2019 Ranger Lariat’s 2.3-liter EcoBoost Engine Stuns YouTuber

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Ford only offers the U.S.-market 2019 Ranger with one engine. After Doug DeMuro tests a Lariat model, he’s sure they picked the right one.

“One size fits all” is a familiar phrase. It typically applies to adjustable baseball caps, but it also applies to elements of the automotive world. Take the Ford Mustang as an example. The blue oval sells it all over the planet so it has to be just as fun to people in Germany as it is to Americans. The engine in the 2019 Ford Ranger sold in the states is a one-size-fits-all power plant because it’s the only one available in USDM Rangers. As popular YouTuber Doug DeMuro discovers in this review of a $35,000 two-wheel-drive Ranger Lariat, the 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine is a great fit.

There are other things to like about the Ranger, too. DeMuro is impressed by his test truck’s safety equipment, which includes Lane Keep Assist and Adaptive Cruise Control, a feature once reserved for expensive European luxury cars. Ford did a good job of integrating the backup camera into the massive Ford logo on the stamped tailgate.

ford-trucks.com Doug DeMuro Reviews the 2019 Ford Ranger Lariat

Of course, like any other vehicle, the Ranger is not perfect. It rides a bit rougher than DeMuro expected. The back seat area of the SuperCab not only comes up short on legroom for adults, but it also has seatbacks set at an uncomfortable 90 degree angle. Then there’s the fact that Ford will not offer this generation of the Ranger in Raptor form for American consumption. DeMuro comes up with three possible reasons:

1.) The current Ranger is too far along in its lifecycle (it came out in other markets for 2011) to justify the expense of developing a U.S.-spec Raptor. (We think this is the most likely explanation.)

2.) Ford is lying.

3.) The blue oval is clueless. DeMuro cites the sales success of off-road versions of the Toyota Tacoma and Ford F-150 as a strong incentive for Ford to offer a Ranger Raptor in America. He says, “To not make one could only be described as stupid given the success of those types of vehicles with other models and given the brand equity and name recognition that the Raptor already has after Ford has spent so much time and money developing it.”

ford-trucks.com Doug DeMuro Reviews the 2019 Ford Ranger Lariat

The Ranger’s engine makes up for a lot, though. DeMuro raves about how powerful and capable it is. The 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-banger generates 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Those figures add up to excellent acceleration. According to DeMuro, the Ranger “feels faster than Tacoma, Colorado, any versions of them.” It can also tow a hefty amount; DeMuro says, “This truck with this powertrain is rated for up to 7,500 pounds.”

ford-trucks.com Doug DeMuro Reviews the 2019 Ford Ranger Lariat

We’re looking forward to getting our hands on a Ranger for a week in the near future so we can find out for ourselves if its tiny yet mighty EcoBoost fits our expectations and needs.

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Derek Shiekhi's father raised him on cars. As a boy, Derek accompanied his dad as he bought classics such as post-WWII GM trucks and early Ford Mustang convertibles.

After loving cars for years and getting a bachelor's degree in Business Management, Derek decided to get an associate degree in journalism. His networking put him in contact with the editor of the Austin-American Statesman newspaper, who hired him to write freelance about automotive culture and events in Austin, Texas in 2013. One particular story led to him getting a certificate for learning the foundations of road racing.

While watching TV with his parents one fateful evening, he saw a commercial that changed his life. In it, Jeep touted the Wrangler as the Texas Auto Writers Association's "SUV of Texas." Derek knew he had to join the organization if he was going to advance as an automotive writer. He joined the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) in 2014 and was fortunate to meet several nice people who connected him to the representatives of several automakers and the people who could give him access to press vehicles (the first one he ever got the keys to was a Lexus LX 570). He's now a regular at TAWA's two main events: the Texas Auto Roundup in the spring and the Texas Truck Rodeo in the fall.

Over the past several years, Derek has learned how to drive off-road in various four-wheel-drive SUVs (he even camped out for two nights in a Land Rover), and driven around various tracks in hot hatches, muscle cars, and exotics. Several of his pieces, including his article about the 2015 Ford F-150 being crowned TAWA's 2014 "Truck of Texas" and his review of the Alfa Romeo 4C Spider, have won awards in TAWA's annual Excellence in Craft Competition. Last year, his JK Forum profile of Wagonmaster, a business that restores Jeep Wagoneers, won prizes in TAWA’s signature writing contest and its pickup- and SUV-focused Texas Truck Invitational.

In addition to writing for a variety of Internet Brands sites, including JK Forum and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, Derek also contributes to other outlets. He started There Will Be Cars on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube to get even more automotive content out to fellow enthusiasts.

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