An innovative camouflage hides the next-gen Ford Ranger in plain sight

Next-generation Ranger

The Blue Oval brand might be showing the next-generation Ranger to the world, but it does not want to fully reveal the design just yet — the reason why Ford’s well-loved pickup truck will be wearing the latest camouflage around.

Inspired by the block pattern on the Bronco R Baja racer, as well as mountain ranges, the newest camouflage uses blue, black and white blocks in a pixelated pattern to prevent industry spies from being able to focus on the vehicle’s features while still under development.

“While Ford is not trying to hide the fact that this is the #NextGenRanger thanks to the hashtag and QR code built into the pattern, it doesn’t want to fully reveal the final design just yet,” Ford mentioned in a statement.

The said pattern was designed by a team at Ford’s Design Center in Melbourne, Australia. The arrangement “makes it difficult to pick out exterior features in sunlight, while a reflective element helps hide the vehicle’s shape at night.”

Next-generation Ford Ranger

Ford Australia Design Manager Leigh Cosentino said that they were asked to develop a camouflage that "allowed you to clearly see that this is the new Ranger but not see it at the same time.”

Cosentino explained that the developing the design was about more than just concealing key features of the vehicle. “We wanted the design to be dynamic and exciting and build anticipation towards the reveal of #NextGenRanger without looking like a derivative of military camouflage,” he said.

“So, we ended up with this design which is dense at the bottom and then the pattern becomes scattered towards the roof. It ends up being a good camouflage, is visually exciting but also gives the pattern a sense of movement. It’s not the usual static type of camouflage."

Ford Australia designer Lee Imrie said that there is there’s no line work on this camo that aligns with anything on the exterior, and would prevent one from seeing the volume, shape or lines in the vehicle.

 “My intention with this design was to scatter your eye so that you can’t focus on a specific line; and the color patching adds to that effect,” the designer said, noting that the inspiration originally came from the Baja livery Ford has been using.

Teaser for the upcoming all-new Ford Ranger

Aside from the pattern on the Bronco R racer, Imrie said that the inspiration also came from the next-generation Ranger itself.

“I started with squares rotated at 45 degrees, and scattered them throughout the page, attempting to make a recurring silhouette of a mountain-top landscape which echoed the lifestyle orientation of the next-generation Ranger. When you stand back, it has a clear connection to a digitized military camouflage but with a connection to nature,” he claimed.

The digitized pattern took the team two months to develop and test. It’s printed onto vinyl and applied in two stages, taking up to two days to apply. The full-vehicle base layer contains the blue, black, and white blocks and is applied in the same way a regular wrap is. The second, reflective "layer" consists of up to 100 individual reflective elements hand placed on the vehicle.

Next-generation Ford Ranger

The wraps will finally come off the next-generation Ranger later this year.

In the meantime, Ford engineers will be conducting final sign-off drives on #NextGenRanger with the QR code designed to allow those who see it to engage and subscribe to a Next-Gen Ranger-specific email newsletter.

Relatedly, the camouflaged version might not be seen running on Philippine roads as there are “no plans yet” on bringing it here, per Ford Philippines Assistant Vice President for Communications EJ Francisco.

Photos from Ford Philippines

Also read:

Picking up off-roading value: Ford FX4 Max

Ford revamps Ranger lineup

Ford PH Brings Refreshed Ranger Lineup

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