Ford Reportedly Working on New Compact Unibody Pickup
Ford is reportedly moving full steam ahead by bringing back the compact pickup. But it isn’t what you think.
Ford has been incredibly clear about its plans to expand both truck and SUV production in recent months. Which should come as no surprise to anyone following the automotive industry. The company already sells more trucks and SUVs than anyone in the U.S., so why not capitalize on what’s working? With multiple new products on the way, including the Bronco and a compact off-road utility, the next logical step is a return to the compact pickup market. And according to Automobile, that’s exactly what Ford is currently working on.
But fans of the old Ranger are going to have to keep dreaming. Because this new compact pickup reportedly isn’t of body-on-frame construction, but rather a unibody. More specifically, Ford is eyeing a replacement for the old Brazilian-built Fiesta-based Courier, which it killed back in 2013. But instead of selling this small truck strictly overseas, Automobile says that “sources familiar with Ford’s future product plan” say that they’re “considering” bringing it to the U.S. Perhaps as early as next year.
This would, of course, give Ford a compact pickup they can slot below the formerly compact Ranger. But the new version would be based on the new Focus platform instead of the Fiesta, meaning it’ll also be larger than the old Courier. It would also be a bit of a preemptive move on Ford’s part after they missed out on the mid-size truck resurgence. Plus, the automaker is no stranger to building unibody trucks. Remember the early ’60s F-100s, or even the Ranchero? Heck, Australia’s various ‘utes were pretty cool, too.
No word on whether Ford plans to retain the Courier name. They could also come up with a new one, or even resurrect yet another legendary nameplate from their archives. All we know is that if they plan on slapping the Ranchero tag on this little unibody, it better at least be rear-wheel drive!