wildtrak is surprisingly smooth and wellmannered on the road. Considering the height of the Wildtrak, the driver is afforded a commanding view of the road with good allround visibility. Getting into or out of the Wildtrak can be tricky if you not careful, but running boards are fitted to assist/save shorter-legged drivers and occupants some embarrassment. Be mindful that the Wildtrak has a large turning circle and that can make parking and general manoeuvring cumbersome in busy urban areas however the Wildtrak is fitted with front and rear park distance control along with a rear view camera to make maneuvering more manageable.
The use of leather and colour gives the Wildtrak an upmarket feel. Buyers will be happy to know that perceived interior build quality is good. The leatherclad dashboard with orange contrasting stitching and similarly colourful detailing on the partial cloth/leather seats makes the cabin feel more vibrant and attractive. The Wildtrak is well equipped with safety and driver assistance features. A total of 7 airbags are standard, as well as ABS with EBD, traction control, stability control and hill descent control. With its comprehensive safety offering, the Wildtrak proves that bakkies can indeed be excellent family leisure vehicles.
More Innovative Technology Forward Collision Warning System It can even detect the potential for an accident to occur and alerts you with a brake light warning on your windscreen and pre-charges your brakes. Lane Keeping System Sometimes it can be easy to drift into the next lane without realising it. If your indicator isn’t on, the Lane Departure Warning alerts you by vibrating your steering wheel. If you continue to drift, it applies torque to the steering wheel to guide you back into your lane. Adaptive Cruise Control Forget about having to turn your cruise control on and off as traffic changes. Instead, the Ford Ranger adapts. If it senses slow moving traffic, it slows down. When the traffic clears, it goes back to your pre-set speed.
SYNC™2 Multi-tasking is a big part of any job. SYNC™2 lets you continue to work, while you drive, without having to take your hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road. Make and take calls, change your music, adjust your air conditioning, just by saying a few simple words. Conclusion: The attention-grabbing Ford Ranger Wildtrak is perfectly suited to a buyer who wants to make the boldest statement with their new double-cab purchase. The Wildtrak’s styling is attractive, particularly in Pride Orange and buyers will appreciate that the cabin looks and feels upmarket.
If you are searching for a capable family leisure bakkie with dashing good looks, then the Wildtrak should be on your hit list. Supplier: Ford JorCharoenPrachuabkirikhan : Ford Huahin 032-547 367-8 Ford MuangPrachuab 032-510 123 Price: (3.2 L VG Turbo 4×4 6ATWildTrak): 1,189,000 THB Footnote: When we pulled into the car park at Baan Krut, as out photo shows, we found a parking bay next to an almost identical Pride ‘Orange’ Wildtrak. Almost like a twin brother, but spot the difference!