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Ford F-150 vs Ford Ranger

If you’re in the market for a new truck, Ford has a ton of great options for you to consider. But with so many great truck options it can be a little overwhelming trying to figure out exactly what you need.

The F-150 is a half-ton pickup truck while the Ford Ranger is a mid-size truck, but when do you need the larger truck and when should you go with the lower price tag and better fuel economy? To help you figure out which truck is right for you we broke down both the F-150 and the Ford Ranger for you here.

The Ford F-150

With 14 generations from 1948 to today, it’s really not feasible or relevant to go through every Ford F-150 out there. Still, there’s a reason it’s stood the test of time in a way almost no other vehicle model has.

We’ll highlight some of the more recent F-150 models and specifications so you have a pretty good idea of what’s out there and what a modern F-150 can do for you!

Engine and Performance Specs

There are tons of engine options available for the F-150, and while it wouldn’t be practical to highlight every F-150 engine option Ford ever put under the hood, we’ve highlighted most of the engine options from 1997 and on for you here.

And if you’re shopping for an F-150, you need to take a look at what’s under the hood!

Engine Size

Available Years



4.2L V6

1997 to 2008


255 lb-ft

4.6L V8

1997 to 2008


290 lb-ft

5.4L V8

1997 to 2003


350 lb-ft

5.4L V8

2004 to 2008


365 lb-ft

6.2L V8

2010 to 2014


434 lb-ft

5.0L V8

2011 to Present


380 lb-ft

3.7L V6

2008 to 2014


278 lb-ft

3.5L V6

2008 to 2017


470 lb-ft

2.7L V6

2015 to Present


375 lb-ft

3.3L V6

2018 to Present


265 lb-ft

3.0L V6

2018 to Present


440 lb-ft

3.5L V6 Hybrid

2021 to Present


570 lb-ft

Towing and Payload Specifications

Whether you’re looking at the maximum payload or the maximum towing capacity of a Ford F-150 there’s a massive variance depending on the truck you’re looking at. It doesn’t just depend on the model year or even the engine size of a Ford F-150, it also depends on the specific packages on the truck.

The minimum maximum towing capacity you can expect from a 2000 F-150 or newer is 5,000 pounds, but with the right engine and package that number can almost triple to 14,000 pounds!

Meanwhile, the maximum payload varies quite a bit too, but it has a much more linear trend. The newer the F-150, generally the higher the payload. For instance, the maximum payload for a 2000 F-150 is between 780 and 1,834 pounds depending on the package, while a 2021 F-150’s maximum payload starts at 1,745 pounds and maxes out at 3,325 pounds.

The Ford Ranger

The Ford Ranger is Ford’s mid-size truck option, making it a bit smaller than the F-150. But it’s been extremely popular through the years starting with its release in 1983. Ford did discontinue the Ranger for the US market in 2012, but in 2019 they brought it back.

You won’t get the same level of performance that you would get with an F-150, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a great truck. We’ve highlighted exactly what this compact truck can do here.

Engine and Performance Specs

Ford has had a tendency to switch things up with engines through the years, and the Ranger has certainly seen its fair share of new power trains and changes. We’ve highlighted all the different engine options you can find under the hood of a Ranger, but keep in mind that not only did Ford change the engine quite a few times, but they made tons of tweaks to each engine through the years too.

Engine Size

Available Years




1983 to 1988


124 lb-ft


1983 to 2001

80 - 119

133 - 149 lb-ft


1983 to 1986


150 lb-ft


1990 to 2008

140 - 154

160 – 190 lb-ft


1983 to 1984


90 lb-ft


1985 – 1986


134 lb-ft


1993 to 2012

160 - 207

225 - 238 lb-ft


2011 to 2012

135 – 143

153 – 154 lb-ft


2019 to Present


310 lb-ft

Towing and Payload Specifications

Like most trucks, if you're trying to figure out how much the Ford Ranger can tow you need to look at the specific truck you’re considering. But even with that in mind, it’s worth noting that no matter what Ford Ranger you go with it can’t quite keep up with an F-150.

The towing capacity for a Ford Ranger starts at 1,600 pounds, and even with the right package and trim the highest it goes to is 3,500 pounds. Since the F-150 towing capacity starts at 5,000 pounds, you’re not going to find a Ranger that can keep up.

Over the years the Ranger’s maximum payload has stayed pretty consistent. For a 1984 Ranger the maximum payload is 1,755 pounds, and for the 2022 Ford Ranger the maximum payload ranges between 1,609 and 1,905 pounds.

Once again, no matter how you look, there’s an F-150 that can do more.

When You Want to Upgrade to a Ford F-150

It really comes down to what you’re looking for in a truck. The F-150 offers significantly higher towing capacities no matter what option you go with, and with the right package they can haul significantly more too.

You need to take an honest look at what you plan on doing with your truck and then you find a truck that will meet your specific needs.

Final Thoughts

If you have questions about whether an F-150 or a Ranger is right for you, the friendly team at Tim’s Truck would love to help you out. Not only that, but if you know what truck you want, they’ll help you track down exactly what you’re looking for, whether it’s a specific model year, package, or specification you need. Tim’s Truck makes the truck-buying process as easy as it gets.

Used Ford F-150

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