Twenty years after production on the Ford Bronco was discontinued, fans can once again look forward to a new Bronco hitting the road for the 2020 season. The announcement that we are within a couple of years of seeing a new version of the famous proto-sport utility vehicle that pioneered many design features that have since become standard in vehicles around the world has had many industry watchers earnestly speculating about how the Bronco will innovate Ford’s current vehicle line up.
When the first Broncos rolled off production lines in 1966, their rugged off-road abilities and chunky design marked them out as Ford’s answer to the Jeep CJ models, and over the next thirty years the Bronco generated a devoted following for its versatility and power. Before SUV was a household word, the Bronco played an important role in providing a hybrid alternative to trucks and sedans, capable of managing rough terrain without sacrificing passenger space and comfort. When the Bronco was discontinued in 1996 to make way for the Ford Expedition, it signalled the end of an era and the start of the SUV boom of the late 1990s.
For years there was speculation about whether or not the Bronco would have the kind of resurrection that other discontinued brands like the Lincoln Continental have seen, and if you follow car news and information you will know that when the news broke at last year’s Detroit Auto Show that the Bronco would be making a comeback there was a flurry of commentary in the automotive press.
Ford has been coy about details, but there is active speculation about whether the new Bronco will build off of the best elements in Ford vehicles like the Everest and Ranger, or whether it will feature a completely new design. Advance press suggests that the Bronco will get an off-road edition, which suggests that, like the first Broncos back in the 1960s, Ford sees Jeep models like the Wrangler as its main competition. It has also been confirmed that it will have a removable roof, and, unlike the original Bronco, won’t be a two-door. Pricing information has not been released either, but it is expected that it will be within the $30,000-range.
The photographs that have emerged all show a vehicle that retains the boxy lines of its predecessors, as well as iconic flourishes like the spare wheel attached to the back door. However, its more rounded edges and modern detailing gives it a surprisingly fresh look which is sure to turn heads when it hits the road.
While it is too early to say how well the new Bronco will perform on the road, the information currently available paints a picture of a capable 4×4 SUV that can go up against the best the market has to offer. For fans of Ford’s classic line ups from the late twentieth century, there is a lot to be excited about, and we can expect the anticipation to keep building in the months leading up to its official release next year.