We asked that question to Robert Bancroft, President of Ashley Ford. The last model manufactured was the 2011.
“The Ford Ranger was at the end of its lifecycle,” explained Mr. Bancroft. “The Ranger was built off of the same platform as the Ford Explorer. But when Ford Motor Co. completely redesigned the Ford Explorer and changed the platform from a body on frame to a uni-body that meant the Ranger would need to be redesigned as well. Ford Motor Co. determined that in order to produce the Ranger with this same platform would be too cost prohibitive. The cost of the Ranger would then be nearly as expensive as the F-150.”
It was determined that the Ford F-150 with it’s 3.5L and 3.7L 6 cylinder engine would actually get better gas mileage than the Ranger so Ford Motor Co. decided to discontinue the Ford Ranger.
Many Ranger users were commercial customers who needed a compact pick up with an enclosed box. Many of these Rangers customers chose to purchase a cap to make it useful for their business. In comes the Ford Transit Connect. Bancroft explained “the Transit Connect has filled that void. It’s a perfect fuel-efficient van replacement for the Ranger and most of our customers are delighted with the Transit Connect. Another nice feature is that businesses can personalize their van and turn it into a traveling billboard for their company.”