I think Ford interviewed the wrong people when they decided to quit making the Ranger. If you don't need a full size truck the Ranger gets the job done with little fuss and muss. I've put 225,000 miles on the truck and other than needing some basic maintenance it has been a good little truck and done everything I needed of a truck. For the price it was perfect, now if I stay with Ford I have to buy an F-150 that will be more expensive to drive and maintain. Part of me wants to see if I can get 500,000 miles out of this truck instead.
2003 Ford Ranger 4dr SuperCab Edge Plus 4WD Styleside SB (4.0L 6cyl 5A)
This truck is a tough and versatile little trooper. no matter what, i know i can rely on it for whatever i need. when buying one, make sure it runs and idles well. also make sure the ball joints and control arms are in good condition (if equipped). that alone can be the reason why people talk bad about them. I will admit the are a little expensive, but when it comes to some cars you get what you pay for. Overall i have had to do a few repairs here and there, but nothing you cant do at home. I will say it is the best 4x4 i have ever owned. BUT... if you want to make it an off road vehicle you may want to opt for an older one with a solid axle. The torsion bar suspension is the worst thing ive ever seen. i have a 3'' lift on mine and it has absolutely no flex on the front end.
2003 Ford Ranger 4dr SuperCab Tremor Plus Rwd Styleside SB (3.0L 6cyl 5A)
I've owned my 2003 4 door super cab tremor edition edge ranger since it was new. The truck rides like a Cadillac on the highway and it ain't so bad on a dirt road. I've owned S10s with the Vortec 4.3 litre V6 and I swear I don't see a lot of difference in my Rangers 3.0 power plant. The truck will pull a heavier load that the S10s ever thought of. The sport side is just plain sexy to look at and the alloy wheels that came on the truck are good enough that I've never thought about custom wheels for this truck. It hauls what I need it to in the back bed including all my camping gear and 4 Wheeler. I've pulled heavy loads up hills through crappy roads ect and it does a wonderful job. I just rolled 202,000 on the odometer and the only thing I've done to this truck is change the oil, plugs and wires and air filters. It's a little beast of a truck and if you take care of it it'll take care of you. I live in Georgia and I wouldn't be afraid to fire her up and drive to Vegas because I know she will get me home. The only complaint I have is the jump seats in the back. Forget hauling 4 grown ups in the cab but two adults ride in comfort. I!m 6'3" and it fits me well. I highly recommend this truck as a definite buy if you find a good used one. They last forever.
I got this truck for my 18th birthday/ graduation gift. i love it i drove a 95 s10 for a year befor loved the s10 but the ranger has more power. the only thing i miss is towing we have 2 seadoos together they are about 2300 lbs full of gas the truck pulles them good but not fun going up the boat ramp. only thing i wish is that is was the x cab im 5.10 and my head hits the roof and the seat rubs the back window. 5 speed trans could shift better. i get about 21mpgs doing 80 no ac with ac i get like 18 i miss the 20 gallon tank the s10 had. i have put mine through hell and just keeps going change the oil every 3500 miles only problem i had is the thermostat ($150) other then that fine.
easy to reach everything on the dash
never let me down
I am on my second Ranger now. 2003 Ford Ranger Edge 4.0L V6 manual. my old one was a 2003 Ford Ranger XLT Automatic with a 3.0L V6. Neither of them have ever have any problems.
I would recommend a Ranger to anyone unsure of what small size pick up they should get. Alot of room in the cab, a good bit of room in the bed.
Engine and Tranny on these trucks will last forever. I know some to get over 600K miles. I will always drive my Ranger anywhere and trust it to go wherever I want it to. Completely worth the money. Maintain these trucks and drive them for many many years to come, without ever taking them to the shop.
The outside design on the trucks is just fun to look at. 6 disk CD changer makes it easy to change CD's without every looking off the road. You can load a decent amount in the bed of the truck, and it won't even strain going up steep hills or mountains.
The inside design hasen't changed at all from 1996 to 2005. In 2006 to 2011, the only thing changed was the steering wheel and speedometer. If they ever start making them in the US again, I hope that changes. Still a good design overall.