Anonymous Ford Engineer Leaks Juicy Details about the Ford Bronco
EcoBoost power, four doors, and 20 inches of wading depthby Mark McNabb, on
The 2020 Ford Bronco has been (unofficially) confirmed as a four-door SUV based on the upcoming 2019 Ford Ranger pickup and will be powered by the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6 matched with robust off-road capabilities like 19.5 inches of water fording – all for a price starting around $30,000. The information comes from a Ford engineer who spoke to Gear Patrol on the condition of anonymity. The insider also divulged some telling truths about the Bronco’s revival, including that Ford is now starting the third design phase for the iconic SUV, having not been satisfied with the first two because it “looks too much like the Wrangler.” Typically, vehicles only get a single design phase before being pushed into production.
The Bronco’s correlation to the Jeep Wrangler isn’t surprising since Ford used the Wrangler Unlimited as its benchmark in off-road capability, save for its rock-crawling abilities, claims the Ford insider. “If you’re familiar with the Ford Troller, out of Brazil, that’s the basic concept, but it’ll look like a four-door version of that,” the engineer told Gear Patrol. A two-door version isn’t happening because Ford doesn’t think it would sell. Power will come from “something like” the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6. In the 2018 F-150, that EcoBoost makes 325 horsepower and 375 pound-feet of torque – respectable numbers in a Wrangler-sized SUV. Sadly, the engineer says the Bronco won’t be the hard-core off-roader many are hoping. Rather, it’s designed primarily as a comfortable on-road, family-friendly SUV, though sprinkled with off-road hardware. When asked about a Raptor version, the insider said, “it’s not even in the works yet.”
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What we Know
The leaked information coming from a supposed Ford engineer familiar with the Bronco project is both good and bad. We like the confirmation of our speculation regarding the Bronco’s use of the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6, but cringe hearing it will only be offered with four doors and it won’t be as hardcore as we hoped. While disappointing, Ford is probably smart to cater to the mall-crawling segment of the SUV-buying public rather than the (relatively) smaller subset who actually use a 4WD to its fullest. Still, like the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, Ford should at least offer a hard-core trim level with locking differentials, knobby tires, skid plates, rock rails, and other handy components. Perhaps that’s actually the plan and this engineer didn’t feel like disclosing that news. Or perhaps he’s a double agent sent by Ford to disseminate false information to stir the pot and monitor reactions. Who knows…
|Ford 2.7-liter EcoBoost V-6 from 2018 Ford F-150|
As if that’s not enough bad news, perhaps the most concerning information leaked by Gear Patrol’s anonymous source inside Ford is this: Ford is suffering from “paralysis by analysis.” Apparently, so many people are working on the project that no one can agree on the direction the Bronco should take. The insider says everyone has an opinion on what the Bronco “should be” that the ultimate decision makers are having a hard time agreeing on the finished product. That explains why the Bronco is currently undergoing its third design phase – a step in a normal vehicle’s development that is only completed once. This is completely counter to how Ford undertook the revival of the GT supercar. Only a select handful of Ford employees even knew the project existed, let alone had clearance in assisting with its development.
|Interior from 2015 - 2018 Ford Ranger|
At this point, all we can hope is Ford pulls itself together and builds an SUV worthy of the Bronco name and one capable enough to go head-to-head with the upcoming 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL. Of course, we’ll have to wait. Ford has officially announced the Bronco will return for the 2020 model year, meaning it will debut sometime in late 2018 or early 2019. And whatever happens, we hope the final Bronco design looks as awesome as Bronco6G.com’s fantastic renderings.
|Rendering by Bronco6G|
Read our speculative review on the 2020 Ford Bronco
Read our full review on the 2014 Ford Troller
Read our full review on the 2015-2018 Ford Ranger (global)
Read our full review on the 2018 Ford F150
Source: Gear Patrol