In the midsize pickup truck market, what’s old is new again. Whether it be the Ranger, Gladiator or Colorado, each is a name that left the market and re-emerged as something all-new.
And since the Gladiator isn’t here just yet, we took the two midsizers currently on sale from the US brands, in this case, a Ranger XLT FX4 and a GMC Canyon All-Terrain and compared them.
Our Canyon was fit with the most popular engine found under the hood of the GM twins (GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado), a 3.6-liter V6 that makes 308 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque, sent through an eight-speed automatic transmission. This is one of three different engines available for the GM twins, while the Ranger offers a sole choice, a 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder that makes 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Ford hooks a ten-speed automatic in the Ranger.
When it comes to off-road packaging, the FX4 comes away looking like the better package. First of all, every FX4 Ranger has its front plastic air dam removed, a necessary step to increase what is a low approach angle. With it gone, the Ranger gets a 28.7 degree approach angle, while the Canyon gets just 17.7 degrees of approach. Ground clearance in the Canyon is also lacking at 8.2-inches compared to 8.9-inches in the Ranger.
Driving these two trucks immediately reveals the differences. The Ranger feels like the heavier truck thanks to heavy steering and more body roll through the corners, and it is the heavier vehicle on paper too. The Canyon tips the scales at 1462 pounds in 4×4 Crew Cab trim, while the Ranger weighs in at 4440 pounds. The Canyon has a comfortable way of loping down the road that the Ranger can’t quite match.
In the power department, the Ranger certainly feels like the quicker truck with a strong punch of turbo torque and horsepower that comes on lower in the rev range than the Canyon’s naturally aspirated V6.
Looking inside the two, the GMC comes across looking nicer, with less hard black plastics everywhere and more soft touch surfaces. The driving positions in the two trucks is also a stark difference, with the Canyon feeling like you sit quite low in it, while the Ranger has a higher seating position that offers better visibility around the truck.
Lots of other factors come into play when looking at these two pickups side-by-side, so you’ll have to watch the video embedded above to see which truck we picked at the end.