By on June 21, 2020

At this point, if Ford wants to keep the upcoming Bronco and Bronco Sport under wraps until their respective unveilings, it had best invest in surplus anti-aircraft batteries — or just never leave the confines of company-owned production facilities. Even those walls have proven a porous barrier, however.

As the weekend dawned, drone-provided aerial spy photos appeared of the two dissimilar Broncos congregating with a Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 out in the desert, far — at least, one would assume — from prying eyes.

The photos, later enhanced by forum members, appear on, with the two-door Bronco shown in a dazzling shade of yellow and contrasting black top. The four-door (only), unibody Bronco Sport underwhelms compared to its body-on-frame cousin, decked out in a red-on-black ensemble. That model has already leaked to the internet via ground-based cameras, much like the more off-road-oriented Bronco.

Scheduled for a July 13th reveal (initially, July 9th was the debit date), the Bronco’s specs and abilities have been generously fleshed out via a number of leaks, though undisclosed details no doubt remain in the offing. Same, too, for the Bronco Sport, which adds a retro-inspired body to go with its Escape underpinnings.

The brawny ZR2 seen here no doubt serves as a benchmark for the Bronco, not the Bronco Sport.

Alas, there’s not much new to glean from these distant pics. Past sourcing and leaks have shown the base Bronco to be outfitted with a 2.3-liter Ecoboost four-cylinder mated to either a seven-speed manual (with crawler gear) or 10-speed automatic. We’re told the uplevel 2.7-liter Ecoboost V6 can only be had with the 10-speed. Front and rear locking differentials and sway bar disconnect, coupled with that crawler gear, short overhangs, and balloon-like off-road tires should aid any driver who dares take their priced buy into the rough.

The Bronco Sport will carry either a 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbo or a 2.0-liter unit, with removable roof panels, flip-up rear glass, and upgraded rubber and downsized wheels setting the model apart from its urbanized Escape sibling.


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21 Comments on “Eye in the Sky: Ford Bronco, Bronco Sport Not Safe Anywhere...”

  • avatar

    Ford’s PR people must be the best in the business.

    First “new Ford Bronco to be released on O.J.’s birthday!” gets written up in every mainstream (i.e. non-car enthusiast, for example I saw it on CNBC) outlet.

    Then “Ford Bronco launch moved back after O.J. mishap” gets ANOTHER round of stories in mainstream outlets.

    And now: grainy aerial photograph of new Ford Bronco “leaks.”

  • avatar

    Whether you personally like it or not, I expect the new Bronco will see impressive sales as it is clearly built to compete with the 2-door Jeep Wrangler. With its removable top, it competes well with the Wrangler’s fiberglass hard top and will give Ford fans their own customizable off-roader that isn’t on a full-sized truck chassis and can demonstrate the true agility of the short wheelbase, narrow-bodied rock crawler.

    I was never a fan of the truck-bodied version simply because it was so much bigger. Sure, you could put a huge engine under the hood but with that massive size, there were places it simply couldn’t go, compared to the smaller original.

    • 0 avatar

      Is the two-door Wrangler a hot seller? I’m trying to think of the last time I saw one.

      • 0 avatar

        Does everything have to be a hot seller? Like manuals, I’m glad when they’re offered, especially since they’re probably taking a loss on them.

        Likely the 2-doors don’t catch your eye. Some swear they never see base “stripper” regular-cab (fullsize) short bed pickups, but there’s not much there to command your attention (or distraction).

      • 0 avatar

        Something like 1/3 of Wranglers sold are still 2 doors. So it’s not a surprise to me that Ford is choosing to compete across the board.

        Still seems like an oversight to only have the 7 speed available with the base engine though.

  • avatar

    Manual FTW. Shame about the 2.7 though. That’s one of the few turbo engines offered with some spring in its step, outside of the hot-hatch segment.

  • avatar

    Why a black top, when it only gets hot as hell?

  • avatar

    Both vehicles look great. I think that the Bronco Sport is really going to step on the toes of the Escape and Edge

  • avatar

    Yawn. Much like the corona cold, the hysteria around these half baked crossovers is way overblown.

    With Fords history of decimating quality in favor of profits, there is little hope this won’t be a disaster similar to the Explorer/MKExplorer.

    It’s taken them forever to clone a Wrangler and stick a Ford logo on the front while forgetting to add a dash of quality to any aspect of the crossovers. But you can bet they will be severely overpriced.

    • 0 avatar

      Clone a Wrangler and stick a Ford logo on it? What part of Mars are you posting from? The new product is called ‘Bronco’and not Jeep – they want to bring back a Bronco for the 21st century. If anything, Ford would contemplate emulating Land Cruiser years before they’d want to be associated with Jeep. What I’m saying is that the current Jeep product is not living up to its former 1950s renown- just ask your favorite independent repair shop if you should buy one.

      • 0 avatar

        The new Wranglers are far outstripping their ’50s predecessors in everything short of repairability. Today they are capable of performing feats bone-stock that even their 20-year-old predecessors couldn’t do without several inches of lift and other excessive modifications… and do it with more passengers AND more cargo at the same time.

        Oh, there’s a lot to be said for simplicity… chicken wire and duct tape could just about repair anything on those old CJs. But we’re long past that now and FCA has made pretty sure we’re not going back there with the Kaiser-Willys licensed Mahindra throwback model.

      • 0 avatar

        He’s posting from Uranus.


    • 0 avatar

      Your “corona cold”… let’s put the numbers into perspective.

      The nuclear bomb in Hiroshima killed 130,000 people.
      COVID-19 has, as of this writing, killed 127,640 people in the United States.
      We’ve been nuked.
      The world death toll is just about to cross 500,000. That’s the equivalent of four Hiroshima nuclear bombs.

      The 9/11 attack on the Twin Tower killed 2,977 people, shut down the world’s airlines and resulted in years of war and tragic aftermath.
      Covid deaths to date in the US are the equivalent of 48 9/11 attacks.
      And what do we do – unite as a country to fight the enemy? No, we “reopen America again!” and as a result, get Twin Towered again twice a week.
      Dimwitted Americans who don’t understand numbers are partying like it’s 1999, and buying lottery tickets.

      So take your moronic minimizing attitude out and ride the bus, enjoy a night at a crowded bar and take your chances when you catch a “cold”. A few weeks on a ventilator will show you how incredibly wrong you are.

  • avatar

    I really want to like the new Bronco, but I’m not digging that grille and headlights. Also, it almost looks shorter than the first Bronco, and with those big tires, it looks a bit cartoonish. Thank goodness for ESC, because this thing is gonna be tippy like a Samurai.

    Hopefully Ford doesn’t blow this launch.

    ::cough:: Explorer ::cough::

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