Do we have some old-school car lovers out there? Yes? Well, one thing is for sure, we like nostalgia, and we have fond memories of Ford Bronco. The Blue Oval company decided to breathe life into one of their most prominent cars of the 90s. This carmaker recently confirmed that the Bronco SUV and the Ranger are on their way to North American showrooms. Considering how low gas prices are there is going to be a platter of buyers.
When it comes to the Ranger, we expect an Americanization and face-lift applied to the vehicle. Ford just had to revive these models considering their popularity in the US as well as in the rest of world. However it’s harder to predict what form the Bronco will take because one thing is for sure- it will be a brand new car. The bad news is that we haven’t yet seen this SUV on roads or tests and to make things even worse officials haven’t shared many words on the matter.
Ford Bronco Looks
We think that if Ford wants to try and imitate the retro look of the Bronco, they wouldn’t make a mistake, mostly because that’s a legendary car. Remember OJ’s infamous attempt to escape the police? We do too. But, it seems like the carmaker will design a 21st-century vehicle which won’t have many similarities to the one from the past.
When it comes to the nameplate, the company used it a couple of times over the period between 1966 and 1996. Some things changed, but one thing was always the same. It came with two doors. We don’t know yet whether this tradition will be continued or not. We do know that if there are many customers who like four-door option better but it would be unwise to spoil the tradition. Certainly one of the options is to offer both two and four door versions.
We remember that old Broncos had a removable roof. Again, on this matter, we don’t have any official info, however, we have two information’s about this. One coming from allegedly a Ford research and development team member and another from ‘The Truth About Cars‘ website. The former shed some light on the matter via Reddit saying that the company is likely to opt for a fixed roof. On the other hand ‘reliable sources’ from ‘The Truth About Cars’ claim otherwise. They say that it will have a system called Air Roof. That system is made out of six individual panels that are removable. Interesting concept.
It has been Ford’s practice in recent years to use aluminum to reduce the weight of their heaviest cars, so we think that Bronco will also see some benefits from this as they are most likely to use that material for this car as well. Now we don’t say that the whole car will be made out of aluminum but if they decide to use it for body panels that would boost performance and fuel economy.
The body and power of new Bronco
This upcoming vehicle will most likely have a body-on-frame construction and will ride on an improved frame that is used with the Ranger however it won’t be similar to the one from Everest SUV that is sold in Thailand, Australia, etc. The company will have to put in some additional effort because using the same thing for a new Bronco just isn’t worthy of the nameplate and history it bears.
A chief technical officer of Ford, Raj Nair had something to say on the matter: ‘People have an idea of what a Bronco should be, and certainly we have an idea of what a Bronco should be, so we’re looking forward to bringing that to our customers.’
People now know Bronco mostly because it was used as a getaway car (OJ Simpson case) but the original idea behind the SUV is to create a good 4×4 off-roader that will take out most of the competition. We are sure that the next-gen model will strive for that and how can it achieve it? Well, a good ground clearance, solid axles (courtesy of Dana) and four-wheel drive should do the trick.
However, specs are still unconfirmed at the moment but if it was up to us to speculate what this car would run on we’d choose the combination of a turbocharged EcoBoost V6 engine and 10-speed automatic transmission. An alternative would be a 2018 F-150 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6. Have in mind that a turbo four is highly improbable to happen because of the car’s weight and size.
Americans always loved good open-top off-roaders and let’s take a look at possible rivals in that field. In the 60s and 70s, the competition was fierce, and there’s no doubt about it. It consisted of names from GMC, Jeep, Chevrolet, Dodge, Plymouth and International-Harvester.
Nowadays the only 4×4 in this field (roofless) is Jeep Wrangler. Surely the new Ford will restart an old rivalry by fighting the next generation Wrangler (its debut is expected before the end of the year).
Now, this looks like a two opponent fight however the rumors have been going on about GMC entering the battlefield. They are unofficial but really interesting. Will GMC return with a car in that segment? Nothing is certain now, but it would surely make things more interesting. Its parent company General Motors thought about it but this potential model is still nothing but a sketch on a drawing board, and it has been like that for years.
Launch date of Ford Bronco?
The Michigan Assembly Plant is the venue where the production of new Bronco will start and it is scheduled for 2023. Its debut will be a year after the Ranger’s (US model), and we expect first vehicles in showrooms just in time for the 2023 model year.