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Detroit's impressed: How the Australian engineering and design ingenuity behind the world-class Ford Ranger and Everest has been noticed... and what it will lead to next

All the T6.2 Ranger-based models that Ford Australia developed – including Bronco and Everest – are stars in Detroit's eyes.

Ford Australia believes that it has succeeded in creating the best medium-sized pick-up trucks as well as body-on-frame SUVs on sale anywhere in the world thanks to the new Ranger, Everest and (not-for-Australia for now) Bronco... and Ford’s top management in America know it.

Exceeding the expectations from top executives at Dearborn in Detroit, the result also paves the way for further design and engineering projects for the Melbourne-based personnel, including coming variations based on the T6.2, as well as work on other secret new models in the future.

Speaking to CarsGuide late last month, Detroit-based Ford Performance Chief Engineer, Carl Widmann, revealed that the reputation and experience of the Ford Australia team behind the T6.2 project should hold them in good stead for years to come.

“All of them are tremendously talented who work in this space and with the parts they have,” he told the Australian media in late March, during a flying visit to check up on the progress of the T6.2 Raptor as well as other global Ford Performance products that Ford team in Australia are helping to bring to market worldwide.

“It creates the next generation… we know it will have a third generation of this product, a fourth generation of another one, a second generation of yet another one.

“We’ve all been very focused on doing three totally different vehicles in a 12-month timeframe, and there is a massive amount of learning that is shared.”

Ford Australia chief engineer, Ian Foston, agrees, adding that his team’s know-how and drive has helped shape a world-class line of hugely-different vehicles out of the T6.2’s Australian homeroom offering exceptional flexibility and versatility for the broadest-possible spectrum of consumer needs across the globe.

“The bandwidth of how we’ve set the platform up is really testament to the confidence that the US Ford leadership team has in the work that has been done here in Australia,” he told CarsGuide late last month.

“We’re catering from what we classify as our lowest-cost of ownership customers with a Ranger that can do all the work things it needs to do, all the way up to what we’re now seeing is a more car-like luxurious experience, both in the Ranger and Everest in our high-end vehicles like the Wildtrak and Platinum (respectively).

“Plus, we’ve gone the other way as well in the performance side – so the fun side, the play side, with the Ford Performance Ranger Raptor.”

Mr Foston added that the T6.2 teams’ success in achieving their goals is particularly noteworthy given the limited resources on offer during times of unprecedented challenges, particularly over the past two years, some at which came at significant personal sacrifices during times of extremely difficult restrictions.

“The thing I am most proud of, the bit I want to make really clear, is that we’ve done all this off of one platform with all of our bandwidth of capability,” he explained.

“And coupled with the kind of technology we’ve put in there with the centre screen and cluster, and Raptor comes with all of the driver-assist technology that all of the Ford products are getting… like adaptive cruise control… we’re offering a no-compromise vehicle.

“(Looking at the Raptor as an example), that is a vehicle that you can drive across the desert, as well as having all the technology available to take you to the desert and then after get you back safely.”