Ford Ranger to buy or not to buy?



I am considering buying a late [2006-2007] Ford Ranger and am soliciting advise and recommendations.

I am most interested in a 4cyl supercab XLT however am open to anything up to 6cyl 3.0.

Are these a good reliable truck and what are the long term maintenance issues?

What is the gas mileage 4cyl v 6cyl

manual v automatic esp. 2.4l auto v 3.0l


this would be a non heavy work truck used mostly for camping and other recreational uses.

On average how much mileage, long term should be expected from these engines…

100K+…150K+ or more.

How long should a clutch/auto transmission last?

Thanks in advance



The Rangers have been pretty good trucks and I haven’t heard of Ford doing anything major to them so I’d assume this is still the case. Maintenance costs and long-term reliability are probably pretty comparable across the board relative to other smaller trucks. Look at to see what the MPG ratings are on Rangers in various configurations-- another big question you’ll need to ask yourself is if you need 4wd, since that makes a pretty big difference.

Clutch life depends on how much city driving you do and general driver skill. An automatic should theoretically last the life of the vehicle, and if properly serviced is likely to do so, but past 150k or so a failure becomes more probable. Newer automatics are much better, though, so you might even extend that to 200k+.


The mileage difference is fairly close. I think the rwd gives about 21/26 and 19/24 for 4cyl with manual/automatic and v6 gives 16/22 and 15/20 man/auto. Not much difference, and if you plan on towing anything, you’d be better off getting the v6 with automatic and a transmission cooler


Check out fuel economy here:

Click on the year then manufacturer, then the model and you’ll get the up to date info.


They are great little trucks. I very much like mine. I have a 4cyl with the manual tranny. Babying it on the highway and I get 30ish mpg, and I average around 25 in mixed driving, granted I don’t live in a large city. I do have the regular cab, so you can expect to get a little less because of the extra weight from a super cab.

I have two friends with the 3L 6cyl, 1 auto and 1 manual, and one friend who had a 4L auto as well. Both the 4L and the 3L got nearly the same mpg averaging around 18 mpg. The 4L was the more responsive motor out of the two and would be worth getting if you really want a 6cyl. If you choose the 4 cyl, I would advise the manual trans; the 2.3 with an auto felt a little sluggish to me. Just to let you know, my friends with the 6cyl Rangers were wishing they had mine (one offered to trade his nicer vehicle) with the price of gas lately.

Along those same lines, unless you really, really need it (95% of the people who have 4wd or AWD do NOT need it) skip it and go for the two wheel drive. Buy a set of snow tires and put a few tubes of sand in the bed and you will be cruising past 4/AWD vehicles who slid into a ditch during the winter time.

The 4cyl with the manual, that I have, has not given me any problems. I have been hauling 2 and a half yard of mulch with it over the last couple of days and just have to slow down a little and down shift when I was running up steep hills. For regular daily driving, you won’t notice a difference between it and the 3L.

As for regular servicing, almost everything on it can be worked on with a small assortment of sockets, a C-clamp, a couple of torx and hex bits and a standard and phillips screwdriver. The only thing I had a slight problem with was reaching 2 of the spark plugs, which are located behind the intake manifold (the 4cyl has 8 spark plugs). I have not needed to change the clutch on mine yet (~70k), but have helped do one on a friend’s that went out at 110k. Once again it was a pretty easy job. Because just about everything can be easily done and these vehicles have not changed much over the years, they are very cheap to maintain.


They’re good trucks and usually go forever. I would probably take the V-6 over the 4. The mileage is not much different and that extra pull power could come in handy sometimes, especially if you’re going camping out in the boondocks or in hilly terrain.

A friend of my son has an '01 Ranger and I think he’s got about 200k for the most part trouble free miles on it. He hauls a lot of stuff with it to boot (16 foot trailer with ATVS on 100 mile trips to the sand dunes, etc.) and considering his rough driving habits his 200k is probably equivalent to 400k miles.

The clutch life depends on the user and the life of an auto transmission can be heavily influenced by how regular the fluid changes are. They should be done every 30k miles IMHO.
If you really want some cheap transmission insurance install an inexpensive auto transmission fluid cooler. These can be had for about 75 bucks or less, they’re easy to install, and worth their weight in gold. Best part is they can be removed and kept for your next vehicle if you decide to get rid of the Ranger later on.


Thank you everyone for replying. All good information and feel comfortable looking for a ranger now after your replies.

Thank you all


The 4cylinder gets into the mid - upper 20’s believe it or not with manual tranny and 2wd. Given fuel prices and your requirements it may be a great fit.


One of the best vehicles I ever owned. I had the 4 cyl (8 spark plug) engine w man trans and short bed. Mine was a Mazda B truck but it’s the same thing; it’s really a Ranger in disguise. These little trucks perform well and have a really good reputation and hold value. If I need a small truck ever again it will be a used Ranger (or, Mazda B truck, if I can find one). Good luck.


I’m a newer Tacoma owner of an older '95 with 222K miles. If you don’t want 4 wheel drive option I can’t argue with the experience posted. But when I was shopping I don’t remember domestics offering 4x4 with 4 cylinders. The Tacoma is a 2.7 L 4 cyl with 4x4 option and low gear tranfer case. Mine is extended cab, manual, fiberglass topper, a couple hundred pounds of tools always in the back and I get 18-20 mpg around town in rural area, 22-24 on the highway, all that in 2 wheel. In 4x4 subrtract 2 mpg. As often as I have my pedal to the floor climbing hills hauling weight it’s hard to imagine getting much work done with less than 2.5 L. Not having extended cab will help but I couldn’t live without X-cab. Need somewhere dry to keep stuff.