Despite its age, the Volkswagen Amarok still features one of the most usable trays in the Australian ute segment. The next Amarok will be built in partnership with Ford, which previously hasn’t been able to hit the same levels of space.
We’re talking of course about the ability to fit a full-sized Euro pallet in the tray. Volkswagen offers the ability to do this with the Amarok, built on a platform dating back to 2010, but you couldn’t do the same in the outgoing Ford Ranger.
When Ford and Volkswagen first got together in 2016 to begin discussions about the shared next-generation vehicle, Volkswagen had two core requirements: a V6 turbo-diesel engine, and the ability to fit a full-sized Euro pallet in the tray.
“We had this huge kind of wall where we had all the different inputs of what are the things we wanted to achieve and one of those was to fit a Euro pallet in the back between the wheel arches,” said Ford T6 chief platform engineer, Ian Foston.
“There are many reasons to make the track wider and move the dampers outboard from a ride point of view, but one of the requirements was fitting a pallet in the bank between wheel arches.”
Ford moved the front wheels forward by 50mm and also adjusted the location of the rear dampers to be outboard of the chassis frame rails in the new Ranger, for improved cargo loading and ride quality.
While it’s not specified by Ford, it’s understood the Ranger and Everest also sit on a wider track for improved stability.
Ford has struck a partnership with ARB to fit around 600 accessories to the new Ranger and Everest, which are expected to flow on to the Amarok once it’s launched as well.