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Uh oh, the 2021 Ford Ranger is facing trouble as it lags behind rivals such as the Jeep Gladiator and Toyota Tacoma. The Ford Ranger is decreasing in sales as competitors gain more popularity. But why is the Ranger falling behind? 

The 2021 Ford Ranger faces declining sales 

The 2021 Ford Ranger Tremor Lariat light pickup truck in red parked atop a hill of uneven terrain and rocks
2021 Ford Ranger Tremor Lariat | The Ford Motor Company

According to Ford Authority, in 2021, Ford Ranger sales decreased in the United States and Canada but increased in Columbia, Brazile, Chile, Argentina, and Mexico during the third quarter of 2021. 

The 2021 Ford Ranger sold 14,335 units in Q3, 2021. This is a 49 percent decrease from the 28,350 units sold in Q3 2020. The Ranger landed in third place in its segment according to sales volume. The Toyota Tacoma landed in first place by selling 61,335 units, and the Jeep Gladiator came in second by selling 22,674 units. The GMC Sierra landed in last place and only sold 5,479 units. 

Why is the Ranger in third place?

A lot of things have been impacting the automotive industry this year. There are the ongoing global semiconductor chip shortage and other supply chain issues caused by the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. 

The 2021 Ford Ranger may have experienced a sales decrease due to a lack of inventory. Ford has been using their supply of semiconductor chips to keep their most popular models, such as the F-150, moving. 

There were supply-related production stoppages at the Ford Michigan Assembly plant, where the Rangler models for North America are produced. The Ranger expects to reclaim the second-place spot in the segment once supply stabilizes. 

Also, the Ranger could be less desirable compared to the Jeep Gladiator and Toyota Tacoma. You can get started in a 2021 Ranger for about $24,820, while the Toyota Tacoma starts at around $26,400. The Jeep Gladiator starts at $34,960 but includes more standard features such as four-wheel drive. 

The 2021 Ranger has a 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine with 270 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. It can tow up to 7,500 lbs. 

The Toyota Tacoma comes with a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine with 159 hp and 180 lb-ft of torque. You can upgrade to the 3.5-liter V6 engine for 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. The Tacoma can tow up to 6,800 lbs. 

The Jeep Gladiator has a standard 3.6-liter V6 engine with 285 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. The 3.0-liter diesel engine provides 260 hp and 442 lb-ft of torque. It can tow up to 7,650 lbs. 

What do critics dislike about the 2021 Ranger? 

2023 Ford Ranger teaser
2023 Ford Ranger teaser | Ford

Do You Need the 2022 Ford Maverick or Ford Ranger?

According to Edmunds, the 2021 Ford Ranger could have a better ride quality. It has a peppy acceleration, but transmission is slow and unresponsive. Also, the steering is vague, and the suspension jostles over bumps. 

The interior could be a little more refined. It keeps wind and road noise at bay, but passengers bump in the seats. The climate control system features tiny buttons that are difficult to distinguish, and the infotainment system lacks hard controls. 

Interior storage is lacking, and while the Ranger can go off-roading, it may not be able to keep up with the Gladiator or Tacoma. But luckily, the 2023 Ford Ranger will be totally redesigned. It may correct these issues with a brand new interior and possibly more off-roading capabilities.