In 2019, Ford Motor Company made a significant investment of $1 billion in South Africa, translating to R16.2 billion. This investment significantly boosts confidence for the South African economy, especially given the negative perception surrounding the country.

Neale Hill, President of Ford Motor Company Africa, believes that businesses must step in and solve the country’s problems, as the government cannot do it alone. 

Although this process was not linear, certain tiers and sectors within the government were receptive to the idea, including the previous premier of Gauteng, David Makhura, who was instrumental in making it happen.

This investment has the potential to contribute up to 2% to the country’s GDP. Twelve factories will build parts that are fed into assembly operations in Silverton to build the next-generation Ranger.

Taking the Segment in a New Direction

The Ranger is one of the most sought-after cars on AutoTrader, with the Double Cab segment receiving over 16 million searches a year. In this highly competitive market, the new Ranger aims to stand out by taking the segment in a new direction.

Building on the established reputation of being “Built Ford Tough,” the new Ranger offers refinement, luxury, and technology not seen before in this segment. On the other hand, Woolridge describes the Ranger Wildtrak as feeling like an SUV, with a level of comfort and refinement that sets it apart from other pickups.

The Ranger boasts new features such as:

  • Improved Off-Road Capabilities: Equipped with a Terrain Management System that allows drivers to switch between different driving modes, such as sand, mud, and snow, for improved off-road capabilities.
  • Advanced Safety Features: It has advanced safety features such as Autonomous Emergency Braking, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keeping Aid, and a 360-degree camera system.
  • Enhanced Technology: Boasts an 8-inch touchscreen display with Ford’s latest SYNC 3 infotainment system, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto compatibility.
  • Improved Fuel Efficiency: It is powered by a 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel engine that delivers improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions.

Ford’s $1 billion investment in South Africa and the launch of the new Ranger are significant developments that will positively impact the country’s economy and consumers. Despite its challenges, the investment shows that South Africa is still an attractive destination for foreign investment.