I am afraid the extended range would not solve the signal strength drops , it will only help if you are dropping due to timming advance meaning you are serving greater than the normal cell range of GSM which is 32 km and have good signal.
The normal cell range of the GSM cell is TA of 0-63 TS , which gives you max distance 32 km.
So if you have a boomer site in the rural area that goes beyond 32 km and has max TA of 63 will loose the Timming syn after 32km and will drop due to TA even with good signal strength.
To solve the drops due to TA we put the cell in the extended range with MAX TA upto 127? which can double you range from 32 to 64 km, howvever the capacity will be cut into half also.