2019 Ford Ranger Vs. 2019 Toyota Tacoma: Mid-Size Matchup

Tacoma V Ranger

By Brian Normile

We last compared the upcoming new 2019 Ford Ranger to the other new mid-size pickup truck on the block, the 2020 Jeep Gladiator. Now it's time to see how it stacks up to an established player in the class, the sales king of the mid-size trucks, the Toyota Tacoma.

Related: 2019 Ford Ranger Pulls Ahead in Gas Engine EPA Ratings

Of course, at this stage, this story is just on paper; however, after the 2019 Ford Ranger press drive later this week, we'll be driving off with a new Ranger to put into an actual head-to-head comparison against a new Tacoma, so stay tuned for our impressions and results toward the end of December. Ford thinks the comparison will be favorable — we're told it's going to have a comparable Tacoma on hand for members of the media to drive during the Ranger drive event.

It's also worth noting that we still don't have all the Ranger's specifications — no curb weight, for example, and only max towing and payload numbers (nothing is broken down by cab or equipment), so this is simply a quick and dirty comparison. We'll have more information and details to come.

Measurements

The most popular models in the mid-size pickup class are four-door crew cabs and both the Ranger and Tacoma have similar offerings. The Ranger SuperCrew (aka crew cab) offers a shorter bed. The SuperCab (also known as the extended cab) uses the same wheelbase but has a bed that's 1 foot longer. Toyota calls its crew cab the double cab and its extended cab an Access Cab and offers two different wheelbases to provide more length and size diversity. We'll get to exact bed length measurements in a bit. For now, here are the apples-to-apples measurements and specifications.

07-toyota-tacoma-2018 front action II

RANGER (in inches; all models unless otherwise noted)

  • Wheelbase: 126.8 (only one offered)
  • Length: 210.8
  • Width: 85.8 (from mirror to mirror)
  • Height: 71.1 (SuperCrew 4x2 and SuperCab 4x4), 71.5 (SuperCrew 4x4), 70.7 (SuperCab 4x2)
  • Front track: 61.4
  • Rear track: 61.4

TACOMA

  • Wheelbase: 127.4, 140.6 (double-cab short bed, long bed)
  • Length: 212.3, 225.5 (double-cab, short bed, long bed)
  • Width: 74.4, 75.2 (with optional overfenders not mirror to mirror)
  • Height: 70.6, 71.6 (TRD Pro)
  • Front track: 63, 64 (TRD Pro)
  • Rear track: 63.2, 64.2 (TRD Pro)

Off-Roading

Ford will offer its FX4 Off-Road Package on the Ranger, while Toyota goes at least one step further with the dedicated TRD Pro off-road trim on top of two other TRD-branded option packages. This leads to much greater variation in off-road capabilities for the Taco depending on how it's equipped.

RANGER

  • Approach/breakover/departure: 27.9/22.7/25.2 degrees (4x2), 28.7/21.5/25.4 (4x4)
  • Ground clearance: 8.4 inches (4x2), 8.9 (4x4)
  • 4-Low drive ratio: 2.72:1

TACOMA

  • Approach/breakover/departure: 29/24/23.5 degrees (4x2 Access Cab), 29/20-21/23.5 (4x2 double cab), 29/20-21/23.1 (4x2 double-cab long bed), 32/20-21/23.5 (4x2 double-cab TRD Off-Road), 29/24/23 (4x4 Access Cab), 32/24/23 (4x4 Access-Cab TRD Off-Road), 29/21/23.5 (4x4 double cab), 29/21/23.1 (4x4 double-cab long bed), 32/21/23.5 (4x4 double-cab TRD Off-Road), 35/26/23.9 (4x4 double-cab TRD Pro)
  • Ground clearance: 9.4 inches
  • 4-Low drive ratio: 2.57:1

2019 Ranger towing boat copy II

Towing, Hauling and Beds

To reiterate: The only way Ranger buyers can opt for a longer than 5-foot bed is by selecting the SuperCab with the longer 6-foot bed. Tacoma does offer a longer bed with the double cab by offering a longer wheelbase option, but you will be prevented from ordering the TRD Off-Road and TRD Pro trims. Also, the Ranger's numbers are not yet as fleshed out as other pickups in the class, but once we get one we'll have a tape measure and scale waiting at the ready.

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As you might expect, the Tacoma offers greater variation and diversity in its maximum payload and towing numbers thanks to its engine options (an inline four-cylinder and a V-6) and multi-wheelbase strategy. The Ranger currently offers only the gas turbocharged four-cylinder. The Tacoma is also available with a manual transmission, which slightly affects payload capacities.

RANGER

  • Bed length: 61 inches (SuperCrew), 72.8 inches (SuperCab)
  • Maximum width: 61.4 inches
  • Bed width at rear wheels: 44.8 inches
  • Max towing capacity: 7,500 pounds
  • Max payload: 1,560 pounds (SuperCrew 4x4), 1,650 (SuperCab 4x4), 1,770 (SuperCrew 4x2); 1,860 (SuperCab 4x2)

TACOMA

  • Bed length: 60.5 inches, 73.7 inches
  • Maximum bed width: 56.7 inches
  • Bed width at rear wheels: 41.5 inches
  • Max towing capacity: 3,500 pounds (four-cylinder models), 6,400 (4x4 double cab with V-6 Tow Prep Package), 6,500 (4x4 Access Cab with V-6 Tow Prep Package), 6,600 (4x2 double-cab long bed with V-6 Tow Prep Package), 6,700 (4x2 double cab with V-6 Tow Prep Package), 6,800 (4x2 Access Cab with V-6 Tow Prep Package)
  • Max payload: 1,155 (4x4 V-6 manual double cab), 1,175 (4x4 V-6 automatic double cab), 1,275 (4x4 V-6 manual Access Cab), 1,295 (4x4 V-6 automatic Access Cab), 1,380 (4x4 four-cylinder automatic Access Cab), 1,405 (4x4 four-cylinder manual Access Cab), 1,420 (4x2 V-6 manual double cab), 1,505 (4x2 four-cylinder automatic double cab), 1,540 (4x2 V-6 automatic Access Cab), 1,620 pounds (4x2 four-cylinder automatic Access Cab)

Cars.com graphic by Paul Dolan; Cars.com photos by Christian Lantry; manufacturer image

90-toyota-tacoma-2018-angle--exterior--front--grey copy II

 

Comments

Chevy and GMC have never had the benchmark for pretend trucks or the best selling. They've always had to settle for 2nd at best but only rise that high when the Ranger hasn't been present.

Ford would be wasting their time targeting Colorado or Canyon. The Taco is king of this little toy truck world in NA and the Ranger is only competitor to ever beat it in NA and some other countries on occasion.

For those with little payloads, don't tow, and no real work to do and money to burn on your ride its a very exciting time in the little pretend truck world. I'm looking forward to actual comparisons and competitions between the makes/models and eventually actual sales figures. I'm confident the Taco will be king for at least a good while longer. But like the half ton full size market chevy may be going from #2 to #3.

These are not pretend trucks. Midsize trucks have real beds and can carry things that a car, suv, or crossover cannot. Most of the World uses trucks no bigger than our midsize trucks for work and for everything else. How many half ton pickups are actually used for work and how many actually use their half tons to tow with. Most half ton trucks are crew cabs and are used as family vehicles and recreation vehicles. You don't have to own a full size truck to get use out of it. I use my S-10 a lot to pickup items and haul away items that will not fit into a car, suv, or crossover. I probably use my S-10 more for hauling than most use their half ton full size trucks. Perfect size and easy to reach into the bed. I have more than gotten my use out of my trucks. If one wants a toy why bother with a truck when a Miata or Corvette is much more fun to drive and more engaging. I don't waste money on toys--I use what I drive.

@Clint

Write this on your fridge, or your bathroom mirror--it will help you keep things in perspective.

GM has sold more pickups than Ford the last 4 years. GM sold 2x as many trucks as RAM.

2019 is an all new year and it will be fun to watch things shake out.

@ papajim You can't declare 2018 yet it is still 2018. If third quarter was any indication it will only be three.

@JTT

The GM numbers look pretty good so far, for 2018. I think you've become obsessed with the fear of being in second place all the time.

@ papajim Obsessed with second? Ford has been number 1 for over 40 years.

Papajim

‘American men (and women) have been getting bigger lately. Taller, heavier. Nobody wants to drop 40k on a pickup that is cramped and your knees are up around your ear lobes when you're out driving.’

Plus
Towing capacity: 7500-6800=700
Payload:1860-1620=240
Those numbers don't lie.

‘If...decently comfortable cabin in the new Ranger, it's a home run...’ I would add it will be a grand slam -"It is high, it is far, it is gone!" "Ballgame over! Yankees win! Theeeeeee Yankees win!" thank you John Sterling.

I doubt the Ranger will have a crowded and uncomfortable cab. The Colorado and Canyon have decent sized cabs. You don't have to have a physically larger vehicle to have a comfortable interior. Most of today's vehicles have grown in size and the the seats and interiors have grown as well to accommodate the growing girth of the average American otherwise people will not buy these vehicles.

@dale Milner

Ford doesn’t have a “small V8” to put in the Ranger.
They have the 5.0 Coyote and the 6.2. That’s it.

Ford is going to DI EcoBoost and that will take decades to change. They STILL use the garbage small bore V10 in HD fleet vehicles. The Mustang has a V8 for nostalgia reasons and the HD pickups have them for long-term durability. Think about that next time someone is taking about the Eco-Boost. It isn’t even an OPTION in the Super Duty. Engineers know why, everyone else thinks HP is HP.

All of this overlooks the fact that the coyote is dimensionally large and the Ranger engine bay simply wasn’t engineered for it. It is a global platform. Outside of the US and Australia, V8s aren’t common.

Colorado’s interior is so horrible it excludes it from the conversation.

Let's hope it's not a maintenance black hole like Tacoma. I own a 2005. Rotten frame replacement aside, this rice burner is a bottomless pit $ for maintenance. 2018 was $10K alone and $5K of that was end-to-end exhaust. I am glad FORD has come up with a comparable truck and I'm looking forward to buying it. I will never by Toyota again

I have a 2017 Tacoma and it is awful

Toyota is better than any Ranger you leg humping Ford jabronies!!!!

Well I own a 2019 Tacoma and I like it but I would trade it for a Tundra if there was a Tundra crewmax with a 6' bed.
The payload of the tacoma is pretty abysmal on the 4x4 DC LB and I didn't realize that at the time of purchase, not that I don't expect to totally violate that capacity regardless.

@the FAKE Nick

Since your 2019 Tacoma is entirely a figment of your adolescent imagination, you can load as much freight in the back as you like. While you're at it, why not install a solar powered engine? Should run really great then!

To me, a pickup truck will always be full-size half-ton and higher-rated. Everything else, midsize or compact calling itself a truck, is really just a sedan with a bed.

These sedans-with-a-bed took the place of the Ranchero and Jimmy that did the same thing, way back when there were no “midsize or compact trucks.”

RANGER IS AS UGLY AS THE RIDGELINE !!!!

As much as I hate over hyped Toyota's the Tacoma looks better,it looks like a truck,not a female truckster the Ranger is..

Wait until the feminine Bronco comes out lol,it is a 4 door suv based on this truck,add a suv back end and this is the Bronco lol

I should add,I think the Tacoma is a extremely ugly truck,but the Range is one step behind the Tacoma's Ugly !

I did not say the Tacoma looks good,its like judging between hard number 2 and Diarrhea !

Reading all these comments intrigue me. I’d choose a Duramax Zr2 Colorado over the taco or the Ranger. & for the fan boys that like to support their own Rice Burner Brand Ford; you guys a funny, giving turbo tech cars & trucks crap, when your the brand that has officially rice burned every car, truck, suv you sell. Good job at contradicting the traditional V8, & the fact that you can’t even get a 8cyl raptor is completely funny. But hey riceeee-burnnneerrr, noise coming out of that exhaust when it drives by you. Obviously ford does their testing but they claim to give the people what they want so we’res the 6.2L V8?

Tacos are better than any Ranger or Colorado you Gm and Ford jabronies!!!

Btw...some punk last night in a new Raptor tried being fancy and revi g his motor up. That junk sound coming out of tailpipe by the ecoboost was a joke. Wish I would have had my 6.2L but i had my old 5.0L. Atleast my exhaust note coming out of my flowmasters sounded better.


Posted by: TNTGMC | Dec 13, 2018 12:20:13 PM

Can you ever, just one time, contribute something useful to a discussion? Just once clown? So the Raptor doesn't sound good to you, but it's faster than your slow 6.2L. Get over it. Jealous azz hole. This is an article about a Ranger and Tacoma. Get a grip and get a life.

GM is dead to America. For someone to even be hanging on to a welfare, out sourced, worst reliability manufacture is absolutely moronic at this point. Ford is about the only competition Toyota has in SUV and trucks. Honda in cars.



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