Question of the Week: Should the ’19 Ranger Have a Manual?
Manual transmissions are a favorite among enthusiasts, but are they worth Ford’s investment?
Ford Motor Company has removed the manual transmission option from all of the consumer-grade F-Series pickups. That means that if you’re buying a new F-150, F-250 or F-350, you can only get an automatic transmission whether you get a gasoline or diesel engine.
Some might be appalled by the lack of a manual transmission option in the heavy-duty Ford pickups, but with plummeting consumer demand and interest, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise. None of the competing half-ton trucks sold in America come with a manual transmission, and although the Ram HD does, you can’t get a Chevrolet or GMC heavy-duty truck with a third pedal.
To make things even more interesting (and confusing), the most popular midsize truck in America still comes with a manual transmission. The Toyota Tacoma, which is the best-selling truck in the segment, comes with a manual transmission standard. Furthermore, the manual is the most-used transmission in the foreign markets where the Ranger is currently offered.
The new American Ranger will be developed by members of the team who designed the current foreign Ranger, so a manual transmission seems possible, if not likely.
With that in mind, do you think that the upcoming Ford Ranger should feature a manual transmission as an option, even if it’s only for the lower trim levels?