Before I was a Hatchtopian, I was a Ford Ranger fan. From their intro in 1983 to the time I learned to drive in a beast of an F150 (1978 4wd with the 400 ci engine), I always thought the Ranger was “right-sized.” It was a blocky looking thing to start, then matured into a 90s blob with the rest of us, but in the end, it was a long-in-the tooth relic from a bygone age. An age where a “truck-like ride” wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. Where 4 doors were for grocery-getting sedans. And where V6s that returned 20 mpg were strictly the realm of the small pickup.
Personally, I owned two Ford Rangers and know at least a dozen people who’ve owned one at one point or another. Likely for similar reasons: cost of ownership, reliability and size.
Unfortunately for the Ranger, it’s now the
90s Aughts 2010s, and someone much smarter than I has made the decision that the last American-made Ranger has run off the assembly line into the unknown. And while this dead horse has been well-beaten to some, this Hoon-worthy truck deserves one last tribute. Fortunately for us, the good people over at happywrenching.com have posted the following beautifully-produced video on the Tubes of You.
Lacking a single word, the melancholy music score fits the sad occasion of the final Ranger’s day on the production line, while the workers in the video all appear to be happy or at least content with their next step in life. Despite the fact that the Ranger is dead, the people certainly aren’t. Who knows where they will end up – at another Ford job, another manufacturing line or the unemployment line. Their future is at least brighter than that of the compact pickup in this country.
Godspeed, Ford Ranger
Ray Lindenburg is an Associate Editor with Hooniverse.com, but he also contributes to his own site Hatchtopia.com. Head over there for all things hatchback.
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