Dakar 2014 will begin in Argentina and will cover some 5,282 miles to the finish line in Chile.
First and foremost, this doesn't mean that the new global Ford Ranger is coming to the US. Global, in this case, is a term that applies to nearly every market that's not the US. Anyhoo, Ford South Africa so heartedly believes in its new "global" compact pickup that it will enter two in the 2014 Dakar Rally this January 5-18 in Argentina. But to get the competing trucks awesome ready, the folks at SVT in the US as well as South Racing GmbH in Germany will do a bit of operating work on them.
Starting off with a composite-bodied Ranger Double Cab, it'll be fitted with an independent front and rear suspension specifically tuned for off-road duties. But perhaps the greatest modification will be under the hood: the Mustang GT's aluminum 5.0-liter V8. It will be mated to a six-speed sequential gearbox that will send power to all four wheels. Output is expected to be at least 349 horsepower and 413 lb-ft of torque. To handle the long distance, a 132-gallon fuel cell will be located in the bed. Expect to also see an upgraded engine management system, limited-slip differentials front and rear, and water-cooled Brembo brakes out back. Estimated top speed is 106 mph.