It was only when I was out on a date with the new 2020 Ford Ranger 2.0L Wildtrak 4×2 that I realized how powerful of an impact that the nameplate has become in such a short amount of time. The term Wildtrak is synonymous not only synonymous to tough, but to Ford’s best as my date was taking pictures and sending it to her friends. But I am here to tell you right now: this car is more than skin deep.
But before we dive into that, we must address the elephant in the room: The Ford Ranger 2.2L FX4 4×4. Due to popular demand, that particular model was released for those who want off-road capability at the faction of the cost. So if you look purely at the price-tag, the off-road capable FX4 4×4 is PhP 39,000 cheaper than the flashy Wildtrak 4×2, which at face value will make you ask: “Why even get the Wildtrak 4×2?” Upon further investigation and testing, you will see that this choice is not about one path being better than the other, but a crossroads with 2 completely different but amazing destinations.
So, if you are looking for an off-roader, clearly the FX4 4×4 is the clear winner. But what the Wildtrak 4×2 has in its sleeves might make you reconsider. I think the biggest difference is that the Wildtrak 4×2 sports the new 2.0L diesel engine the same as the one used in the Ranger Raptor, but only single turbo. Despite its smaller displacement, it churns out 20 bhp more power and 25 lb ft more torque than the FX4. The rest are niceties to consider are things like the LED headlamps, the Wildtrak badging, the Wildtrak interior, dual climate control, voice activation Sync 3, and 6 airbags, among others. That really adds value to the Wildtrak 4×2.
As you can see in this sibling rivalry, both the FX4 4×4 and the Wildtrak 4×2 have their own strengths and merits that boil down to personal preference. For a guy like me that adore going to the road less travelled, the FX4 is a classic off-roader that has a 2020 touch to it. For the majority though that go on the road more travelled and want to do it with style and substance, the Wildtrak 4×2 sounds like the perfect plan.
But now let’s go out of the Ranger family tree and take the Ranger Wildtrak 4×2 versus the competition out there where they too have dressed up versions of their respective 4x2s. It might boil down to preferential taste at this point, but there is something that the Wildtrak 4×2 has that gives it a mechanical advantage: a locking rear-differential. In a nutshell, a locking rear-differential makes both rear wheels spin at the same rate by “locking” it. This is not ideal for normal road conditions when turning is required, but this is super helpful in off-road conditions where you want to send torque to the tire with traction and not a tire that is slipping. When s tire is slipping, that is the tire giving the least resistance, which on an open differential is where the engine will send power to. So long story short: the Ford Ranger 2.0L Wildtrak 4×2 is the in-between of a regular 4×2 and a 4×4. Or the way I see it, a 4×2 with a slight advantage for when things get slippery in a soft-road or a mild off-road condition thanks to the locking rear-differential.
As far as driving is concerned, it feels really polished for a pick-up. The rebound of the suspension is great. Steering is intuitive and light. It feels, dare I say, sedan-like. There is one catch for me though. I think that the fantastic engine and great transmission aren’t the perfect pair. Sure, when you look at them as individuals, they are great. But consider this: you have only so much power that has to be split into 10 sections now. If you were to turn power into pizza, then it makes sense to have 10 slices for a big pizza. But 10 slices for a small one isn’t ideal. And what it translates to on the Wildtrak 4×2 are moments where the pick-up is guessing what gear to be on. It still is a comfortable pick-up to drive in, but this is something to take note of. Maybe it would have been better to pair it up with their already available 6-speed automatic transmission.
If you have always been a fan of the Ford Ranger Wildtrak, now is your opportunity to have one while being reasonable, budget wise. What is also great that even if it is 4×2, it has some level of more capability compared to its 4×2 competitors with the locking rear differential. When you put those two factors together, the Ford Ranger 2.0L Wildtrak 4×2 is the best reasonable pick-up out there which has all the niceties and a tad bit more capability which I hope other manufacturers can follow suit.
|Max Power (bhp @ rpm)||180 bhp @ 3500 rpm|
|Max Torque (lb/ft @ rpm)||310 lb ft @ 1750 - 2500 rpm|
|Transmission||10-Speed Automatic Transmission|
|Top Speed||180 km/h|
|0-100 km/h | 0-62 mph||11.0 sec.|
Fuel consumption and CO2 emissions
|Fuel Milage (km/l)||15.1 km/L Combined|
|Price as Tested (PHP)||PhP 1,455,000|
|What's Great||Ford’s Sync 3 with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, Wildtrak interior, Locking Differential|
|What's Not So||More fond of the FX4 Grille (but that’s personal taste)|
|C! Editors Rating||9.5 / 10|