Ford celebrates South African centenary with several new models
An electric Mustang and the Territory SUV are among the cars headed here in the next 18 months
Ford Motor Company celebrated its centenary this week by announcing it will build a Ford Ranger plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) for export at its Silverton plant.
In a 100-year milestone event at the factory on Wednesday attended by local and international Ford representatives, the company also revealed an expanded Ford product range that will arrive in South Africa over the next 18 months.
In a R5.2bn investment, the double-cab PHEV will be produced in Silverton from late next year with other models of the new-generation Ranger bakkie. The investment incorporates a new battery pack assembly plant being constructed at the Silverton plant for the PHEV system.
More than 960,000 Rangers have been built locally and the Silverton plant has the capacity to produce 720 vehicles a day or 200,000 vehicles a year.
Exact specifications have yet to be confirmed, but Ford says the plug-in hybrid will have more torque than any other Ranger thanks to its 2.3l EcoBoost turbo petrol engine paired with an electric motor and rechargeable battery system. It can be driven in pure electric mode for more than 45km.
The Ranger PHEV will be built for export to Europe, Australia and New Zealand. It has not been confirmed whether the vehicle will be sold in South Africa.
Ford announced the local Ranger line-up will soon be expanded with two new derivatives: the adventure-focused Tremor and the luxurious Platinum.
Ford also announced a raft of new imported models headed our way soon, including the electric Mustang Mach-E, the new seventh-generation Mustang range, the new Territory five-seater SUV and the next-generation Tourneo and Transit Custom.
Here is a rundown of the new models:
Ranger Tremor and Platinum
The Ranger Tremor follows a similar recipe to the recently launched Wildtrak X, aimed at customers who want enhanced capability in challenging off-road conditions. The double-cab is based on the XLT series and features a wider track and higher ground clearance, with Bilstein position-sensitive dampers and off-road-focused driver assistance systems as standard.
The Ranger Platinum is positioned above the Wildtrak models and comes with additional luxury and comfort.
The previous-generation Territory was briefly sold here in the mid-2000s and the nameplate returns with the five-seat Territory SUV positioned between the newly-launched Ford Puma compact SUV and seven-seater Everest. Arriving in mid-2024, the vehicle is larger than the discontinued Kuga and will compete against the Toyota Rav4 and Nissan X-Trail.
It is built in China by the JMC-Ford joint venture and is powered by a 1.8l EcoBoost petrol turbo engine. The model is called the Equator Sport in China and exported to other markets as the Territory.
The new seventh-generation pony car arrives in 2024 and includes the Dark Horse, the most powerful naturally aspirated Mustang to date. Its 5l Coyote V8 engine generates 373kW.
At the other end of the scale is the electric Mustang Mach-E, which is headed here in 2025, boasting the ability to silently whisk from 0-100km/h in 3.7 seconds.
Tourneo and Transit
The new Tourneo Custom has a larger cabin and long wheelbase models offer three rows of seating for up to nine occupants.
Europe’s top-selling van and last year’s best-selling vehicle overall in the UK, the new Transit Custom is aimed at small to medium businesses. It is built on a new platform with a lower cargo floor and improved cabin access for easier loading.
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