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by Tim Beissmann

Ford has released images and details of the 2012 Ford Ranger Wildtrak ahead of its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show tonight.

Designed and developed in Australia, the all-new Ford Ranger will be produced in Thailand, South Africa and Argentina from the middle of this year and delivered to more than 180 different markets around the world.

Ford says the Ranger Wildtrak will be among the most high-tech compact pick-ups available in the world, with satellite navigation, Bluetooth voice control and a rear view camera system included as standard features.

The advanced infotainment system incorporates Bluetooth audio streaming, USB and iPod connectivity, a five-inch colour screen, and voice control functions for the radio, CD, iPod, USB, phone and air-conditioning systems.

The cabin offers 23 storage compartments, and Ford says the glove box will swallow a 16-inch laptop and the centre console bin will keep six drink cans cool.

The seats are finished in a combination of leather and woven cloth with ventilated sections and contrast ‘Wildtrak Orange’ stitching.

From the outside, the Wildtrak has a paint job and front grille design inspired by the Ford F-150 Raptor from the US. The dark accents are continued to the side mirrors, door handles and side air vents to distinguish it from every angle.

The Wildtrak sits on 18-inch alloy wheels and comes with roof racks and a sports hoop, as well as unique badging and graphics to set it apart as the Ranger’s range-topping lifestyle variant.

Ford Australia’s Neil McDonald all but confirmed the range-topping Wildtrak model would continue to be a part of the Ranger line-up when the all-new Ranger is launched in Australia in the third quarter of 2011.

“With the Wildtrak available in the current line-up, you could make the deduction that it would be highly likely to be available [in the new line-up],” Mr McDonald said.

The all-new Ford Ranger will be powered by two different Duratorq TDCi diesel engines and come with the option of six-speed manual or automatic transmissions.

The 2.2-litre four-cylinder engine will produce 110kW of power and 375Nm of torque, while the new 3.2-litre five-cylinder unit will top the range with 147kW and 470Nm of torque. Selected variants will be capable of achieving a towing capacity of 3350kg.

Safety also promises to be class leading, with Electronic Stability Control to be fitted standard.

Stay tuned as CarAdvice brings you all the news from the unveiling of the 2012 Ford Ranger Wildtrak at the Geneva Motor Show later this evening.