I got another close encounter with the Ford Ranger Wildtrak. This is actually my third time to drive this awesome vehicle. All in all, it has parked for several days in our garage at home. But even on the third date, we are still “getting to know each other better.” Just like any relationship.
Getting to Know the Ford Ranger Wildtrak Better
Third time was a charm. I was still like a little boy who excitedly opened a birthday gift as I once again got to road test the Ford Ranger Wildtrak. It was a more “intimate” encounter indeed.
While it was the third time that I was allowed to take it home over the weekend, I still have yet to play with the often ignored gadgetries of the Wildtrak. Since this is my third time with the Wildtrak, is it a sign that I am getting one? Am I and this vehicle made for each other?
At this time, the Ford Ranger Wildtrak 4×2 and I are still “getting to know each other better.” For this, I want to thank Mr. Dave Palma, a Sales Specialist at Ford Negros, who gave me a detailed orientation of the often unnoticed features of one of today’s most hi-tech vehicles.
My tastes for cars are quite too simple. I just want a car that runs smoothly and is just powerful enough to bring my family and me to a lot of places in Negros Occidental. It should comfortably sit the four of us and can protect us from the elements when travelling.
But sometimes, we actually just need to test drive one of the best cars in the market to fall in love with them. And want them so much in order to buy them. The Ford Ranger Wildtrak is definitely one of those.
Our Negros Occidental Destinations Post-Lockdown
The Covid-19 pandemic has found us all on lockdown for more than three months. It was about time to get out and have a change of scenery. But we had to carefully pick our destinations, as we need to travel safely since the virus is still out there.
Murcia, Eastern Negros Occidental
On the first day, we revisited Baluarte Rest and Relaxation. It is a quiet place in Murcia, Negros Occidental where we could get some fresh air and enjoy homecooked food. The first time we went there, I drove a mini-Multi-Purpose Vehicle (mini-MPV).
While most of the road going there was an easy drive with the MPV we own, there is a rocky trail and an inclined path that we had to hurdle. Those were short challenges that even a sedan can overcome. But the first time I drove there with the mini-mpv, I had to maneuver and step on the gas correctly to get through that challenging terrain. For the Wildtrak, it was effortless. I only stepped on the pedal just a little when we climbed the inclined road.
Calatrava, Northern Negros Occidental
On the 2nd day, we “conquered” the winding road of Don Salvador Benedicto to get to the Calatrava Monkey Reserve. No rocky terrains, but there were tight turns to make and steep hills to scale. The Wildtrak performance was impressive!
We also drove through strong rains to get to Victorias City and then eventually to Bacolod City.
For two days we toured Negros Occidental and enjoyed the easy flow of traffic.
Pahanocoy, Southern Bacolod
I thought the city streets would be tamer. We went to Brgy. Pahanocoy, Bacolod City where all the potters live and sell their wares. Wifey needed additional earthen pots for her new plants.
It was only this time did I realize that a truck is not ideal for the urban jungle–especially in a city of undisciplined drivers that park or stop anywhere and make sudden turns, too.
But that weakness was compensated with the gizmos on the Wildtrak. I get warned with a beep when a vehicle gets too close. I can park in a tight space using the park sensors and assist camera.
More importantly, the dashboard displays how much fuel I am consuming with the way I step on the gas pedal. So I can know if I am being wasteful with the fuel consumption. As you know, city driving can be fuel inefficient.
New Discoveries with the Ford Ranger Wildtrak
My third outing with the Ford Ranger Wildtrak has led to a lot of discoveries. Sharing them here with you.
Smart Keyless Entry
Modern vehicles are mostly equipped or later furnished with a central locking system that can lock or unlock all car doors with the driver’s lock switch. The keyless entry with the use of a button remotely controlled is a handy add-on. Finally, an alarm system completes the vehicle’s security system.
Check out the smart keyless entry in action in the video below.
But then Ford leveled up the Wildtrak Smart Keyless Entry that unlocks the car door for me once I touch the door knob. It’s efficient when I am carrying grocery bags—I no longer need to fish out my keys.
Automatic Rain Sensing Wipers
The wipers activate automatically when the windshield gets wet. It’s pretty exciting. I no longer have to switch on the wipers to clear the windshield. In this road trip, it rained so hard many times that I got to appreciate this feature. It also wiped the windshield faster when the rain poured harder.
Voice-controlled SYNC® 3
I eagerly “played” with this feature some more. It kind of needs getting used to since my usual practice is to stop the car to answer calls or read text messages. The SYNC® 3 is the capability of the Wildtrak to synchronize my phone and many of its data with the vehicle’s touchscreen control console.
Honestly, I had to practice using it a bit because the voice command is not used to my accent. Plus, the way we pronounce the names in our contact list differ with the pronunciations on the SYNC® 3. But it’s easier and safer to get in touch with important contacts while on the road.
What I was not able to explore was syncing apps, especially Google Maps. I needed it badly when we were on the way to the Calatrava Monkey Sanctuary. The vehicle GPS was kind of confusing when we were in very remote areas. Maybe when I get my chance with the Ford Ranger Raptor, I can tinker with it some more, as the Raptor also has this feature.
10-speed Automatic Transmission with SelectShift™
All the while I thought that the Wildtrak gave me a smooth drive because of its 2.0L Turbo Diesel Engine. But when the New Everest Sport was launched last June, the 10-speed Automatic Transmission with SelectShift™ was mentioned.
So I tried to recall where I have heard about it before. It was probably at the Media Drive orientation last year but I did not give it much attention. This time, I googled it and got to appreciate it during this 2-day long distance trip.
While I was still learning to drive, it took me some time to get used to the right timing when shifting gears. Whenever I have to drive a different vehicle with manual transmission, it would usually take me some time to finally get the right timing when shifting.
However, the automatic transmission is a heaven-sent innovation that Ford has never stopped leveling up. Our mini-mpv has a 5-speed manual transmission. Meanwhile, Ford has a 10-speed automatic transmission. I can’t even imagine manually shifting up to the 7th gear!
The 10-speed automatic transmission is not just for better performance—it’s also for fuel efficiency! Meaning to say, the new line of Ford vehicles is environment-friendly as well as economical.
Years ago, it was more cost-effective to drive a vehicle with manual transmission. But with new technology being introduced regularly, automatic transmissions are getting more economical in fuel consumption.
My Wish List for the Wildtrak
If ever I am allowed to make a wish list, I would want to have phone holder or the perfect area to attach a phone holder. I know that because of the SYNC® 3, I don’t have to keep accessing my phone anymore. I really also should not anyway for safety reasons. But then again, if I attach my phone to SYNC® 3 via USB, I want to have a more suitable place to put it.
I need to mention this because I just recently found this out, too. Ford’s newer vehicles with new generation power train engines, especially the Ford Ranger series, only require a once-a-year maintenance check-up. That means lower maintenance costs and lesser exposure to other people in the light of the Covid-19 threat.
The proof of the pudding is in the eating. You might not be easily convinced by my vehicle review, but perhaps a test drive can persuade you better. Ask the Ford showroom how to qualify and avail of it.
There are many other bells and whistles that the 4×2 Wildtrak have but are too many to mention in this blog. A visit to the Ford Negros Showroom is what you need. Or watch out for the Ford Island Conquest to visit Negros again so that you can discover some more about the Ford Vehicles.
Contact person: Trecia Javier, Branch Manager
Contact No.: (0917) 351 9127
Address: Talisay Highway, Negros Occidental