Ford got a lot of nostalgic SUV fans excited when it was announced that plans were in place for the re-launch of their iconic Bronco.
That was two years ago. And while there has been a great deal of speculation about the look and composition of the vehicle, about all we really knew, up until this week, is that we’d have to wait at least until the 2019 Detroit Auto Show in January for a first look at the Bronco.
That was until AutoGuide.com published some photos from a dealer meeting in Las Vegas showing what the new Broncos could look like. The images show a four-door SUV with much softer look than the rugged models last produced in 1996. This led MotorAuthority.com to publish a report, supposedly confirmed by those close to the brand, that these photos are actually of a smaller “Baby Bronco”, not the actual Bronco.
Some are even speculating that these photos could represent a potential line-up of new Broncos that will compete with a number of current SUVs.
Additional speculation surrounds the roof. It’s rumored that the new Bronco or Broncos will still provide a convertible option, but theories range from a complete, six-piece removeable roof, to a more traditional look that will only uncover the front seat.
Perhaps the most identifiable trait of the Bronco is also up for debate. While these images don’t match the previous amount of ground clearance, rumors suggest that the four-wheel-drive vehicles will sit as high as the originals and perhaps feature upgraded, solid axles to preserve the off-roading legacy.
The motor is also up for discussion with many prognosticators betting on a turbocharged EcoBoost V6 or a turbodiesel V6. However, some hardcore enthusiasts are adamant about a larger V8 option. And then, of course, there’s the crowd speculating that Ford has plans for a gasoline-electric hybrid version of the Bronco.
Back to what we do know – production is tentatively scheduled to start in Ford’s Michigan assembly plant in 2020, in time for the 2021 model year. Base models are expected to start at about $30,000.
Ford, by the way, has not officially commented on the “leaked” photos.