An interesting statement released by Ford Australia suggests the next-generation Ranger and F-Series will share a new global “body-on-frame” platform.
These new underpinnings will be developed by the Blue Oval brand in the United States, rather than by its Australian arm (as was the case with the current T6 architecture).
“Ford is revamping its global Product Development operations to better meet local market needs and improve efficiency and quality, which includes a move to five modular and flexible architectures,” the statement said, as reported by motoring.com.au.
“As part of those changes, elements of the Ranger platform will integrate with Ford’s single, global body-on-frame flexible architecture, which will be led out of the United States,” it continued, leading to speculation the next F-Series could be built in right-hand-drive form.
“Certain powertrain systems currently engineered in Australia will move to other powertrain sites globally, enabling complexity reduction and scale efficiencies,” the statement continued.
Of course, in mid-January, Ford and Volkswagen confirmed the establishment of a “broad alliance” that will include the Blue Oval brand engineering and building “medium-sized” bakkies “for both companies”.
And this latest statement from Ford also suggested its Australian arm would lead the design process for the next-generation Ranger and (by implication) for elements of the eventual replacement for the Amarok.
“Ford Motor Company is assigning new design work to Ford Australia to support global projects as the company continues to drive improvements to its global product development (PD) operations.
“The Australian-based Asia Pacific Product Development Centre will take on additional global PD projects, boosting local expertise in advanced electrical engineering, interior and exterior automotive design and engineering, and feature integration,” Ford said.
According to a CarAdvice report, the changes will result in around 200 job losses Down Under.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.