FORD props up the Ranger as one of the toughest trucks in the market, boasting class-leading capabilities that include unmatched water-wading skills as it’s rated to take on depths of up to 800 millimeters (over 2.5 feet). That means flashfloods on the road—a fixture these months—can easily be traversed by this truck, Ford said.
Key to the Ranger’s water-wading capability is that its major electrical components and air inlets are strategically placed high in the engine compartment, enabling the pickup to go deeper than any other in its segment, according to Ford. Components that are below the water line—fuel tanks and rear parking sensors, for instance—were suitably waterproofed to ensure these would do the job even when wet. Fact is the biggest challenge for the Ranger engineers was to find a place for all the components, which was no small feat considering the height of the water line changes depending on whether the vehicle is moving or stationary.
“We did it in the end, and we’re very proud of how deep the Ranger can go,” said Tom Dohrmann, the development engineer in charge of Ranger’s water management. “When faced with a water crossing, you’ll be able to drive it into the water deeper than the competition can, through the water, out of the water and onto safe ground.”
Ford said the Ranger has gone through extreme testing around the world to make sure it could stand up to rigorous terrains and temperatures. The truck was tested in Australia, Dubai, Thailand, North America, South America, Sweden and South Africa, and had to face severe heat and cold, monsoon rains, high altitudes, as well as rushing rivers, arid deserts and potholed roads. Prototypes clocked more than a million kilometers on the road, supported by countless hours of exhaustive testing in laboratories.
WHEN IT RAINS
FORD OFFERS UP THESE WET-SEASON DRIVING TIPS
· Check brakes, steering, fluid levels, tire pressure and tread depth, as well as the defroster
· Keep a good emergency kit, which should include a spare tire, torch, fuses, an air pump, water, first-aid supplies and other items to attract help
· Make sure that wipers are in good condition and functioning properly
· Pay attention to speed as rain can create a thin sheet of water between the tires and the road, making the surface slippery
· Switch on the headlights as this will increase visibility for other drivers so they can see you from a distance
· Avoid sudden braking as the car will probably skid
· Maintain a safe distance from the vehicle ahead, especially from large buses or trucks as the spray thrown off by their rear wheels reduce visibility
· Avoid pools of water as it’s impossible to know what’s underneath the surface
· Do not drive through water if you cannot see how deep it is
· When stuck in the mud, accelerate slowly and don’t spin the wheels as these could sink deeper