I wonder if that was the predecessor to the SVT Lighting Bolt? I do like the Explorer front end on the Ranger. I noticed that right off that it was an Explorer grill.
I didn't realize they went with torsion bars on the rear though. I wonder if that was a chance in 98 for all Rangers or if that was specific to the SVT prototype. I do know 98 is when the front suspension ditched coils and went to torsion bars.
All-n-all, the things Ford could've done with the Ranger were all missed opportunities. Ford was so afraid of cutting into their F150 sales that they decided to let the Ranger languish and as of 2012, it's dead in the US and Canada...although it is still sold in some 188 other countries around the world. Ford supposedly killed it due to lack of sales even though last year, the Ranger out-sold the Mustang.
But why did the sales go down? Well...where to start?
- No V8 option.
- No 4-door Crew Cab option in the US and Canada although crew cabs are available in Mexico and other countries where the F150 isn't popular. Now even Nissan's small truck has a Crew Cab option here in the US.
- Absolutely crappy suspension compared to the Tacoma and Dakota, both of which have a V8 and Crew Cab options.
- Pathetic performance.
- Pathetic fuel economy. The 2011 F150 fullsize with the V6 Ecoboost engine got better fuel economy than the 2011 Ranger with the 4.0L V6.
89 Ranger Supercab, 331 w/GT40p heads, ported Explorer lower, Crane Powermax 2020 cam, 1.6RRs, FMS Explorer (GT40p) headers, Slot Style MAF, aftermarket T5 'Z-Spec', 8.8" rear w/3.27s, Powertrax Locker, Innovate LC-1, GUFB, Moates QuarterHorse tuned using BE&EA