Ford in Thailand has today pulled the covers off a new-look Ranger designed to take the fight to the recharged Toyota HiLux, with a new look and new trim levels set to act as a final farewell to the current-generation workhorse.
Described as a "bold new look", the cosmetic changes largely focus on the front-end of the Ranger, with a new trapezoidal-shape grille on everything beneath the Raptor trim level.
The grille pairs with new black alloys and side mirrors, as well as black door handles on most trim levels.
The changes also usher in an all-new model, the XL Street, which adds sportier wheels, racing strips, red accents to the grille and a sportier-feeling cabin, but does not include any mechanical updates.
“Understanding our customers from the inside out enables Ford to deliver the right products and services that truly meet their needs," says Ford Thailand MD, Wichit Wongwattanakan.
"The new models with refreshed designs build on Ford’s growing popularity among Thais. This is also to offer vehicles that best reflect our customers’ individualities as we value their continued support for Ford brand."
Ford in Australia, though, is fairly unequivocal in their position on the Thai-special ute, insisting the changes - and the Street trim - are for the Thailand domestic market and not for Australia.
That said, we know the Ford Ranger FX-4 Max, due in Australia by the end of the year, will be sporting a new look of its own, and it's probable it will take at least some inspiration from the Thai grille.
"The Ranger announcements made in Thailand today are specific to that market," Ford Australia communications chief, Matt Moran, says.
"We have no plans introduce the Ford Ranger XL Street in Australia, we have recently expanded our Ranger XL offering with the new Ranger XL Special Edition and the option of an even more capable Heavy-Duty Pack that combines Heavy Duty Suspension and All-terrain tyre options.
"We have also recently announced a range of other updates to the Ranger line-up in Australia, including FordPass Connect embedded modem for easy connectivity across all Ranger variants...and the first ever Ford Ranger FX4 MAX which will make its Australian debut in late 2020, delivering customers a new factory-built, fully warranted Ranger with extended off-road capabilities inspired by Ranger Raptor."