The New Ford Ranger is Being Built Using the Power of the Sun - Rentech Solutions

September 22, 2022

The New Ford Ranger is Being Built Using the Power of the Sun

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A key contributor within Ford Motor Company’s global manufacturing footprint, the brand’s Silverton assembly line is committed to producing altogether cleaner vehicles for the world. 

Contributing around 7% to the country’s annual GDP, the South African automotive manufacturing industry has an established, well-earned reputation for quality and proficiency. It’s this level of respect that has seen globally significant models like the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Volkswagen Polo, Toyota Hilux and Nissan Navara assembled at facilities around South Africa for export to markets around the world. 

Skillset and workmanship aside, each of these local assembly plants has a role to play within the global mandate of their respective owners. That said, each will currently be working towards aligning with deadlines for eventual carbon neutrality when it comes to the manufacturing process. 

Another headline vehicle assembled in South Africa for export to more than 100 markets around the world is the Ford Ranger pickup (or bakkie as we know them). In anticipation of the all-new versions of this global best-seller – as well as the next Volkswagen Amarok that will be built under agreement on the same production line – launching towards the end of 2022, the brand’s Silverton Assembly line received a timely upgrade that includes the use of altogether cleaner sources of energy.

Mounted atop of 3 610 new covered parking bays sited around the Pretoria-based facility is a total of 30 226 solar PV panels. Linked via up to 5-kilometres worth of medium and low-voltage cabling to 120 three-phase inverters and eight transformers, this new installation can supply up to 13.5 megawatts (MW) of energy to the assembly line. This amount of clean energy – enough to power around 12 000 average-sized households for a year – is claimed to fulfil up to 35% of Silverton’s requirements. 

Significantly, by drawing this much energy from the sun’s rays, the brand says it will be able to eliminate the equivalent of up to 20 000 tons of C0generated per year from the manufacturing process. 

The local installation that incorporates up to 59 tons of steel and 315 tons of aluminium is seen as an important step towards the Ford Motor Company’s global sustainability drive to incorporate 100% carbon-free electricity by 2035 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Larger, more versatile and generally more robust than the model it replaces, the new Ford Ranger will also introduce a more spacious cabin. It’s set to continue its local monthly sales battle with the Toyota Hilux that’s assembled 600 km away in Durban.  

The Rentech brand was established in 2001 as a dedicated provider of renewable energy products and services. Focused on supplying local and selected African markets, our product range includes inverters, lithium batteries, lead-acid batteries, and PV panels of the highest quality. We provide expert advice to assist customers in choosing the best product solutions, appropriate for specific applications and requirements.

Editorial credit: Vadim Rodnev /