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If you haven’t seen a six-wheeled truck yet, you must have been asleep for the past few years. Six-wheeled trucks aren’t exactly prevalent, but they are spreading like the beginning of a zombie movie; at first, only a few people get zombed up, but give it a little time… you know what happens next. Joining the six-wheeled truck trend, the Ford Ranger with the aftermarket third axel can haul more than a Ford F-150. 

Can you get a six-wheeled Ford Ranger? 

Ford Ranger HEX 6x6 by Ricardo painted in a tough olive green
Ford Ranger HEX 6×6 by Ricardo | Ricardo

As if the Ford Ranger wasn’t already a capable small pickup truck, now has a new upgrade that radically transforms the Ranger in more ways than one. The company’s new HEX system adds an extra axle to the pickup truck while increasing its hauling capability. 

The Ranger getting a six-wheel setup means the six-wheel truck market is growing yet again. We just covered the Ford F-150 getting a six-wheel conversion kit last week. Other than that, there are still plenty (more than plenty) of six-wheeled trucks out there. Companies like Apocalypse, Mercedes, and Hennessey are leading the charge for turning regular trucks into monster beasts of burden. 

How much can the Ford Ranger haul? 

The 2024 Ford Ranger Raptor jumping through the air
2024 Ford Ranger Raptor | Ford

The 2024 Ford Ranger normally hauls up to 1,905 lbs in the bed. After the slap on another axle and a couple of wheels, the Ranger can haul an astounding 8,377 lbs. Compared to the Ford F-150’s 3,325-lb limit, the bigger truck might have to start calling the Ranger “Sir.” 

The Ricardo HEX system was designed to make the Ranger a more capable off-road vehicle that can carry more stuff. The conversion kit includes a De Deion rear suspension setup that Ricardo says is weight-efficient and robust. Not only does the third axle strengthen the rig immensely, but it also can unhook itself, allowing for more flexibility. The six-wheel truck conversion kit comes in two versions: a 6×6 and a “lazy” axle 6×4. 

The 6×6 Ford Ranger has other serious advantages 

Aside from the added rear strength of the third axle, the added axle can also be powered by a 282-horsepower electric motor. The electric motor is meant to provide extra power to help with extra weight one might haul with the truck’s new capability. Along with the added power, the sophisticated rear axle also has regenerative braking, which sends power back to the electric motor’s battery. 

Ricardo designed the HEX 6×6 system to be a bolt-on modification, meaning the truck doesn’t need to be hacked into pieces to install it. 

What is Ricardo? 

The main Ricardo name in the automotive world right now tends to refer to the cheery Aussie F1 driver, Daniel Ricardo. The engineering consulting company Ricardo is not the same thing. In fact, Ricardo doesn’t only work in the automotive field. The company is also involved in various other industries, including the public sector, mass transit, financial services, energy and utilities, manufacturing, and of course, the automotive industry. Even in its capacity as an automotive engineering company, Ricardo is diverse. The group does motorsports, motorcycles, commercial vehicles, passenger cars, and high-performance vehicles. 

All we know is that the six-wheel Ranger shows this new trend must be taking off. Maybe its because too many people can’t afford HD trucks who need them, or maybe it’s just that people’s tastes are changing. Either way, I, for one, can’t say that I saw this coming.