1992 Ranger Owner Gushes about His First Truck

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1992 Ford Ranger John Deere Edition

Something like a beat-up Ranger makes a great first vehicle for a young driver.

Many kids nearing driving age dream of piloted some variety of new vehicle, but for many 16-year-olds, a Ford Ranger is a far more reasonable first vehicle. According to this writer from the Ohio Country Journal, his 1992 Ford Ranger with a John Deere livery was the perfect first vehicle and today, we examine his reasoning.

The 1992 Ford Ranger

The original piece from the Ohio Country Journal was written by a guy named Joel Penhorwood, whose first vehicle was a 1992 Ford Ranger. Like many small trucks from that era, it was powered by a 4-cylinder engine mated to a 5-speed manual transmission, with rear-drive and a cab that would really only comfortably seat two people.

Making this particular 1992 Ranger unique was the color combination, with white exterior paint, green-and-yellow stripes and a bright red interior. It seems likely that this truck came from the factory with a red interior and a white exterior that matched a  bit better. However, when it served as a John Deere dealership service truck, it was equipped with the green-and-yellow side stripes, John Deere logos on the bedside and John Deere-branded mud flaps. Sure, the green and yellow don’t exact work with the bright red interior, but it made this truck that much more interesting.

The writer paid just $400 for this 1992 Ranger, but he got every cent worth of use out of it and that was why it served as a perfect first vehicle.


1992 Ranger Hauling Hay

Driving the John Deere Truck

While a 1992 Ranger rear-wheel-drive truck with a base 4-cylinder engine, a manual transmission and a regular cab might not seem like the most exciting first vehicle, this John Deere-themed truck was perfect for the owner. It had some dents on the fender that occurred in a fight outside of a bar, some other dents that the owner’s older brother added when he hit a real deer and the level of surface rust that you would expect from a 1992 truck being purchased in 2009, but the fact that it wasn’t flawless played into why it was the perfect first vehicle.

The owner clearly grew up on a farm and he used his little Ranger to haul loads of hay and over a half-ton of bagged horse grain. He also used this compact Ford truck to blast through the fields and to carry scores of friends to watch the local fireworks, all without any concern of damaging the “Danger Ranger”.

Although it wasn’t fast, taking more than 30 seconds to run from a stop up to 60 miles per hour, the young owner could rely on the 1992 John Deere Ranger to do everything that he needed it to do and since it really wasn’t very nice – he was free to enjoy the truck without worries of devaluing the machine.

While it seems like a nice thought to drive a brand new vehicle when you turn 16, anyone who spent their early driving days in a beat up pickup like this John Deere-themed 1992 Ranger will attest that the freedom of driving an older truck and not having a car payment outweighs the advantages of a newer truck with nice paint and a big payment.

Photos: Ohio Country Journal

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