The Edsel Ranger was introduced in 1958, the first year of the Edsel marque, and was joined by the Pacer, Corsair, Citation, and the Villager and Bermuda station wagons. The ranger was the entry-level Edsel product and was available as a two-door sedan, four-door sedan, hardtop coupe, and hardtop sedan. Prices ranged from $2,490 to $2,650. It was powered by a 361 cubic-inch eight-cylinder engine that it shared with the Pacer and the Station Wagon models. Standard equipment included a rear-view mirror, two coat hangers, a cigarette lighter, black rubber floor mats, and armrests. Two-tone paint was optional, along with power windows, power steering, power brakes, four-way power seats, electric clock, push-button radio with manual antenna, and a long list of other items. Other items included seat belts, warning lights, automatic trunk opener, air conditioning, and rear door child safety lock covers.
Both the ranger and the Pacer rested on a 118-inch wheelbase platform, while the Corsair and Citation had a larger 124-inch wheelbase. Like many other vehicles of this period, the designs were similar throughout the lineup, distinguishable by the level of exterior trim and interior accouterments. This was true with the Rangers and the upmarket Pacer, with the latter having stainless trim on the fenders and front doors. Early in the 1958-model year, Ranger-only door trim was a dealer option that could be used together with the Pacer fender trim.
The overhead-valve V8 had block and heads that were painted yellow, white painted air cleaner and valve covers, and red 'E 400' markings on the valve cover to designate torque. The engine had 10.5:1 compression, five main bearings, hydraulic valve lifters, and a four-barrel carburetor. It developed just over 300 horsepower at 4,500 RPM. This engine was the 352 cubic-inch Ford V8 with changes to the bore, giving it the 361 cubic-inch displacement size. A three-speed manual transmission was standard, and an optional three-speed automatic with column-mounted gear selector could be purchased for an additional cost. The Teletouch automatic was highly promoted by Edsel, but trouble-prone. This $231 option had its drive-selection buttons located int he steering wheel hub.
During its introductory year, the Ranger accounted for 21,301 total sales in the North American market. The Pacer had similar first-year sales, with the rest of the line having even less. The Edsel became a marketing disaster for Ford and the company's corporate strategy.
For the 1959 model year, the premium Citation and the best-selling Pacer model lines were dropped, as was the Teletouch transmission, which was replaced with the column-selector Mile-O-Matic (essentially the two-speed Ford-O-Matic). The 1959 Ranger and the Corsair both rested on a 120-inch wheelbase platform ladder-type frame. The iconic horse-collar grille was replaced by a shield shape filled with rows of bars, while the list of body styles remained the same.
For 1960, the Edsel model range consisted of the Ranger and the Villager station wagons. The total sales of the Villager wagons accounted for a mere 275 units. The Ranger was offered as a two-door and four-door sedan, two- and four-door hardtop, and a convertible. A Deluxe trim package was available on all but the 2-door sedan. The convertible only came with the Deluxe trim package and standard dual exhaust.
Powering the 1960 Ranger was an overhead-valve, 292 cubic-inch V8 that had a two-barrel carburetor, and red-painted valve covers and air clear. An optional inline six-cylinder engine had a 223 cubic-inch displacement and delivered 145 horsepower at 4,000 RPM.
The 1960 Edsel Range had completely new body designs with a lower silhouette, greater width, and longer overall length. The front had dual headlamps that appeared to float against the chrome grid. Below that grille was a one-piece bumper that incorporated a license plate housing in the center. In the back were twin vertical taillamps on each end of the car located above the one-piece rear bumper. Ranger nameplates could be found on the cowl side.
The four-door standard sedan accounted for hte most sales, with 1,126 units sold. The Deluxe sedan had 162 sales. The two-door sedan found 777 willing buyers and the 2-door standard sedan had 243 sales.
Standard equipment included an electric clock, cigarette lighter, air cleaner, oil filter, positive-action windshield wipers, front foam cushions, carpets, armrests, ashtrays, two coat hooks, and turn signals.
Ford had done market research and polled car shoppers, but ultimately decided to disregard the data and went ahead with the Edsel, an expensive version of the Ford that most people did not find attractive. The vertical grille that Ford designers had created to make it stand out, was highly criticized. The basic purpose of the grille is to allow air into the engine bay, and for the narrow Edsel grille, this meant it had been enormous.
The Edsel was introduced at the beginning of a recession, had reliability issues, was poorly made, and over-hyped. It did not help that its base Edsel was higher than the most expensive Ford. The failed experiment ended in 1960 with production never reaching that high. Less than 3,000 examples were built in 1960 included 2,571 Edsel Rangers. The 1960 Edsel models were manufactured for just 10 weeks, ending on November 19th of 1959. by Daniel Vaughan | Sep 2020
Related Reading : Edsel Ranger History
A marketing disaster for Ford and for Fords corporate strategy for meeting GMs product line for product line, the 1958 Edsel was unfortunately not what the public was expecting. The Edsel made its official debut on September 4th 1957 in showrooms spanning the country. Craftful and expensive marketing pre-empted this launch, as the extensive advertising kept everyone whispering and wondering about.... Continue Reading >>
One of only 76 Edsel Convertibles produced before the Edsel was cancelled. It was built on the last day of scheduled production - November 18th of 1959. This Edsel was equipped with almost every option offered including rare factory seat belts. Th....[continue reading]
This car is the original Lilac Metallic and Polar White color. Only 1,288 four-door sedans were produced for 1960. The 1960 Edsel was manufactured for 10 weeks ending November 19th of 1959. A total of 2,846 were produced for the 1960 model year. ....[continue reading]
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1960 Edsel Ranger Production Figures
Standard Sedan 1,126
Deluxe Sedan 162
Standard Hardtop 243
Deluxe Hardtop 52
Standard Hardtop 104
Deluxe Hardtop 31
2,846 total vehicles produced by Edsel in 1960 The 1960 Edsel Ranger accounted for 90.3% of Edsel's 2,846 production.