Growing up in a conservative Indian home in a small town in KwaZulu-Natal will give you stories. There’s a book I could and should write about it. It’s great content. It won’t be a thriller but it’ll definitely be a page-turner.
There are many, many, things a conservative Hindu girl-child would not be allowed to do. Driving big, bulky vehicles would be right up there, because what good Indian girl does that? Let’s remember this was not a woke time in my life, it was the 80’s – when a flying shoe would resolve the conundrum of whether you had a voice or a choice.
It was also the exact same time the Ford Ranger pick-up was added to the production line to compete with what the Japanese manufacturers were putting out in the market.
AIN’T NO MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH
Fast forward my career, and I’ve made a job out of climbing mountains in bulky cars. Break the mould they said – so I did! A Ford Ranger is how far an Indian girl from a small town, with a dream of driving big cars and being admired for her courage to make that dream a reality, has come.
Back in the 80s, Ford was serious about establishing a market for the pick-up segment and the first generation ranger then would set you back anything from $9 000 – $11 284 (R127 000 – R160 328). Even in the 80s that was a pretty steep price.
Time hop another 38 years and the Ford Ranger is still dominating our highways and byways, and has become an icon in its segment. It’s also a new dawn for the woman adventurer who can conquer just about every mountain you throw at us, with the help of Hill Launch Assist and Gain Hill Decent Control, of course.
The exhilaration of skilfully manoeuvring Ford’s 2.2-litre turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine over rocks and through ditches while pushing out 118kW of power and 385Nm of torque is a feeling that can only be felt in that driver’s seat. It’s an adrenaline rush to tether close to the edge of a mountain pass and steer yourself down with ease.
Ford Ranger XL Sport features
The Ford Ranger XL Sport is a vanity project, and why not – we all want to look like an upgrade regardless of what’s under the bonnet. It’s tough, robust, and dare I say – sexy! For a woman with a family, a double-cab is always a bonus – comfort comes standard, along with bluetooth connectivity and charging ports. It comes packaged with new sport decals – alloy wheels, a slick black grille, a sports bar that demands attention, and side steps to give you that extra lunge to get in.
Other features include:
- ABS Brakes (ABS)
- Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)
- Electronic Stability Programme with Traction Control (ESP)
- Hill Launch Assist (HLA)
- Roll-over Mitigation
- Adaptive Load Control and Trailer Sway Control
- Gain Hill Decent Control (HDC) 4×4 models
- Rear diff-lock fitted as standard on all 4×2/4×4 models
- Tow Bar
- Dual front airbags
- ISOFIX child seat mounting points on double cab models
- Remote-controlled central locking.
- Immobiliser and an alarm system
It is easy to get to grips with the functionality of the vehicle and a 6 gear automatic transmission means anyone can get behind the wheel. With the women of today breaking just about every mould we’ve been tucked neatly into, I think the Ford Ranger XL Sport fits that persona – or rather breaks out – imperfectly perfect!