2007 Ford Ranger Review
The Ranger offers a traditional rugged ride and good off-road capability on a budget, but can't match the refined performance, interior quality or safety features of others in its class.
Reviewers generally agree that the 2007 Ford Ranger is useful for off-roading and light hauling or towing, but offers a ride that feels too truck-like and stiff to appeal to many modern buyers. The 2007 model, a carryover from a 1998 redesign and 2006 refresh, represents the fourth generation of the aging truck, which debuted in 1983.
Automobile Magazine concludes, "When driven after any newer offering, it quickly becomes obvious that the Ranger dates back to a time before pickups migrated toward the mainstream; today, buyers are looking for more carlike handling, comfortable ride, four full-size doors, and quiet engines. The Ranger offers none of these attributes." In addition, many auto writers feel it's too small to carry more than two comfortably, and even with three engine choices, the lack of an available V8 undermines towing capacity.
Despite its shortcomings, the Ranger is consistently described as a bargain because of its very affordable cost, which Kelley Blue Book simply refers to as "rock-bottom pricing." Consumer Guide concedes that while newer rivals "offer better power, refinement, even room and comfort," the Ranger is still "attractively priced and often heavily discounted." But the warns buyers it's easy to stray from that attractive base price: "Granted, you can load one of these Rangers up with an extended cab, four-wheel drive, fancy exterior trim, carpeting, automatic transmission, V-6 engine and other amenities and come away with a really fancy compact truck with a price tag to match."
Pricing may be alluring, but in projected resale value the Ford Ranger is far from the top of its class. Kelley Blue Book expects the Ranger "to retain a slightly above-average resale value." Over a five-year period, Kelley Blue Book projects the Ranger to hold its value better than the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, but says it lags behind the Dodge Dakota and far behind the Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier. IntelliChoice gives the base model a value rating of "poor" (the lowest possible) for its predicted five-year total cost of ownership, compared with others in its class. However, it also lists the Ranger as a Best in Class winner in several categories, including Lowest Fuel Costs, Lowest Operating Costs and SmartChoice Ownership Costs.
The Ranger comes in six trims -- XL, STX, XLT, Sport, FX4 Off-Road and FX4 Level II -- with a choice of three engines, two cab sizes (Regular Cab and Super Cab) and two bed sizes.