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Just happened and requires maintenance, I'm just looking for a good starting point?

94' Ford Ranger 4 cylinder driving at 55 mph looses power in 4th gear, down shift to 3rd, still loosing power and dies out completely. Try to restart, but doesn't even turn over. My first thought is a fuel issue, am I on the right track? Half a tank of fuel, but I'm not sure when the filter was changed last.... I plan to start with that. If the fuel filter replacement doesn't fix my problem, where should I look to next... fuel pump?
 

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I second that one, sounds like charging system or battery. Try turning the lights on inside the truck and then turn the key over to start. Do the lights go out? If so, it would indicate an electrical problem.
 

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I'd drop a 302 in that thing! rangers are awesome when you shove a V8 into them!
 

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One of my escorts did that a couple years back. it was combination of electrical, and compression. i fixed the compression first, and it was fine for about a week. then something went on the electrical end. i think it was the VSS shorting out, which caused the rev limiter to spike, and shut the engine down... it was a weird phenomenon.
it was in my 95...
 
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