New Models

The new Ford Ranger ute and Everest four-wheel-drive are in line for plug-in hybrid tech in 2024, according to new information sourced by Drive – and they appear to be on their way to Australia.

Above and below: One take on how a Ford Ranger plug-in hybrid might look.

The new-generation Ford Ranger ute and Ford Everest four-wheel-drive appear on track to gain plug-in hybrid options in 2024, according to new information sourced by Drive – and they’re in line for Australian showrooms.

Publicly-available information unearthed by Drive indicates plug-in hybrid (PHEV) versions of the new Ford Ranger ute and Everest SUV are in development – rather than ‘self-charging’ hybrid or all-electric options – and are slated to launch in late 2023, or in 2024.

Furthermore, the information suggests both the new Ranger and Everest PHEVs are slated to be offered in Australia – arriving in Ford showrooms as 2024 model-year vehicles – making them some of the first electrified offerings in their respective ute and large 4WD segments.

A hybrid version of the Toyota HiLux is not expected to arrive before the next-generation model launches around the middle of the decade, while rivals from Isuzu/Mazda, Nissan and even Ford’s development partner for the new Ranger, Volkswagen, have not announced firm plans for the introduction of hybrid dual-cab utes.

Specifics of the plug-in hybrid Ranger and Everest’s engine and electric motor combination are yet to be announced – and it’s not clear if a petrol or diesel engine will sit underneath the PHEV’s bonnet.

However, given the popularity of petrol over diesel fuel in plug-in hybrid systems globally – and shifting tastes away from diesel in Europe (and non-existent diesel demand in the US) – there is well-placed speculation a petrol engine will power future Ranger and Everest plug-in hybrid models – which will be sold alongside the range of diesel-only offerings.

Given the 167kW 2.5-litre four-cylinder PHEV system in the Escape medium SUV would likely be considered insufficient, and the 336kW 3.0-litre turbo V6 system in the overseas Explorer large SUV too potent, Ford could strike a balance in the Ranger and Everest with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine.

Above: 2022 Ford Everest renders.

The new Ford Ranger will be offered in the US and other overseas markets with a 2.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, expected to develop approximately (or in excess of) 200kW and 420Nm – a suitable fit for a potent petrol plug-in hybrid system.

With the assistance of an electric motor and battery pack, these figures could swell beyond 250kW – outgunning the circa-190kW diesel V6 that’s set to sit atop the standard Ranger and Everest line-ups in Australia when the new models launch later this year (excluding the Ranger Raptor).

News of Ford Ranger and Ford Everest plug-in hybrids for 2024 follows comments late last year from the engineers that developed the models, with one confirming to media: “We have enabled electrification in the platform.

“We’re not going to talk about that in any more detail right now … and when they’re available. 

“But, you know, electrification … globally is coming and it’s a global pick-up, so we have many, many customer needs and we have to satisfy those needs.”

Above: 2022 Ford Ranger diesel.

Chief engineer of the Ford Ranger, Everest and Volkswagen Amarok’s T6 platform, Ian Foston, told Australian media: “Certainly we’ve spoken to customers all around the world and there’s clearly two big drivers for electrification [including hybrid technology].

“One is through customers who’ve often had ownership experiences in electric vehicles of some variety. And they’re asking about when will pick-ups be available with that technology.

“And there’s also legislative requirements that have been applied in a number of markets around the world. So clearly there’s a big future for [hybrid and electric vehicles] in every segment, trucks being one of them as well.”

The new Ford Ranger and Ford Everest plug-in hybrids are slated to launch in Australia as Model Year 2024 vehicles, suggesting first arrivals in local showrooms in late 2023, or sometime in 2024.

Conventional diesel-powered versions of the new Ford Ranger are due in showrooms in mid-2022, with the Everest slated to follow by the end of the year.

Alex Misoyannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

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