The Ford Ranger is a nameplate that has been used on three distinct model lines of cars sold by Ford. Originally, the name was used by the short-lived Edsel Ranger car, then it later referred to a version of the Ford F-Series pickup truck sold in North America between model year 1965 and 1981 that denoted a styling package. Ford repurposed the name "Ranger" in 1982 for the 1983 model year for a compact pickup truck sold in North America and, later, parts of South America. Since 1998, Ford has offered a separate model of Ranger sold internationally.
Americas (1983–2011 model years)
For the 1983 model year, Ford introduced the Ford Ranger for the United States and Canada. Replacing the 1971-1982 Ford Courier (a rebadged Mazda B-Series), the Ranger was the first compact pickup truck designed by Ford Motor Company. In 1995, exports of the Ford Ranger began in select Latin and South American countries. To accommodate the demand for the vehicle, in 1998, Ford Argentina commenced local production of the Ranger, introducing a four-door cab not sold in North America.
Over its 29-year production, the Ford Ranger was produced over the same chassis architecture. Alongside a major redesign in 1993, the model saw mid-cycle updates for 1989, and 1998, with smaller updates in 2001 and 2004. In South America, for 2010, the Ranger saw all-new exterior sheetmetal not given to its North American counterpart. The Ford Ranger served as the basis for several models, including the Ford Bronco II compact SUV, the first two generations of the Ford Explorer mid-size SUV (alongside the Mazda Navajo and Mercury Mountaineer), and the first-generation Ford Explorer Sport Trac mid-size pickup truck. In 1994, Mazda began sales of the B-Series in the United States and Canada by rebadging the Ford Ranger, the reverse of the Mazda-sourced Ford Courier.
On December 22, 2011, the final Ford Ranger produced for North America rolled off the assembly line, becoming the final vehicle assembled at Twin Cities Assembly. For the 2012 model year, Ford Argentina began assembly of the Ford Ranger T6.
In 2017, Ford announced that a redesigned version of the Ranger T6 would be sold in North America as a 2019 model; the Ranger would form the basis for a Ford Bronco SUV as a potential 2020 model.
For markets outside of North America, Ford badge engineered the Japanese-built Mazda B-Series as the Courier starting in 1971, renaming it the Ranger in 1998; the Courier nameplate was retained in Australasia until 2006. The Courier was also sold in North America prior to the 1983 model year. Second-generation models from 2006 to 2011 were also designed by Mazda, being rebadged versions of the successor to the B-Series, the BT-50. Third-generation models, as produced since 2011, were designed and engineered by Ford Australia, with Mazda offering a derivative version of the Ford as the second generation BT-50. The Ford Ranger is also the basis for the Ford Everest SUV and therefore, the Ranger and the Everest share a number of features.