About a couple of months ago, Ford South Africa promised us a special edition Ranger and even teased it with several shots showing exterior upgrades. Today they unveiled it to the public at a virtual launch and the latter is looking quite aggressive. The outside is shuffled with distinctive details featuring a new front grille and I suspect Wildtrak owners will be jealous of this model and they may even trade-in their existing bakkies for the Thunder. The Ranger Thunder will be locally built at Ford’s production plants.

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The front features a 3D printed grille design in black colour with red accents which gives the bakkie a grunt look. The black theme extends to most parts of the car like the skid plates, exterior door handles, foglamp surrounds and the 18-inch wheels that come exclusively on the Thunder. The front door panels have the Thunder badge in red and the sports bar has red accents. There are four body paint colours available: Sea Grey, Absolute Black, Frozen White and Moondust Silver.

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There are two engine offerings with each coming with its own gearbox variation. The 2.0 litre BiT twin-turbodiesel 4-cylinder engine produces 210 hp (157 kW) & 500 Nm of torque, mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission and the 3.2-litre TDCi 5-cylinder produces 197 hp (147 kW) and 470 Nm of torque, mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. The 4×4 configuration is available with one engine that is the 2.0 BiT whilst the 4×2 comes with both engines.

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The inside has been swept and has some detailing done to make it feel special. The seats are embroidered with the Thunder badging in red colour and that colour goes all the way to the red stitching on the seats, the steering wheel and the instrument panel. The interior gets some red illumination to follow up with the whole theme of the Thunder.

Prices have been listed for all the variations, confirmed via the Ford South Africa website.

  • Ford Ranger 3.2 TDCi Thunder 6AT 4×2 – R711 600
  • Ford Ranger 2.0 BiT Thunder 10AT 4×2 – R736 000
  • Ford Ranger 2.0 BiT Thunder 10AT 4×4 – R787 000