I got my 02 Dakota extended cab, v8, 4x4, for $6500 about 2 months ago... had about 100k and its in really good shape. Well it was, until we got into a pileup in it on the turnpike but its being fixed haha
Ford Rangers are a pretty small truck. I have an 03 Dakota and I got it for 14,000. It was only that expensive because it only had 30,000 miles. Like Mark said you can get an 02 with 75-100k of miles for under 7 grand.
what do you want to do with it? I have a truck and a car and they both serve very different purposes. My daily car is a basic civic hatchback that gets over 35 mpg and can kinda fit 5 people. My truck i only use on the weekends and is a S-10 but can really only hold 2 people somtimes 3 but not very comfortable. But it does hold 2 big bikes or 3 minis and gear. And its a 4 cylinder but still only gets 25 mpg.
I would pick what type of car and what purpose you are going to be doing with it and then go from their. If you are planning to carry alot of people alot of the time or need good gas millage then a truck isn't goign to be the best choice. But if you need to haul around your bikes then its either a truck or get a trailer. $6000 can get you a good realiable used car/truck so that is a good price range.
just picked up a 4dr 94 LX Bone Stock(and staying that way)..almost 400miles to a tank ..with gas over $3.00 I am loving it. Next week it gets a hitch and a small utility trailor and i will have no problem afford gas to get out to those far races! If gas/money i an issue...any old honda that was not raped by a kid is the way to go. Parts are super cheap and it is the easiest car i have ever worked on.