The reborn Ford Bronco will have a strong Australian connection, because it will be based on a version of the body-on-frame T6 architecture that underpins the Ranger and Everest.
As Ford followers will know already, the T6 platform and the two vehicles it presently handles were developed by Ford Asia Pacific’s regional R&D hub based in Melbourne. The Ranger has leaf rear suspension, while the Everest has a more SUV-friendly setup with a Watt's linkage.
Unlike the Ranger and Everest, development of the Bronco is being led by Ford’s US operations centre in Dearborn, Michigan. However, the T6-based Bronco is promised to be a global car, so right-hand drive is clearly plausible.
As we reported from Ford’s press conference at the Detroit motor show this morning, the Ford Bronco 4x4 will return in 2020 – 24 years after the old F-Series-based model shuffled off.
“Bronco will be a no-compromise midsize 4x4 utility for thrill seekers who want to venture way beyond the city,” said Ford president of The Americas, Joe Hinrichs. Whether this means it's simply a reworked version of the next Everest or a standalone vehicle remains to be seen. We'd strongly expect the latter.
“It will be a true, tough Bronco,” Ford executive chairman Bill Ford added. “A real off-road vehicle.” Not much there...
Additionally, whether it sports a version of the Ranger's 3.2-litre five-cylinder diesel engine, or a petrol-only offering for US tastes, remains to be seen. It's worth noting Ford has also confirmed a 3.0-litre V6 diesel for the F-150, a model-first.
We also know that the Bronco will be manufactured at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan, with production likely to start in 2019, the same year as the Aussie-designed Ranger finally launches in the US.
As we reported last year, Ford has pledged to launch four new nameplates into its global SUV line-up, in segments it doesn’t presently cover, by 2020.
Pictured: Original Ford Bronco
One of these will be the Bronco, designed to challenge the Jeep Wrangler, while another will be a pure-electric small crossover with a 400km range due in 2020.
But what might a 2019 Ford Bronco look like? Bronco6G previously came up with a nifty rendering, which we've run atop the story. Thanks guys.