DRIVEN: Ford Ranger XL Sport

Ford adds some style to the XL model line up with the XL Sport Package.
Ford adds some style to the XL model line up with the XL Sport Package.

If there’s one thing that resonates with most consumers when it comes to purchasing a car is value for money. With prices for cars rising at a rapid rate, manufacturers are always looking for ways to make sure that consumers are getting that value for money. Enter the Ford Ranger XL Sport. The XL model is typically a workhorse but Ford has given it the XL Sport to retain its consumers and lure more in with this package.

Styling

The XL Sport is available as a Single Cab, SuperCab, and Double Cab. What’s so different about it? Well the XL Sport Package includes 17-inch black alloy wheels, black gloss grille, black rear bumper and quite a unique looking tubular sports bar. It adds some character over the standard look XL. Customers can also opt for dealer-fitted black side-steps which not only look good but also improves access to the car’s cabin. Ford has taken a simpleton and has given it some style to those who wish to have it.

Inside

The XL Sport comes standard with Ford’s entry-level SYNC®1 infotainment system with a four-inch LCD display. But now you can order one with the optional eight-inch full-colour touchscreen display that comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. When connected to the applications, it makes life easier when it comes to navigation as you can use apps like Google Maps, Waze and Apple Maps. The seats are a cloth material but are quite comfortable.

The Drive

Powering the XL Sport is a 2.2-litre four-cylinder Duratorq TDCi engine which produces 118kW and 385Nm of torque. It can be ordered in either 4×4 or 4×2, and when it comes to the transmission options it can be ordered with a five-Speed manual or six-speed automatic. I enjoyed driving this car on the open road and in the city. Gear shifts are quite smooth and interestingly enough enjoy the six-speed auto more than the 10-speed. I was tasked to move a bit of furniture for one of my siblings since she was moving house, and thanks to that 385Nm you get from as low as 1500 rpm lugging around the furniture was a breeze. The ride is quite good and soaking up virtually every crack and crevice on the road. Don’t let the name fool you, it shouldn’t be driven hard like a sports car. The option of cruise control would have been highly welcomed as it would make long-distance driving more pleasurable and convenient. For the most part of driving the car, it averaged a decent 8.5 l/100 km which is not far off the claimed 8.2 l/100 km. After a bit of spirited driving managed to get a worst of 11.5 l/100 km.

Safety

When it comes to safety, the XL Sports features Dual front airbags, ISOFIX child seat mounting points (for the Double Cab models, remote-controlled central locking along with an immobiliser and a Thatcham-specification alarm system with volumetric cabin sensors for added security.

Verdict

The XL Sport Package adds R16,500 to the base price whilst the eight-inch infotainment system. R6000 and the dealer-fitted side steps adds another R5,050 to the price tag. I believe the amounts added are justifiable especially the eight-inch infotainment system. You might think it’s too steep but it’s well worth it considering how some of the functionalities on your mobile phone can be projected on the screen just gives you peace of mind. Nice one Ford.

Specs

  • Engine: 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel
  • Power: 118 kW
  • Torque: 385 Nm
  • Transmission: six-speed automatic
  • Acceleration: 0 – 100 km/h –
  • Top Speed: –
  • Fuel Consumption: 8.5 l/100 km (claimed)
  • Price: R 557 300 ( R584 850 with options)
Malusi Msomi
Lover of all things cars. Automotive photographer, freelance motoring journalist and founder of one of the biggest social media automotive communities in the country, DBN Spotter. My world revolves around three words; Drive, shoot, write.