This Used Ford Ranger Is the Cheapest Small Pickup to Maintain, Consumer Reports Says

With over 30 years of on the road, the Ford Ranger is one of the best-known pickup trucks. The Blue Oval has fined-tuned the F-Series’ little sibling over the years, and consumers still appreciate its capability and affordability. And when it comes to older Ranger models, many are still on the road today, performing every task thrown at them.

In fact, the Ford Ranger appears in Consumer Reports’ “Least and Most Expensive Cars to Keep on the Road” as the cheapest small pickup. If you own this Ranger model year, you’ll be happy to know your truck costs you the least in maintenance and repairs.

How to calculate maintenance costs

Consumer Reports weighs in with data collected from member surveys. Based on actual responses and specific model expenses, the consumer advocate group assembled a list of the least and most expensive vehicles to keep on the road.

And though there are general average maintenance costs by brand, these survey responses cover 2011 models. Asking owners about expenses over the past 12 months, including routine service and repairs, Consumer Reports concluded which used vehicles have the lowest ownership costs.

The 2011 Ford Ranger is the cheapest pickup to maintain

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When it comes to costs ownership at the 10-year mark, the 2011 Ford Ranger is a champ. Surveyed member data shows the 2011 Ranger, costing less than $10,000 when purchased used, costs about $200 each year to maintain. That’s less than a year’s worth of Starbucks coffee.

Consumer Reports also gives this compact truck 4/5 stars in overall reliability. For major components, including transmission and engine reliability, the 2011 Ford Rangers earns 5 stars.

Why the 2011 Ford Ranger earns even more points with owners

Ridgeback Service Bodies suggests a few Ford Ranger model years that most owners consider the best. And the 2011 Ranger made this list, with its extended cab, two-door design. The bed size is impressive for pickups these days, as is the cabin. This Ranger can seat five passengers.

Consumers also love the 2011 model’s configuration selections. They include extended cab and regular cab styles. Also, choose between a six-foot or seven-foot bed length. And there are XL, XLT, and Sport trims, making it easy to package the perfect Ford Ranger.

It’s also an affordable pickup to purchase and fill up at the pump, thanks to its four-cylinder engine. And for anyone needing more muscle, the 4.0-liter V6 and four-wheel-drive options hit the mark.

But not every model is perfect

Edmunds‘ 2011 Ford Ranger review pointed out a few dislikes about the truck. A big issue is its interior design’s outdated feel. Some critics also said the riding dynamics were choppy. Despite its smaller, more maneuverable size, the Ranger was still less than stellar in handling, too. Others deducted points for lack of desirable equipment that many other models offered as standard. In fact, it’s one of the few Ford models without Sync technology or the contractor-coveted Work Solutions suite.

If you need a small pickup with a few miles on it, consider the 2011 Ford Ranger. Sure, it’s older and imperfect. You’ll have to forgo the most up-to-date tech and creature comforts. But for an affordable truck that gets the job done, it may be the best option.