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Ford Bronco 2021: Hardcore off-roader attacks Jeep Wrangler

Extremely high demand
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F ord's new Bronco is in great demand: The first production batch of the First Edition of 3,500 copies was sold out on the day of the presentation. So Ford has doubled production capacity to 7,000 copies - and the Bronco is sold out again. Ford has not yet announced whether a further increase is possible. The Americans are now offering that everyone can withdraw from their reservation and receive a full refund of the 100 dollars (currently the equivalent of around 86 euros) reservation fee. Apparently, however, hardly anyone takes advantage of the option of resignation - after all, the purchase of the First Edition is also linked to hopes of future increases in value. US market observers believe it is likely that dealers who have been able to secure copies of the First Edition will resell them at a hefty price premium.

Ford Bronco as official Jeep Wrangler opponent

The wait (especially in the US) is over, the new Ford Bronco is revealed. What could already be suspected with numerous Erlkönig pictures and information leaked on the Internet is now official: With the Bronco, Ford fires a broadside at the Jeep Wrangler and uses its vehicle concept as a blueprint: two and four-door models with removable doors, removable hardtop, robust Technology with ladder frame and rear rigid axle.

Ford Bronco returns to the origins

When Ford ended production of the Bronco in 1996 after a total of 30 years of construction, nothing was left of the original idea of ​​this vehicle series . The original Bronco from 1966 was a relatively compact, very off-road vehicle with rigid axles, which was positioned against the Jeep CJ (today's Wrangler). When the first generation was retired, Ford relied on the F-series pickup platform for cost reasons. Correspondingly, the bronco continued to swell over the years.

Robust off-road technology with ladder frame and rigid rear axle. The thick 35-inch rubbers, however, cost extra

The tremendous success of the Jeep Wrangler in North America, where Jeep has been producing at full speed for years ( In 2019, around 230,000 Wranglers sold in the USA alone), naturally aroused desires at Ford. In 2016, it was finally announced at the Detroit Motor Show that the Bronco would be revived.

On the one hand, the new Ford Bronco is reminiscent of its roots from the 1960s and is formally and conceptually very close to the original Bronco . On the other hand, Ford is of course familiar with the success of the four-door Jeep Wrangler Unlimited and therefore has a longer, family-friendly version with four doors for the two-door. The two models can be equipped with various off-road technology packages depending on customer requirements.

Independent wheel suspension at the front, but two differential locks

As a basis, the Ford Bronco has a mechanically switchable all-wheel drive, one is optional Transfer case with automatic all-wheel drive available. A selectable terrain reduction is always on board. In contrast to Jeep, Ford dispenses with a rigid front axle and installs an independent suspension there. However, connectable differential locks are available for both axles, which helps to compensate for the system-related deficits in the axle articulation.

Manual transmission and automatic are available, also two different all-wheel drive systems

Also optionally there is the' Trail Toolbox ' -Package in which several electronic driving aids are bundled. This includes, among other things, an off-road 'cruise control' with which you can concentrate on steering at a preset speed, as well as steering assistance in which the rear wheel on the inside of the bend is braked and thus improves the turning circle in tight terrain. There is also a mode for so-called 'One Pedal Driving'. Almost likeIn the case of an electric car, it should be possible to dispense with pressing the brake and acceleration /deceleration can be controlled solely via the gas pedal.

For the off-road values, Ford promises, among other things, 29 centimeters of ground clearance, without mentioning where this is measured - under the center of the vehicle or the rear differential as the lowest point. However, the Bronco will be available with 35-inch tires for an extra charge, which will undoubtedly provide plenty of air under the keel. Ford specifies the maximum fording depth at 85 centimeters. Underride fenders and side rock sliders as sill protection are available as a surcharge option, although these are actually meant seriously and are not just for show like the pseudo-plastic panels of modern SUVs.

The half-doors with peephole will probably cost extra, the standard are closed all-steel doors

Special Ford advertises the massive underrun protection measures by having tested them on individual stages of the 'King of the Hammers' competition - a very popular and extremely difficult off-road race in the USA, in which rocks some meters high have to be overcome.

New Ford Bronco with two petrol engines

As drive There are initially two petrol engines to choose from. The 2.3-liter four-cylinder Ecoboost engine is specified with 270 SAE PS and 420 Newton meters of torque. For the optional 2.7-liter V6, the figures are 310 hp and an astonishing 542 Newton meters. There are two transmissions to choose from, with the manual transmission being the more interesting variant: It is a seven-speed transmission in which the first gear is particularly low as a 'crawl' gear and is positioned exactly opposite the reverse gear - a configuration that, for example the VW Iltis got on the way at the time as a replacement for the ground reduction that was missing there. With this configuration, it is possible to quickly switch between reverse and forward travel in one switching level in order to rock a car stuck in the mud or sand. If you want to miss this fun, you can optionally order a ten-speed automatic.

With the short first gear, Ford has also implemented a trick: while with the Jeep Wranglera transfer case with a 4: 1 reduction in the terrain level, which is subject to a surcharge, causes the ratio to be super short when driving off-road, this part is taken over by the creep gear in the left shifting level at Ford. This gives the new Bronco a maximum overall ratio of 94.8: 1, which is quite spectacular even among competent off-road vehicles. So you can maneuver in difficult terrain with minimum speed and maximum torque.

For fresh air fun, Ford relies on a solution with a removable hard top - like the model from Jeep. The hardtops (painted on request) consist of several units above the front and rear seats and can only be partially removed while the main part remains mounted behind the roll bar. In the case of the four-door models, the hardtop costs a surcharge; these are supplied with a fabric roof as standard.

While the interior is designed to be particularly robust with washable and dust-proof surfaces and components, the electronic gadgets are equipped with modern technology. The new Ford Bronco gets the fourth generation of the Ford SYNC system, which among other things allows over-the-air updates. A new function integrates a navigation system for off-road routes. According to Ford, there are over 1,000 different off-road trails available that can be driven as easily with the Bronco as with street navigation.

Ford Bronco (2021) - the price

A total of five different ones Equipment variants are available for the new Ford Bronco, and there will also be an exclusive First Edition version at the start of sales. The only price communicated so far is that of the three-door base model at 29,995 dollars, the equivalent of around 26,400 euros. In this point, too, Ford is based on the Jeep Wrangler in the USA, which allows conclusions to be drawn about the prices of higher equipment lines and the four-door versions.

The Ford Bronco cannot currently be ordered, production is scheduled for spring 2021 begin. However, prospective buyers can make a reservation for $ 100 and place the actual order at the end of the year in order to be among the first to receive the new Ford Bronco. Reservations are currently possible for all model variants.


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