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Ford finally debuts Bronco line-up

Ford targets Jeep Wrangler with new Bronco, not coming to Australia

15 Jul 2020

FORD has at long last unveiled and detailed its new Bronco off-roader, with the new model available in both two and four-door guises for the first time ever.


Despite being based on the same platform as the current generation Ford Ranger pick-up truck – read Australian developed – the new Bronco will not be coming to Australia at this stage going on previous comments made by Ford Australia.


“We have no plans to introduce Bronco in Australia,” a Ford Australia spokesperson told GoAuto back in January.


Designed to take the fight to the Jeep Wrangler, Ford says the new Bronco is built with “the toughness of an F-Series truck and performance spirit of Mustang”.


On the performance aspect of that statement, power is rated at 201kW and 420Nm courtesy of Ford’s turbocharged 2.3-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder engine paired with either a seven-speed manual transmission or optional 10-speed automatic.


A 231kW/542Nm twin-turbocharged 2.7-litre V6 petrol engine is also available, paired exclusively with the 10-speed auto.


In terms of toughness and off-road ability, seven drive modes – Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand, with Baja, Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl – will be fitted as standard to make sure the Bronco can get just about anywhere while a 94.75:1 crawl ratio should ensure no reasonable incline is too steep.


To complement the varying body styles, there are two different 4x4 systems available for the new Bronco with one being more advanced or capable than the other.


The standard system utilises a two-speed electronic shift-on-the-fly transfer case while the optional advanced system features a two-speed electromechanical transfer case that adds an auto mode for on-demand engagement between 2H and 4H.


Maximum ground clearance for the two-door is rated at 295mm while the four-door sits just 3mm lower with 292mm of clearance.


That generous ground clearance affords the Bronco a claimed best-in-class wading depth of up to 851mm with breakover and departure angles pegged at 29 degrees and 37.2 degrees respectively.


In keeping with the seven drive modes, seven trim levels will be available to American customers, with those being Base, Big Bend, Black Diamond, Outer Banks, Wildtrak, Badlands and First Edition.


Not to make things any more confusing or complex, each variant is then available with a selection of different packages – standard, mid, high, lux or sasquatch – with varying levels of equipment for an equally varied array of purposes and applications, although not all variants have access to all of the packages.


Exposed tow-hooks front and rear and an integrated front winch mount ensure maximum versatility and self-recovery possibilities while a raft of different underbody guards protect the drivetrain, driveline and fuel tank in extreme conditions.


Suspension duties are taken care of by an independent arrangement at the front and a coil-sprung solid axle at the rear with travel-sensitive Bilstein dampers in all four corners.


To add an extra layer of adventure a uniqueness to the Bronco, Ford has fitted all models with multi-panel removable roofs – three-piece on two-door, four-piece on four-door – in the likeness of the original.


Taking a leaf out of the Jeep Gladiator’s book, all Broncos also feature removable doors with the added bonus on four-door models to be able to stow the removed doors on-board.


Inside the cabin, designers have tried to merge some of the retro features of the original Bronco with a new design language and modern-day technology.


The digital instrument cluster for example is laid out in a similar fashion to the original with simple yet functional and easy-to-read dials.


Given the Bronco’s blatant ruggedness, all of the interior surfaces and trims have been designed to be tough and durable, with some variants even scoring rubberised floor mats with drainage ports.


Mounted high on the dashboard is an 8.0 or 12.0-inch (variant dependant) infotainment screen powered by Ford’s latest-gen Sync4 system from which drivers can navigate the FordPass Performance app and make use of its new trail maps feature.


The mapping database contains more than 1000 curated trail maps from NeoTreks’ AccuTerra Maps, Trails Offroad trail guides and FunTreks trail guides.


While the Bronco isn’t slated for an Australian introduction, reservations have opened in the USA with prices kicking off from $US29,995 ($A42,687) for the two-door and $US34,695 ($A49,364) for the four-door.

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