Few American rivalries have a history as longstanding as that between Ford and GM, the two industrial behemoths of Detroit. These two marquees are engaged in a power struggle. The competition is particularly heated in the segment of workhorse pickup trucks.
Each company has options to compete with one another, whether it be full-sizers or heavy duties. And in the market for mid-size pickups, nothing has changed.
The more recent Ford Ranger keeps things simple (for now) with a single powertrain and a more contemporary interior, in contrast to Chevrolet’s tried-and-true Colorado, which is equipped with three powertrains, two transmission options, as well as a hard-core off-road ZR2 trim.
Both have advantages and disadvantages despite providing capabilities that are nearly at full-sizer levels. Which option should you choose, though? To assist you in actually making the ideal decision, we provide a thorough breakdown.
Colorado: The Colorado offers a choice of three different powertrains and two different gearboxes, in contrast to the Ranger, which we’ll discuss shortly. Only 200 horsepower and 191 lb-ft of torque are produced by the 2.5-liter four-pot standard on two-wheel-drive variants. All engines are offered in 2WD and 4WD models. However, the 2.5 with 4WD is only offered in extended cab versions.
The 3.6-liter V6 follows, producing a respectable 308 horsepower at its maximum and 275 lb-ft at its maximum torque. Only the V6 and the 2.8-liter diesel, which generates a meager 181 horsepower but a tremendous 369 lb-ft of peak torque, are offered with the crew cab with short and long boxes. When it comes to automatic transmissions, the 3.6-liter V6 is only offered with an eight-speed unit, while the diesel and gasoline four-cylinders are only offered with a six-speed unit.
Ranger: The Ranger, in contrast to the Colorado, has a single 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine that is paired with a similar 10-speed automatic transmission as its older sibling. It has both 2WD and 4WD and produces 290 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of peak torque.
If the Ford has the tow package, it can outhaul the Colorado despite having a solitary powertrain. Additionally, Colorado provides its consumers with a diesel choice, despite the price. Additionally, you also get a tremendous amount of torque.
Colorado: Oddly, despite the Colorado’s gasoline engines’ different capacities, their fuel economy ratings are surprisingly comparable. For the 2WD model, the 2.5-liter four-pot manages to achieve 19 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. The city figure is unaffected in the 4WD variants. However, the highway efficiency is reduced by one mpg.
With 2WD, the V6 achieves 18 city mileage and 25 highway mpg, and with 4WD, 17 and 24 mpg. However, the diesel is the best option if you want the most efficient engine. On the interstate, it gets 30 mpg, while in the city, it gets 20 mpg. The value decreases to 19 and 28 mpg while using 4WD. Finally, the sole 4WD-equipped ZR2 performance trims achieve 18 and 22 mpg with the diesel and a pitiful 16 and 18 mpg with the 3.6 V6. For obvious reasons, there is no 2.5 on ZR2 trims.
Ranger: The 2WD Ranger can achieve an overall fuel economy of 23 mpg, or 21 mpg, in the city while 26 mpg on the highway. Rangers with 4WD are predicted to achieve a combined 22 mpg, or 20 mpg, in the city and 24 mpg on the interstate.
The Ranger easily outperforms the Colorado when compared on a gasoline-to-gasoline basis. However, the Colorado’s diesel engine is significantly more efficient than either truck’s gasoline engine, making the Chevy the clear victor in this comparison.
Colorado: Because the truck is a mid-size one, the inside cabin area is also a mid-size one. You would have to get the crew cab if you wanted to have any chance of accommodating adults in the back. It provides a good 38.3 inches (973 mm) of headroom in the back and 41.4 inches (1,051 mm) in the front, which should be plenty even for those who are considerably larger than average.
In terms of legroom, the front offers a respectable 45 inches (1,143 mm) of space, but the back only provides 35.8 inches (909 mm), which would be, at most, enough for persons of average size. The extended cab, however, only manages to provide 28.6 inches (726 mm) of legroom in the back. It is essential to remember that the wheelbase has no effect on the cabin space and only affects the overall length of the rear bed.
Ranger: Like the Colorado, Ford’s mid-size pickup’s interior space is little to brag about. The maximum headroom up front is 39.8 inches (1,011 mm). The rear headroom in the SuperCrew cab is 38.3 inches (973 mm), but it is only 35.9 inches in the SuperCab (912 mm).
If you have passengers, they will have trouble fitting in the rear of the SuperCab unless they come from the Shire. Anyone with an above-average physique is likely to experience restricted in SuperCrew as well.
Ranger provides lots of legroom in the front with a length of 43.1 inches (1,095 mm), but in the back, the CrewCab only has 34.5 inches (876 mm) while the SuperCab only has 30.4 inches (772 mm).
It’s important to note that, in terms of length and wheelbase, the Ranger is actually a few inches shorter than the Colorado. However, it still manages to provide almost as much capacity in the SuperCrew’s rear bench and nearly two more inches in the SuperCab, making it the undisputed winner.
Cargo and Towing
Colorado: Given that there are no foldable seats available for extra luggage, you are just provided with a bed. The long box, which is available with either extended or crew cab configurations, offers a maximum cargo capacity of 49.9 cu-ft, while the short box can only hold 41.3 cu-ft (1,169 liters) of luggage (1,327liters). The maximum towing capacity for Chevy’s mid-sizer is 7,000 lbs (3,175 kg).
Ranger: The Ranger, like the Chevrolet, has two different bed sizes. It provides 51.8 cu. ft. and 43.3 (1,225 liters). Additionally, it is capable of towing 500 pounds (226 kg), larger than Colorado.
Despite being the smaller truck, the Ranger offers a little bit more cargo space than its Detroit rival. That’s also fantastic because it can tow more. Oh, and it’s the winner here as well.
Tech and Features
Colorado: The base WT or “Work Truck” model from Chevrolet comes equipped with a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system. However, standard equipment includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as a four-way power-adjustable driver’s seat. Automatic climate control is optional on the LT trim, standard on Z71 and later models, and completely absent on the base WT model.
A six-way power-adjustable driver’s seat is standard on trims LT and higher. However, only the ZR2 trim offers a four-way power-adjustable passenger seat. Every trim, with the exception of the WT, has a larger eight-inch touchscreen and is Wi-Fi-capable. The Z71 and the ZR2 are the best options if you require a 4.2-inch digital screen with the instrument cluster.
Ranger: The basic Ranger XL is, well, rather basic, to be honest. There is no touchscreen present; instead, there is a 2.3-inch “productivity screen” that may date from the late 2000s. Although 4G Wi-Fi is a standard feature, upgrading to the SYNC 3 system will cost you money—exactly $3,225. Additionally, it will include an appearance package in the mix.
Ford Co-Pilot360 cruise control, SYNC3, and the climate control, which is an option on the base XL trim, are all included in the standard kit starting with the XLT trim. The XLT will cost you $2,450 extra if you desire power-adjustable driver and passenger seats. The Lariat trim, which is at the top of the list, has the majority of bells and whistles but requires an additional fee for the Trailer Tow package (7,500 lbs of towing capacity) and the B&O sound system.
If you’re ready to pay for it, the Ford delivers a more feature-rich package. In our opinion, the SYNC3 system ought to have been standard. Additionally, the Colorado comes equipped with a touchscreen as standard, whilst the Ford only has one in the base model, losing out to the Chevy for first place.
Chevy Colorado vs. Ford Ranger Verdict
Considering that each vehicle has its advantages and disadvantages, the Ford Ranger and Chevrolet Colorado are evenly matched. However, while being shorter in length, the Ranger appears to be more capable, has more interior space, and is capable of towing heavier objects.
Compared to the Colorado, you do get greater basic safety features, even though the increased towing capacity and the finer interior come at a price. In comparison to the Chevrolet, it is also more affordable. The Ford Ranger is, at least on paper, the best option unless you want a diesel or an off-road monster of a mid-sizer (for now).