Ford Bronco - History of the model
The story of the iconic off-road vehicle starts with Donald Frey and Lee Iacocca, the great minds who designed Ford Mustang, designed the Bronco as a vehicle which can go anywhere and do anything. They released it in three different body styles: station wagon, a half-cab and a roadster.
1966-1977 Bronco First Generation
After its release in 1966, almost immediately one of its body styles became more popular than the others. The three-door wagon was the people’s choice. In 1968, Ford took the roadster out of the market and in 1972, they also discontinued the half-cab which wasn’t well received. From the factory, they could equip the Bronco with a variety of accessories, including a snowplough, a winch, and a posthole digger. Broncos came with 4x4 drivetrain and a vast variety of engines. The first year of its production reaped brilliant success with the selling of near 24 thousand units, but the most popular year was 1974, with 26 thousand units sold.
1978-1979 Bronco Second Generation
Bronco’s second generation was a shortened F-100 with a removable hardtop. The V8 powering the vehicle made it powerful, but also expensive for maintenance and driving. Although this generation was very short-lived, it was the last one with a solid front axle and round headlights.
1980-1986 Bronco Third Generation
The new Bronco was a smaller and lighter than its predecessor, but Ford kept it as a full-size SUV. The new Bronco had a six-cylinder option besides the well-known V8s. It used the F-150 as a base. With the independent front suspension, people could use the Bronco as their daily driver and also take it to the highway besides going off-road. Because of its proportions and weight distribution, the Bronco had a tendency to rollover. That was its main issue, which costed Ford 113 million dollars in settling down 334 lawsuits.
1987-1991 Bronco Fourth Generation
With the evolution of the F-series, which provided the base for the Bronco, the Bronco also got updates. The fuel injection was now electronic, it got safety features like rear anti-lock brakes added. The powerful V8 engine gave the SUV enormous amount of towing capacity (3400kg).
1992-1996 Bronco Fifth Generation
The fifth generation of Broncos paid attention to safety a lot more than its predecessors. They added additional front crumple zones, three-point seatbelts, driver-side airbag. Probably the most confusing safety measure was the decision of removing any reference of the removable top from the owner’s manual.
The Bronco attained infamy from the police car chase, which O. J. Simpson led through L.A., but O.J. wasn’t responsible for killing the Bronco. The sales actually increased after the police chase. The actual reason for the Bronco’s death is that fewer people wanted to buy a two-door utility vehicles.
2021- Bronco Sixth Generation
After many years of being dead, Ford resurrected the Bronco. The new modern design of the car is using the traditional Bronco as a reference, keeping its signature look and body style. The new Bronco came for the first time in the model's history with a 4-door option and a classic 2-door. The doors and the roof are removable. They can be stored in the trunk. Ford equipped the Bronco with 2 turbo engines and 2 types of transmission. The 2.3 l EcoBoost was the only one available with the 7-speed manual, which is a normal 6-speed gearbox with additional slow speed for crawling. The 2.7 l V6 bi-turbo engine was available only with the 10-speed automatic. The Bronco features a rear differential lock was fitted as a standard while Ford offered the front locking differential as an option.