Here in the United States, the Ford Ranger has been relegated to something of an also-ran in the Blue Oval’s off-road-ready pickup truck ranks. The F-150, of course, offers the mighty Raptor; the F-250 and F-350 Super Duty, as of their latest refresh, offer a new Tremor package that pumps up their capability for the land beyond the pavement. The Ranger, however, has largely been forced to live with scraps by comparison — except in other parts of the world, where it comes in full-blown Ranger Raptor form.
Well, as of the 2021 model year, the Ranger is comparatively neglected in America no longer. No, the Ranger Raptor isn’t coming to our shores, but we are getting what could be the next best thing: a new Tremor package for the midsize pickup.
The existing FX4 Off-Road package available on the Ranger certainly gave it some added capability, but as in the Super Duty models, the Tremor takes the foundation of an already-solid truck and builds upon it by upgrading the basics: namely, the suspension and tires. Fox monotube dampers come standard on the Tremor, to provide a comfortable ride / handling balance both on- and off-road; likewise, the rest of the suspension has also been retuned for better control over rough terrain. The changes increase ground clearance to 9.7 inches — nearly a full inch more than a regular 4WD Ranger SuperCrew.
But tires matter just as much as suspension when off-roading. So to make sure it has grip when it needs it, the Ranger Tremor packs a quartet of 32-inch Continental General Grabber A/TX all-terrain tires that make this truck an inch wider than its siblings, wrapped around 17-inch wheels. The powertrain is unchanged — it still packs a turbocharged 2.3-liter inline-four and a 10-speed automatic — but that power flows to those wheels through a standard rear locking differential.
Skid plates and a front bash plate come standard, as well, in order to help the Ranger Tremor defend itself from attacking rocks and such. Should you wind up going a little too wild and getting stuck, it also packs two recovery hooks in back to go along with the two up front. And those of the shorter persuasion will be glad to hear that the Tremor offers hoop steps that give you an easier way to hop into the cabin without sacrificing ground clearance.
That’s not the only visual identifier of a Tremor, however. The grille features black bars across its middle, red “nostril accents” up in the corners and a gray surround, while both sides of the bed feature “Tremor” branding. Inside, that same logo can be found on the microsuede-insert-equipped seats, and a six-switch auxiliary bank sits ready to be hooked up to control aftermarket add-ons. (There’s also an optional graphics package, but don’t feel like you have to opt for it.)
The Tremor package is limited to crew cab Rangers with 4WD, and it can’t be had on the base XL version; you have to opt for an XLT or Lariat. But if you can live with that, the additional $4,290 spent on the seismic-sounding add-on seems well worth it.
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