Can a Ford Ranger Be Flat Towed? (2019-2020-2021, 4×4, Tips)

Flat towing seems to be the most popular method used by RV owners. If your vehicle can be flat towed you avoid adding more weight and more equipment to your RV. It pays to investigate whether your vehicle can be flat towed or not.

There is a little debate on this topic. Some people say only the Ford Ranger 4 x 4 can be flat towed while others state you can flat tow a 4 x 2 model. They hedge that statement by saying, ‘with caution’. In other words, it may not be in the best interest of your vehicle to flat-tow a 4 x 2.

To learn more about whether or not you can flat tow a Ford Ranger between the years 2019 and 2021, just keep reading our article. It provides the necessary information so you know what to do if you buy this model of truck.

Can a 2020 Ford Ranger 4x4 Be Flat Towed?


The answer is yes but there is a long set of instructions telling you how you can do this feat. Modern cars and trucks are not like the older models where you simply put the vehicle in neutral and hook it up.

Today’s cars and trucks are filled with sophisticated equipment and the Ford Ranger 2019 to 2021 is just one of those vehicles. There are at least 5 steps you have to take before the truck’s dashboard gives you the message “NEUTRAL TOW ENABLED, LEAVE TRANSMISSION IN NEUTRAL.”

Those steps will come later in this article but be forewarned you must complete those steps correctly to be able to flat-tow a Ranger 4 x 4. But that alert is not the last step in the process.

Make sure you read all the instructions in your manual and do not stop at those words. Even though it is a tough truck, if you make a mistake in this process, you can damage your vehicle.

Flat Towing Ford Ranger Manual

This link will take you to the instructions in the Ford Ranger manual. Those instructions start on page 211 and on the first page of the instructions you get the warnings that you can only tow forward.

Also, you are told that the maximum towing speed is 35 mph and the longest you can tow the Ford ranger is 50 miles. These instructions are for emergency towing only. There is another set of instructions for when you want to flat tow your 4 x 4 behind an RV.

There was another piece of advice you should follow before you go to the instructions for towing. You need to put your interior air system in recirculation mode. This prevents any exhaust from entering the cab of the Ford Ranger.

Unlike other cars and trucks, you are not to remove the negative battery cable from the battery. If you do you will most likely interfere with the transfer case from shifting correctly. Read all the information in the manual to make sure you know how to flat-tow this vehicle.

Flat Tow Ford Ranger Automatic


The first thing you need to know about Ford trucks is that the 2020 models all have the same 10-speed automatic transmission. There is no manual transmission offered by Ford for this vehicle.

Second, while the 4 x 4 is probably the easiest model to tow, all Ford automatic trucks can be towed. You just have to follow instructions to get the transmission ready for towing.

The Ford truck website has placed a video on its instruction page if you need images to help you complete the process. The next section will publish those instructions so you have them at your fingertips when you are ready to tow your vehicle.

Print them out if you do not think you can remember them. Watch the video after that to help you understand the printed instructions. Place the printed instructions n your truck for safe keeping. Some people’s memories are not that great and that happens at any age in life.

The reason we say this is because if you make a misstep, you could damage important components in your truck and give yourself costly repairs.

Ford Ranger Flat Tow Instructions

The first step is to hook your vehicle to your RV. You do not want it rolling around on you while you are trying to hook the vehicle up after you set it in neutral. Here are the instructions so you can print them out. We took them off the Ford Truck website but if you compare them with the manual linked above, they are basically the same:

Enter Accessory Mode. If you have a Start/Stop button, press it with your foot OFF the brake. If you have a key, turn it to the On/Accessory position.

Press and hold your brake & select 2H in your 4WD selector, and shift into Neutral.

Access your truck’s Menu, navigate to Settings (Ranger) or Advanced Settings (Raptor), then Vehicle and Neutral Tow.

Hold the OK button until your display states ‘Neutral Tow Enabled. Leave Transmission in Neutral.’ (If you don’t see this message, start over.)

Exit Accessory Mode. If you have a Start/Stop button, press it once with your foot OFF the brake. If you have a key, turn it as far toward off as possible but leave the key in the ignition.

What you do not see on the website but will see in the manual are the following words:

If you do not see the message in the display, you must switch the ignition off and perform the procedure again from the beginning” (pg.212)

How To Flat-Tow a 2021 Ford Ranger 4x4


There is special equipment you will need to tow one of these trucks. Those pieces of equipment include, at least for the 2021 model, base plates, safety cables, tow bar, wiring harness, and supplemental braking system.

You have to make sure the truck is secured correctly or you may face penalties and fines if the highway patrol spots you. You may also need to add a lube pump to the transmission to make sure that part gets enough lubrication during the trip.

You can check with your local Ford dealer to see what pieces of equipment you will need to ensure the tow goes smoothly and without damage to the truck. There are plenty of retail outlets that will have those needed parts so they should be easy to find.

Can You Flat Tow a Ford Ranger Behind a Motorhome?

Yes, it is possible. After reading this article, you can see how involved this process is. You will need to follow the instructions given in the manual to the letter. Plus, you will need to buy or rent the special equipment to secure the vehicle.

This is not an easy process due to tall the steps involved and the time needed to install that equipment. But it can be done and you will have your Ford Ranger with you when you need to make those sightseeing trips or market errands for more supplies.

The key is going to be the weight of the truck. Your RV will have to be rated to tow that much or more weight before you can successfully tow this vehicle. As we have said many times before, weight is king and the final authority on whether or not you can tow a vehicle.

Towing a Ford Ranger Behind an RV


Once you figure out that your RV can tow this vehicle. Then you go through all the steps to get the truck ready for towing, you will find that towing a Ford Ranger will be like towing any other vehicle.

It should follow your RV without any issues if you connected the parts correctly. Just make sure you do not do any sharp sudden turns. If you are not good at towing a trailer, let alone a vehicle, then it is best not to attempt this.

There are plenty of risks involved and you will need experience towing to make sure your nerves do not create a problem for you. make sure to read the manual carefully so that you know all the steps involved in towing a Ford Ranger between the years 2017 and 2022.

The modern equipment makes it tougher to tow these days than it ever was before.

Some Final Words

It is the new technology that takes simple jobs and turns them into a logistical nightmare. The more complicated the components, the more complicated simple tasks like towing become.

Make sure to read all the instructions, warnings, and notes when trying to tow a Ford Ranger. Those pieces of information are there to protect your vehicle from experiencing any damage.

If you do the procedures right, then your towing time should be okay.

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