Ford expands Ranger line-up with WildTrak X

Ford is expanding its Ranger line-up with the off-road focused Wildtrak X, arriving in Australian showrooms in the second half of the year as a “go-anywhere” special edition. It will hit the dirt at $75,990 plus on-roads.

The Ranger Wildtrak X bridges the gap between the high-performance Raptor and the recreation-orientated Wildtrak, with greater off-road capability and smart features that support a passion for adventure. It maintains the 3500kg towing capacity.

Elevating the Wildtrak X’s on and off-road ability are core wheel and suspension improvements, with Bilstein position-sensitive dampers featuring end stop control valve technology.

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These allow for better fine-tuning and calibration, ensuring on-road comfort matches its off-road performance. With a monotube design and nitrogen-charged external reservoir, the Bilstein dampers have an increased tuning bandwidth for dual driving characteristics.

The Wildtrak X will be the first Ranger 2.0-litre bi-turbo diesel variant to feature the advanced full-time 4WD system too, instead of the part-time ‘shift on the fly’ 4×4 system.

The Ranger Wildtrak X’s suspension has been specifically tuned with touring and payload in mind, but without sacrificing comfort during unladen driving. Overlanding enthusiasts will benefit from the damper tuning, which deftly sidesteps the usual drawbacks of a ‘lift kit’.

Additionally, General Grabber AT3 all-terrain tyres are fitted as standard, with the 265/70 R17 rubber wrapped around new 17-inch alloy wheels. The combination of new suspension, wheel, and tyres results in a 30mm wider track width front and rear.

There’s also an additional 26mm of ground clearance when compared to the existing Wildtrak. The new model also helps out on the trail with two new off-road tools that have been engineered to tackle challenging terrain.

Trail turn assist helps negotiate tight bends on narrow tracks by applying the brake on the inside rear wheel, significantly reducing the turning radius. It’s designed to be used on loose surfaces at speeds under 19km/h.

It can be used in either 4H or 4L and the rear differential is unlocked. In certain circumstances, it can reduce the Wildtrak X’s turning circle radius by up to 25 per cent, providing significant benefits when navigating tricky off-road conditions.

Trail control – also seen in the Ranger Raptor – helps drivers maintain a constant low speed while off-road. The driver simply selects a set speed below 32 km/h and the vehicle will manage its acceleration and braking while the driver concentrates on steering.

infotainment
Inside the 2023 Ford Ranger Wildtrak X

Similar to the drive mode on Ranger Raptor, rock crawl has been designed to help customers traverse uneven, rocky terrain in a controlled manner. This drive requires low-range 4WD to be engaged and will automatically lock the rear diff for maximum traction.

Rock crawl mode will also automatically actuate a unique throttle and transmission calibration that is designed to help the driver traverse the terrain as smoothly as possible.

The Ranger Wildtrak X features Ford’s flexible rack system too, which consists of a sliding load rack that can be locked into five positions along the length of the load bed, and folding roof racks that store inside the rails when not in use.

The flexible load system can be operated by one person and doesn’t require any tools to set up or stow. Cyber Orange is being offered as an exclusive colour for the Wildtrak X special edition as well.

Externally, the Wildtrak X gets a new off-road grille design with LED headlamps and a Cyber Orange accent strip, a steel bash plate, cast aluminium side steps and model badges on the front doors and tailgate, and black Ford oval badges front and rear.

Distinctive Ranger lettering across the hood also features, and the grille surround, bumper H-bar, wheel lip mouldings, fender vents, mirror caps, door handles and rear bumper are all finished in Asphalt Black.

Ensuring drivers have the best possible vision during low-light conditions, the Wildtrak X builds on the Ranger’s Matrix LED headlamps with auxiliary LEDs, integrated into the unique front grille.

Inside, the Wildtrak X boasts new leather-accented seats, complete with embroidered logos, with Miko suede featuring on the seat backs, upper glovebox and all-weather front and rear floor mats.

Terra suede wraps the glovebox, instrument cluster hood, door trim and centre console rails while Cyber Orange contrast stitching is used on the seats, steering wheel, gear shifter, doors and the upper glovebox.

A B&O Sound premium audio system, and the larger 12.4-inch digital cluster found on the Ranger Raptor and Platinum variants are also standard. The Wildtrak X is also fitted with an overhead auxiliary switch bank for aftermarket accessories.

Under the bonnet, the sole engine choice is the 150kW/500Nm 2.0-litre, mated exclusively to a 10-speed automatic transmission. It’s also the first Ford Ranger to meet the Light Duty Truck EU Stage 6 emissions level and will require the use of AdBlue.

For more information, contact your local Ford dealer. If you’re keen on one and need finance, visit CreditOne.

News Desk
News Desk
The News Desk is the hub of Exhaust Notes Australia. It's from here that our team of writers journalists and photographers bring you the latest happenings from the world of motoring.

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