This is the high-performance Ranchero Mach 1 truck that Ford needs to build ASAP

Pickup trucks have been manufactured since the early days of the Ford Model T, and by the 1950s, they had become so popular that many buyers purchased them for lifestyle rather than utilitarian reasons. As a result, Detroit-based automakers introduced car-based truck, the most iconic being the Ford Ranchero and the Chevrolet El Camino, launched in 1957 and 1959, respectively. Although these kind of two-door, car-based trucks wouldn’t make much financial sense in the modern era, some enthusiasts are still hoping that the Ranchero and the El Camino will return after many decades. It probably won’t happen, but Youtuber TheSketchMonkey just rendered a modern Ranchero based on the Mustang that Ford should really look into.

A muscle truck inspired by the golden era


TheSketchMonkey uses the 1971 Ranchero as inspiration for this Mustang Mach 1-based truck, and this is no coincidence. The Mach 1 is a true performance coupe, and the 1971 Ranchero very similar because it was based on the Torino and available with the range-topping 7.0-liter V-8 engine.

To integrate a bed into the Mustang Mach 1, the designed "chopped off" the rear section of the roof and redesigned the B-pillar. Of course, the rear window is slanted rather dramatically to match the angle of the rear fascia, and it also features black trim that extends on the upper area of the bed. The Mach 1 truck also sports black stripes with orange accents on the side skirts, the B-pillars, and the upper side panels, as well as "Ranchero" logos on the rear fenders.

This Mustang Mach 1, Ford Ranchero Mashup is Exactly the Car Ford Needs to Produce
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The "Mach 1" badge was removed from the rear fascia, but the big spoiler was kept in place for a sporty look. Finally, TheSketchMonkey opted to lengthen the wheelbase by a bit and replaced the regular Mach 1 wheels with rugged rims inspired by the old Ranchero. Overall, it’s a really cool design, and, surprisingly enough, it seems that the Mustang could become a pretty truck. If only Ford would consider the idea.

The Ford Ranchero hasn’t been around since 1979

This Mustang Mach 1, Ford Ranchero Mashup is Exactly the Car Ford Needs to Produce
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Introduced in 1957, the Ranchero survived on the market for 22 years. Originally based on the full-size Ford of 1957, the Ranchero was redesigned into a much smaller truck based on the Falcon for 1960. The third-gen model saw the Ranchero grow bigger, as it was now based on the mid-size Fairlane. It was also available with a larger, 6.4-liter V-8 engine in its range-topping performance trim.

Another redesigned followed in 1968 when the Ranchero as built around the Torino. When the latter redesigned again in 1970, the Ranchero adopted the car’s more aggressive design, as well as the 7.0-liter Cobra Jet and Super Cobra Jet V-8 engines. The sixth-generation model (1972-1976), also based on the Torino, was larger and heavier and no longer featured the sleek and pointy design of the early 1970s, but Ford continued to offer big V-8 engines.

This Mustang Mach 1, Ford Ranchero Mashup is Exactly the Car Ford Needs to Produce
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The final Ranchero was introduced in 1977 based on the Ford LTD, but as cars were becoming smaller and government restrictions increased, Ford decided to ax the nameplate and offered the Mazda-based Courier until the iconic Ranger debuted in 1983.

The Ranchero name survived for 12 more years in South America, where Ford Motor Argentina built a smaller truck based on its own Falcon model. The Argentine Ranchero was produced over four generations until 1991.

Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert - ciprian@topspeed.com
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read More
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