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2009 Ford Ranger Review

The 2009 Ford Ranger lags behind rival pickups that have nicer cabins, more interior space and better safety scores.  

Pros & Cons

  • Strong available V6 engine
  • Outdated design
  • Low-rent interior
  • Cramped extended cab back seats
  • Poor safety score




Critics' Rating: 6.0
Performance: 6.2
Interior: 6.5
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.3
Safety: 7.5
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2009 Ford Ranger Overview

When it was new, reviewers noticed that the 2009 Ranger didn’t offer the performance or comfortable ride found on rival compact trucks. Although other trucks have more powerful engines, reviewers said that the Ranger’s base four-cylinder and available V6 engines offer enough power for the chores they’re put up to, and that as long as you’re not looking for a luxurious daily driver, the Ranger should meet your needs. Many recommended the V6-powered Ranger if you want to do any moderate towing or hauling. Both manual and automatic transmissions were offered, and reviewers were pleased with both when the Ranger was new. Rear- and four-wheel drive are also available. Maximum fuel economy estimates are 21/26 mpg city/highway, which are slightly better than what rival trucks offer. The Ranger can tow up to 6,000 pounds.

Reviewers didn’t offer much praise for the Ranger’s cabin when it was new. Most noted cheap plastics and an outdated, though straightforward, design. The Ranger was available as a regular cab that seats up to three or an extended cab that can seat up to five. While reviewers found the front seats adequate, most said that the Ranger is best thought of as a two-seater since extended cab models have rear jump seats that are painfully small. Like most compact trucks, the base XL trim comes sparsely equipped with an AM/FM stereo. Available features include an upgraded stereo with satellite radio, cruise control, keyless entry, power windows, locks and mirrors, front bucket seats and leather upholstery.

See the full 2009 Ford Ranger specs »

Other Trucks to Consider

The 2009 Toyota Tacoma is a more well-rounded compact pickup, and reviewers said it makes a great daily driver. It has similar powertrain offerings and a similar towing capacity to the Ranger, but is available with a more passenger-friendly crew cab configuration, as well as much better safety ratings.

The 2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac makes up for the Ranger’s shortcomings with a more upscale interior, better safety ratings, a higher towing capacity and an available V8 engine. While it doesn’t offer as much cargo space in the bed, the Explorer Sport Trac’s spacious cabin makes it a better choice for those who frequently have multiple passengers.

Compare the Ranger to the Tacoma and Explorer Sport Trac »

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