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Topic: Set up a Ford Ranger

Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/02/11 04:05am

Looking to buy a 2011 Ranger....getting a stick shift is almost impossible....and Remco says they are not making driveshaft disconnects any more....at least for the near future. So...a 2WD automatic is out.
That leaves me only a 4 WD automatic.
My understanding is a dealer must install a computer chip in the transmission? And how is the pickup setup as far as gear selector and the transfer case?

Any info appreciated.


Posted By: Captain_Happy on 07/02/11 05:16am

So your saying Ford doesn't make the Ranger with manual tranny's any more. I bought ours in 2010, 2 wheel drive, with the manual tranny, so far no problems towing it. My brother has the automatic tranny setup, and to date he's had 2 of the remco lube oil pumps go bad, and 1 brake buddy unit. That's way I went with the manual tranny setup. Keep looking, they've got to out there somewhere. get your Ford dealer to locate one in the Ford network. There's got to be one out there somewhere. Good luck.


Posted By: blackf3504dr on 07/02/11 05:27am

I'm not sure about the Ranger, but Ford (and GM) are discontinuing the standard trans in the full size pick ups.


Mom , Dad , Scooter & K.C ( killer cat )
'96 F350 4dr. Dually, 7.3 5sp.
'92 Holiday Rambler 34'
REAL TRUCKS DON'T HAVE SPARKPLUGS !


Posted By: OldF**t on 07/02/11 07:25am

You might have better luck posting your question in the Dinghy Forum. That being said the 2010 and older Ranger 4WD autos are towable if the vehicle's ECM is modified by the dealer to enable a neutral tow option. This enables you to put the electronic transfer case in a 'neutral' position for towing. Additionally a led indicator is added to indicate that the transfer case is in neutral. The big problem is that Ford no longer offers this option so you are stuck. If you can find a dealer who will do the software modification then you can easily add the 12v led yourself. Most dealers won't just do the modification claiming that they don't want the liability if you trash your tranny.


Jim

2004 Hurricane 32R (F53)
Demco Excalibar
2010 Ford Ranger 4X4
2009 Kymco Xciting 500Ri
1 wife and 6 cats



Posted By: trvlnsgt on 07/02/11 03:40pm

I have a suggestion you might consider....I tow an '02 Ranger,xtra cab, manual trans., 4WD, set up just the way I want it. It's primary purpose in life is being a TOAD, so at 9 yrs olod it has only 69,000 actual road miles on it. Keeping a Ranger in absolute tip top shape is easy and inexpensive, and if you get a good one they are versatile and dependable. My suggestion is to look around for the cleanest, most mechanically sound used Ranger you can find. Go thru it front to back, covering all maint. issues, add your tow equiptment, and you are good to go.


'06 Rexhall 39' Rose Air T-Rex,Cummins ISL 400.
'02 Ford Ranger 4x4 and a Perception sea kayak.
ALWAYS paddle away from the rocks.


Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/19/11 10:38am

Being the OP here....my problem of setting up a Ford Ranger for towing is solved.
Right now, a stick shift, altho listed as "stock"...for all practical purposes has to be almost "special ordered". So...almost NO availability. The 2WD Ranger that I preferred....no more driveshaft disconnects...at least for the near future...if at all. Another poster is correct about the company's public relations: they stink. I called them...left a message: no response. I e-mailed them....no response.

So....on 7/5/11 I purchased and took delivery of a 2011 Ranger XLT 4WD. Last Thursday got a call....the "neutral transfer" part came in (#3L2Z-7H332-AA)....and just this morning, the dealer installed it. Unlike the older 4WDs, this is not mechanical. Completely electronic. Installation: 2 hours. I was told that the "transfer case computer" had to be reprogrammed.....(and that there are FIVE computers on this pickup). Total price, installed: $469. A rip-off? Overpriced? More than likely. But...if you want it, it's a Ford only item.
There is nothing mechanical to do...just follow the instructions and a small orange light bulb goes on to tell you the transfer case is in "neutral". One hopes this light bulb knows what it's talking about....there is no other way to find out. Warranty is 12 months.


Posted By: JohnnyT on 07/19/11 10:57am

Moved from class A forum


Posted By: dcbrewer on 07/19/11 11:21am

It shows 2 options for ford ranger tranmisson, 5 sp auto with overdrive and 5 sp manual with overdrive, that is in 2011.


Posted By: loydt on 07/19/11 07:10pm

crap.. I was about to buy a nice looking 2wd sport edition with the auto tranny. The dealer says thay have some kind of drive shaft disconnect they can sell me?


2006 Monaco Camelot 40PDQ, Cummins 400 ISL, 2012 Itasca Ellipse 42QD, Cummins 450


Posted By: Loren Ross on 07/19/11 11:37pm

jerseyjim wrote:

Being the OP here....my problem of setting up a Ford Ranger for towing is solved.
Right now, a stick shift, altho listed as "stock"...for all practical purposes has to be almost "special ordered". So...almost NO availability. The 2WD Ranger that I preferred....no more driveshaft disconnects...at least for the near future...if at all. Another poster is correct about the company's public relations: they stink. I called them...left a message: no response. I e-mailed them....no response.

So....on 7/5/11 I purchased and took delivery of a 2011 Ranger XLT 4WD. Last Thursday got a call....the "neutral transfer" part came in (#3L2Z-7H332-AA)....and just this morning, the dealer installed it. Unlike the older 4WDs, this is not mechanical. Completely electronic. Installation: 2 hours. I was told that the "transfer case computer" had to be reprogrammed.....(and that there are FIVE computers on this pickup). Total price, installed: $469. A rip-off? Overpriced? More than likely. But...if you want it, it's a Ford only item.
There is nothing mechanical to do...just follow the instructions and a small orange light bulb goes on to tell you the transfer case is in "neutral". One hopes this light bulb knows what it's talking about....there is no other way to find out. Warranty is 12 months.

Congratulations on getting Ford to do this for you. I had to jump through so many hoops to get the NTK for my 2008 Sport Trac, and in the end I had to make my own. Fortunately, it only cost me $12 and I found a dealer who programmed my ECM for only $67. Wish I could have helped you save some dollars.


Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/20/11 05:15pm

LOREN ROSS: Did I get that right? A Ford dealer refused to sell you (and install) a Ford (only) item? Sounds like a lazy dealer.....or one that just doesn't care. Can't imagine that. Like back in the 1980s I wanted a Crown Victoria with a "towing package"...I know they have (had it) because Ford advertised it. One dealer wanted nothing to do with it....all he tried to do was sell me what he had on the lot...and none of them had the towing package. The other dealer....no problem. They didn't have a car with my specs...but they had no problem ordering one. THAT is the dealer I return to...and the dealer that I purchased this new Ranger from. Unfortunately for your location this guy is a local dealer, (in New Jersey) a big one, too. Wonder why......you made your own for $12...and found someone who could do the re-programming for 67? Great. But I'm kinda like a hammer and chisel man....electronics baffle me. Oh, well......

LOYDT: the 5 spd stick is the best...easiest to work with. Unfortunately, as I found out, it's almost a special order....when I requested a XLT package with an extended cab. One WAS scheduled to arrive in late August....and in silver. I didn't want to wait...and don't like silver. So, there it is.
The 2WD with the automatic tranny was really my first choice. DOES Ford have some kind of driveshaft disconnect? I never heard of one....get that dealer to give you specifics. If in doubt...don't do it. REMCO, as far as I ever knew, was the only company to make a proven disconnect. Many many people use them, most without any problems. But REMCO sold that part of the business to someone else...and if you google "driveshaft disonnects" you will find the REMCO website and click on "disconnects" and the whole story is there. I guessed not for the near future. So...with Ford, the 4WD is the only option. It's more money, you do lose a couple hundred pounds of "payload" and I was surprised how heavy the "small" truck is: 5240 pounds! But..there it is. And I'm happy. This truck, with any luck, will last me a long long time. Rangers have an excellent durability reputation. It might even outlast me!
Next step, in September is to install a baseplate. BlueOX makes one (BX 2195) that is exactly the same as their model for our current toad...our 2007 Chevy HHR, so, for the towbar (Falcon) no mods are needed.


Posted By: Loren Ross on 07/20/11 10:54pm

Jersey Jim: NO, Ford didn't refuse to sell me the kit, the company that made the kits for Ford went out of business and Ford couldn't get the kits anymore. Ford didn't maintain any stock, they just shipped directly from the vendor when one was ordered. I spent weeks online and on the phone calling dealers all over the country and couldn't locate a single one. Finally, a service manager in Texas offered to help, and Emailed me the PDF installation instructions from his personal records. With that, I discovered how to build one and install it for only $12. Since that time, I've been sharing the PDF's with anyone who needed them for FREE. I still will!! Especially now that the company who makes them is back in business and is selling the kits for $250.00.....


Posted By: randco on 07/21/11 03:07am

Take a look at the information shown on the Remco site.


Posted By: OldF**t on 07/21/11 10:11am

$250 for the "kit" is an absolute ripoff. Just a small bracket with an led lamp. When I bought my truck I got the same story that the "kit" was unavailable. I asked the dealer to reprogram the ecm for neutral towing or it was a no sale. They did and just put a disclaimer on the service ticket. I picked up a 12v led in the auto store, fabricated a bracket for it, and hooked it up to the existing plug under the dash. That's all that is involved with the "neutral tow kit".


Posted By: jerseyjim on 10/18/11 11:18am

Well...here it is, October. And I finally got my first chance to tow my Ranger...and use the "transfer case neutral switch kit".
Following the directions ( put tranny in neutral,keep key in switch, turn to "off"...step on brake for 5 seconds....the orange light will come on (to let you know the transfer case is in neutral...ready to tow).
OK. I did, the light comes on. BUT...should the light STAY ON....or like the dome light...goes off after a certain amount of time (to save the battery)?
The light goes off. I open the door...the light goes back on. Then, after a time, the light goes off again.
I called the dealer...he really is not familiar with the product (even after he installed it....) so I e-mailed Ford "Customer Service"...must be some kinda joke...they referred me back to the dealer....claiming they have no "technical information". (Wouldn't y'think Ford "Customer Service" would be able to do more than take complaints or complements?)
They sure won't get either from me.......


Posted By: OldF**t on 10/18/11 02:21pm

Mine works the same way on my 2010 Ranger. Did yours tow ok?


Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/21/11 04:36pm

LOREN ROSS: I would have loved to download your program....alas...it's 3 weeks to late.

RANDCO: Just went to the REMCO site...nothing at all mentioned about the driveshaft disconnects....there was 3 weeks ago....I guess REMCO is absolutely finished with these disconnects...oh, well....stick shifts or 4WD is it if you want to buy a Ford and outfit it to "toad"....

OLDF**T: Yep...seeing the "kit" before it was installed....I exclaimed "250 bucks for this?????" The service writer simply shrugged. Which is exactly what I would have done if he were me and I were him. Oh, well...I got what I want, I know I got ripped...but there it is!

See you guys on the road!


Posted By: loydt on 07/21/11 08:06pm

The Ford kit doesnt exist from Remco per their web site. They could not find what I wanted either so I ended up ordering one. Got the Sport 4 door model with the 5 speed manual. What I dont like is that I have to wait 8 -10 weeks for it to come in. UGH!


Posted By: Loren Ross on 07/23/11 11:25pm

loydt wrote:

The Ford kit doesnt exist from Remco per their web site. They could not find what I wanted either so I ended up ordering one. Got the Sport 4 door model with the 5 speed manual. What I dont like is that I have to wait 8 -10 weeks for it to come in. UGH!

LoydT: What is it you had to order, and why would you think Remco would carry Ford parts? The Ford Neutral Tow Kit is only for use in 4WD vehicles with the electric transfer case. If you have a 2WD and a manual transmission, you probably don't need anything done to tow it, unless you might need a Lube Pump installed. Tell me more about your vehicle so I can see if I have the Neutral Tow Kit for your vehicle. Year, Model, Engine Size, and confirm that it is 4WD and not AWD.
Loren


Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/24/11 04:35am

LOREN ROSS: I think there is "word confusion" here. The 2WD automatic transmission Ford (Ranger) needs either a driveshaft disconnect OR the transmission lube pump. To tow this vehicle without either one definately invites a BIG $$$ tranny job.
My first (automatic) choice would have been the 2WD Ranger. With the REMCO driveshaft disconnect. No more disconnects? I had to move on to something else. I am NOT interested in the lube pump...at all. Drilling and tapping holes in the truck to pass the oil around....simply invites oil leaks. And...pump failure is not unknown. While many people have and use these pump successfully, It definately not for me.
LOYDT, if not able to get a disconnect...DEFINATELY needs a lube pump IF he wants to stay with the 2WD automatic. But...he's getting a 5 spd manual....so all he needs is a baseplate.


Posted By: loydt on 07/24/11 07:37am

My choice was a 5 speed manual because like the above poster says, all I need is a baseplate. The new Ford Rangers that are 2wd with the auto tranny cannot be towed 4 down. I searched the internet looking for a kit because they had one there on the lot I almost bought. Nobody makes it, not even Remco. The dealership also acknowledged this once I went up there and talked to the guy in parts. So, I went ahead and ordered me the truck I want. Its a 5 speed so all I need is that baseplate. A 4wd is out due to the bad gas mileage it gets


Posted By: tatest on 07/27/11 06:18pm

Whether or not a manual transmission in the Ranger is "special order" has little to do with Ford, everything to do with what that particular dealer chooses to stock, or dealers collectively in that market region choose to stock. "Special order" is dealer-speak for he doesn't want it on his lot and will get it for you only if you contract to pay for it when it comes in.

Even if the dealer doesn't have what you want on the lot, he should be able to find it at another dealer, selling from regional stock. Some dealers don't like to do this, it cuts their margin a bit. Some salesmen don't like to say "I can find you one" because their sales manager cuts their commission if they don't sell from what is on the lot. I would rather take the lower commission, than have you walk away, and I get nothing.

My local Ford dealer keeps 2-3 manual transmission Rangers in stock, at least one four cylinder and some V-6s. He sells a several dozen a year. But the rural midwest is a different truck market.


Tom Test
Itasca Spirit 29B
2001 Ranger Edge



Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/28/11 03:55am

TATEST: I agree with your first paragraph. I've ordered "Special Order" cars/pickups before...and found that some dealers (here in NJ) want nothing to do with it...and others have no problem ordering anything in the catalog. My previous post tells that story.
While looking for a XLT Extended cab stick shift (either the I-4 or the V-6) the nearest dealer that the computer showed had one...was in Washington DC. The dealer flatly refused to go for it (understandable....4 hours each way)..but that was it. Yep...sticks were available in the standard cab, white color "commercial" Rangers...(but only 3 of them),but I want what I want.

"Different truck market" ? You hit the nail on the head. And...dealers must respond to it. Here in the Northeast....automatics are "in"...sticks are "out"...and therefore far and few between.

My experience.


Posted By: loydt on 07/28/11 04:59am

I did a nationwide search for a v6 5 speed like I wanted. There was 1 total.


Posted By: blackf3504dr on 07/28/11 05:37am

jerseyjim wrote:

TATEST: Here in the Northeast....automatics are "in"...sticks are "out"...and therefore far and few between.

My experience.


It's not just in the Northeast, The trend is towards automatics nation wide. Try and find a mid-size sedan with a standard trans... Both GM and Ford have stopped putting anything but an automatic in their heavy duty pick ups. Is this part of the "sissyfication" of America or the sign of an ageing population ....
I prefer to row the gears for myself


Posted By: loydt on 07/28/11 01:16pm

Also, The Ford Ranger will end production for the US market forever on 12/22/11. I found this out today.


Posted By: jerseyjim on 07/28/11 04:33pm

LOYDT: Not to argue...but I heard this (have heard this for a few years...that Ranger would be retired)....and when I purchased my 2011, the salesman said "he had not heard anything.....".
I then googled "2012 Ford Ranger Pickup" and there were photos supplosivly of the 2012 Ranger. These photos showed something like a NISSAN pickup....4 doors, FOUR foot bed with a radically sloped windshield.

Who knows? We will know when all the 2012's come out...probably September.


Posted By: gss036 on 07/28/11 05:33pm

I had a friend who went to a Ford Ranger for a dingy, thinking he would gain less weight from his full size Ford 150. He said in the end there was only 300 lbs difference. I like the ranger, maybe one day when I need a smaller truck it would make a great choice.


Posted By: loydt on 07/29/11 12:17pm

See for yourself.

http://www.autotrader.com/research/article/car-news/104375/ford-ranger-ending-production.jsp

My dealer also confirmed it.


Posted By: tatest on 08/03/11 04:53pm

jerseyjim wrote:

LOYDT: Not to argue...but I heard this (have heard this for a few years...that Ranger would be retired)....and when I purchased my 2011, the salesman said "he had not heard anything.....".
I then googled "2012 Ford Ranger Pickup" and there were photos supplosivly of the 2012 Ranger. These photos showed something like a NISSAN pickup....4 doors, FOUR foot bed with a radically sloped windshield.

Who knows? We will know when all the 2012's come out...probably September.


You are seeing the new version of the GLOBAL Ford Ranger, which has been different from the U.S. Ranger for quite some time. Ford will use the same name for different vehicles in different markets; they are not alone on this.

Latest information I've come across, Ford has not yet decided to import the global Ranger as a replacement for the U.S. Ranger. It is a larger size, would be a lot more expensive, and the small diesel engines are not EPA certified. There is a U.S. version of the small gas four, but a 2.5 four in a F-150 size truck would still be a hard sell here.

Long term speculation: by the time U.S. light trucks must get a MINIMUM 30 mpg on the EPA test cycle (2025), whatever is the global Ranger at that time will have been Americanized and produced in North America as the new fuel efficient replacement for the F-150. The CAFE accounting tricks for FlexFuel, hybrids and electrics might help our current size light trucks meet the CAFE target, but to meet that 30 mpg minimum on every vehicle produced, we are going to need some smaller trucks with small engines.

If you want an Ranger/Colorado size pickup, new, better shop now. GM hasn't announced discontinuation of the Colorado/Sierra, but have announced end of all production at the only U.S. plant that makes it.


Posted By: wny_pat on 03/11/12 08:06am

jerseyjim wrote:

(Volvo...which Ford ownes)
Not any more!!! "August 2010, Ford completed its sale of Volvo to the parent of Chinese motor manufacturer Geely Automobile for $1.8 billion." So today the car part of Volvo is Chinese owned.


“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.”


Posted By: jerseyjim on 03/08/12 03:52am

I got the 5420 from a fast glance at the label in the door jamb. Maybe that's the MAX. No matter...the truck is a good one and tows just fine.

The baseplate (BlueOX) went on without any problems....except I found out that the hooks (have to be removed) were installed with RED locktite. Really needed strength and a long breaker bar to get them off. Othewise? Not too bad.

Rather than go with the diode system for the brake and taillights, I chose the magnetic units...put them on the roof of the pickup. According to my local State Police, as long as tail/turn/stop lights are VISABLE to traffic behind you, placement doesn't matter.
I've been told by people that SHOULD know....that with the newer vehicles, the diode system can do something to the computer...you get false readings (trouble codes) or something. (My 2007 Chevy HHR (my other toad)has the diodes...no problems)

Yes, 2011 is the last year for the Ranger...in the U.S.A. "Ranger" will be marketed overseas with either a 4 cyl gas or 5 cyl diesel (Volvo...which Ford ownes) and the SIZE of the truck is supposibly very close to the F-150...and Ford does not want to infringe on THAT market.


Posted By: JoeH on 03/07/12 07:10am

jerseyjim wrote:

LOREN ROSS: Did I get that right? A Ford dealer refused to sell you (and install) a Ford (only) item? Sounds like a lazy dealer.....or one that just doesn't care. Can't imagine that. Like back in the 1980s I wanted a Crown Victoria with a "towing package"...I know they have (had it) because Ford advertised it. One dealer wanted nothing to do with it....all he tried to do was sell me what he had on the lot...and none of them had the towing package. The other dealer....no problem. They didn't have a car with my specs...but they had no problem ordering one. THAT is the dealer I return to...and the dealer that I purchased this new Ranger from. Unfortunately for your location this guy is a local dealer, (in New Jersey) a big one, too. Wonder why......you made your own for $12...and found someone who could do the re-programming for 67? Great. But I'm kinda like a hammer and chisel man....electronics baffle me. Oh, well......

LOYDT: the 5 spd stick is the best...easiest to work with. Unfortunately, as I found out, it's almost a special order....when I requested a XLT package with an extended cab. One WAS scheduled to arrive in late August....and in silver. I didn't want to wait...and don't like silver. So, there it is.
The 2WD with the automatic tranny was really my first choice. DOES Ford have some kind of driveshaft disconnect? I never heard of one....get that dealer to give you specifics. If in doubt...don't do it. REMCO, as far as I ever knew, was the only company to make a proven disconnect. Many many people use them, most without any problems. But REMCO sold that part of the business to someone else...and if you google "driveshaft disonnects" you will find the REMCO website and click on "disconnects" and the whole story is there. I guessed not for the near future. So...with Ford, the 4WD is the only option. It's more money, you do lose a couple hundred pounds of "payload" and I was surprised how heavy the "small" truck is: 5240 pounds! But..there it is. And I'm happy. This truck, with any luck, will last me a long long time. Rangers have an excellent durability reputation. It might even outlast me!
Next step, in September is to install a baseplate. BlueOX makes one (BX 2195) that is exactly the same as their model for our current toad...our 2007 Chevy HHR, so, for the towbar (Falcon) no mods are needed.



I am looking at getting a Ranger as a toad.... the Ford website says the 2011 4wd Sport extended cab , auto weight is:•Curb weight: 1,636kg (3,606lbs)

Where did you gdet the 5240 LBS from ?


Posted By: GTyson3 on 10/18/11 07:03pm

I have a 2011 Ranger with the NTK installed from the Dealer. It acts exactly as what has been described here. The yellow light comes on briefly and then goes out. This is normal. If you open the door and listen carefully you will hear the transfer case mechanism make a noise that is disengaging the drive axles and puts the 4WD mechanism in a neutral state until you place the gear selector in another position and turn the key off.


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