Picking up off-roading value: Ford FX4 Max
These days, while we funnel our hard-earned money to necessities, it also almost impossible ignore a fun-to-drive ride.
So local automotive distributors made sure that the pickup truck segment stays hot during these times. Take the case of Ford Philippines and what it has did with the Ford Ranger lineup.
During the online launch, then Ford Philippines President and Managing Director PK Umashankar—who recently left his post to assume the position of director at Ford Customer Service Division, International Markets Group (IMG)—said the Ford Ranger FX4 Max was made to make off-road vehicles affordable.
So, compared to its capabilities, is the model affordable? Here’s our take on this latest addition in the Ranger lineup based on the one-of-kind test drive experience prior to the launch.
The Ford Ranger FX4 Max is 5,354mm long, 1,860mm wide and 1,852mm high, making it the tallest and among the whole lineup even versus the top-tiered Wildtrak. It also has the highest ground clearance of all the 14 variants that Ford has for the Ranger.
Simply put, with the size of the Ranger FX4 Max, it is easy even to imagine the sufficient leg and head room is given due consideration. The same can be said with its capability to negotiate elephant holes, and other uneven portions of the terrain that we experienced.
The Ranger FX4 Max shows enough bulk, but not enough to help you easily distinguish it from its brethren.
What does separate it are differently designed 17-inch black alloy wheels, as well as four separate side steps with non-slip finish (instead of the usual stepboards that cover each side) and the matte-black tubular sports bar that matches its bedliner.
Illuminating the road ahead are projector headlamps and halogen fog lamps.
The macho effect of the Ranger FX4 Max extends inside. Occupants will be welcomed by leather seats that sports carbon accents with Miko suede inserts and FX4 Max embroidery.
The sport pedals as well as the meaty leather-wrapped steering wheel are some of the touches that drivers will enjoy on the Ranger FX4 Max.
The vehicle also comes with all-weather front and rear floor mats that make a strong statement that it is designed for the outdoors.
Under the hood is a 2.0-liter Bi-Turbo diesel engine with a maximum output of 210 horsepower and 500Nm torque.
This engine—which can also be found on the Ranger Raptor and Wildtrak 4x4—is matched to a 10-speed automatic transmission making it fuel-efficient when driven for daily use.
The Ranger FX4 Max is fitted with two-inch monotube Fox shocks that would dampen the effects of bad ruts. As of the moment, this is just a pipe dream for the Wildtrak, which only has double wishbone and leaf spring at the back.
Care to add more tools for the FX4 Max? Well no need to add more holes for extra toggle switches as this is the only member of the Ranger lineup that has a ready auxiliary switch pack: ready for upcoming modifications.
The Ranger FX4 Max has an introductory price of ₱1.698 million (or should you wish to buy later, ₱1.758 million).
The Ford Ranger FX4 Max definitely has the heart and abilities of an off-roader with what it’s capable of. This could easily be a good pick if you’re in the market for a Ranger Raptor (which has a price tag ₱2,000 shy of P2 million) but your working budget is for a Wildtrak.
Photos from Ruben D. Manahan IV, Ford Philippines