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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist

PHEV next generation Ford Ranger will be built locally but unlikely to be offered

Combination of an electric motor and the US Ranger's 2.3 EcoBoost petrol will allegedly result in an output of 270kW/680Nm.

Ford has reportedly confirmed that a plug-in hybrid rather than a full hybrid powerunit had been selected for the next generation Ranger as part of its zero emissions drive in Europe by 2024.

While it has been known for some time, Australia’s carexprt.com.au reports that the plug-in hybrid configuration will comprise of the 2.3 EcoBoost petrol used in the American-spec Ranger combined with an electric motor for a claimed output of 270kW/680Nm, well up on the 200kW/420Nm the engine produces without electrical assistance. It seemingly therefore rules-out the bigger 3.0-litre V6 PHEV unit used in the Explorer.

The online publication has also alleges that the powerunit will be built in South Africa as the European-spec Ranger is sourced from the Silverton Plant outside Pretoria and not Thailand like the Australian market Ranger, this despite the EcoBoost being offered in North America and nowhere else.

When it does become a reality, the electrified EcoBoost will join an engine line-up mostly brand-new with the only carryover being the single and bi-turbodiesel 2.0-litre Panther units that will replace the 2.2 and 3.2-litre Puma engines. The line-up will be headed by the 186kW/597Nm 3.0-litre Powerstroke V6 turbodiesel used in the F-150 as well as the 2.7 EcoBoost V6 from the Bronco that pushes out 231kW/542Nm.

The latter pair will provide motivation for the next generation Raptor following a report earlier this month alleging the petrol will be offered with right-hand-drive in addition to the diesel. At present, the only transmission mentioned for all models is the General Motors co-developed ten-speed automatic.

While set to be revealed this year as indicated by spy images, the Ranger will only go into production next year at Silverton following the Blue Oval’s record R15.8-billion investment earlier this month for not only it, but also the all-new Volkswagen Amarok that will use the Ranger as a base and allegedly also spawn a Raptor-esque model known as the Amarok R.

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