After what’s seemed like endless teasers, Ford has finally revealed the 2021 Ford Bronco! Though the Bronco name was a staple in off-roading and pop culture alike, Ford ceased production in 1996 after thirty years of evolution. And now, it’s back!
Early Broncos carried the nickname “G.O.A.T.” – referring to “Goes Over Any Terrain,” not “Greatest of All Time.” Is the 2021 Ford Bronco the G.O.A.T. in both cases? Let’s take a look. Click or tap on images to see them full-screen.
2021 Ford Bronco Essentials
If you can’t read any further, here’s what’s what. Ford is offering the 2021 Bronco in both two-door and four-door varieties, all of which have standard four-wheel drive. The two-door base Bronco will start at $29,995 and the four-door at $34,695. There’s also a smaller member of the Bronco family, the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport, which is based on the Ford Escape crossover.
The 2021 Bronco is offered with two engines, two transmissions, two 4×4 systems, several roof options, removable, frameless doors, eleven paint colors, and six trim levels.
2021 Ford Bronco Drivetrains
You’ve seen both of the 2021 Ford Bronco’s engine offerings in other Fords. The 2.3 liter EcoBoost four cylinder is standard, producing 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Ford’s 2.7 liter EcoBoost V6 is optional, and Ford projects it’ll make 310 horsepower and 400 lb-ft.
The 2.3 liter comes standard with a 7-speed Getrag manual transmission, which has six normal ratios and a seventh “crawler” gear that is lower than your usual first gear, at 6.588:1. Both 2.3 and 2.7 liter engines can be optioned with Ford’s corporate 10-speed automatic. If you want the manual, you’ll have to pair it with the 2.3.
2021 Ford Bronco Off-Roading
Off-roading is obviously Ford’s primary focus with the 2021 Bronco’s capabilities. Every 2021 Bronco comes standard with four-wheel drive, though two systems are offered alongside multiple axle ratios.
Bronco’s standard 4×4 system will feature part-time selectable engagement – so the driver will have dedicated modes for 2 High, 4 High, and 4 Low. This system features a 2.72:2 low ratio and a crawl ratio of 57.19:1 (automatic transmission) or 79.92:1 (manual transmission).
The optional 4×4 system on the 2021 Bronco features automatic “on demand” 4 High engagement, much like Ford’s higher-trim pickup trucks. So, you’ll see a “4A” option on the transfer case selector knob alongside 2H, 4H and 4L settings. This system has a 3.06:1 low ratio and crawl ratios of 67.8:1 (automatic) or 94.75:1 (manual).
Axles are Dana 44, front and rear. The 2021 Bronco features a solid rear axle and independent front suspension. Spicer “Performa-TraK” locking differentials are available for front and rear axles alike.
The Bronco features roughly the same “capability” statistics no matter if you choose the shorter two-door or longer four-door. Capability changes depending on tire you choose – the more basic Broncos will have a smaller tire that reduces capability, though it’s worth noting the Bronco can be equipped from Ford with a standard 35″ tire and beadlock-capable wheels. Every Bronco can ford 33.5″ of water.
|Capability||“Base” Bronco||Bronco with 35″ Tires|
|Breakover angle||21.1° (2 door) / 20° (4 door)||29° (2 door) / 26.3° (4 door)|
2021 Ford Bronco Towing
Every 2021 Bronco is rated to tow 3,500 pounds. With such short wheelbases – 100.4″ on two-door and 116.1″ on four-door – towing much more wouldn’t be very fun or safe. If you want to tow more, Ford will gladly sell you an Explorer or Expedition.
2021 Ford Bronco Colors and Design
We’ll start with paint colors – there are eleven of them to choose from. Beyond the expected black, silver, and white, Ford is offering some actual color, which is commendable. Buyers can choose from two blues, two reds, two “grays” that have greenish tinges, and a neon-popsicle tone of Cyber Orange Metallic Tri-Coat.
All Broncos come with various removable roof systems. Two-door Broncos come with a standard three-section hardtop; four-doors come with a cloth soft top, hardtop optional. The hardtop features rear side windows that can be removed without the roof panels, and Ford claims every roof panel of their hardtop can be removed by one person. Both of those notes are direct digs at Jeep, whose Wrangler hardtop is functional but difficult to remove solo.
Four-door Broncos have storage space on-board for all four doors if removed. Every Bronco has side mirrors mounted on the cowl, not the doors, which means it’s legal to remove the doors in every state (many have side mirror laws that require aftermarket solutions on a Wrangler).
Given many Bronco owners will use their trucks in every sort of weather scenario, Ford offers some trim levels with rubberized floors with integrated drains, and marine-grade vinyl seat surfaces that resist mildew. The dashboard and switchgear is protected from rain and dirt.
2021 Ford Bronco Sport
Ford has also introduced the 2021 Bronco Sport. Unlike the “big sibling” Bronco model, the Bronco Sport is a unibody crossover based heavily on the Ford Escape. With additional off-road focused drive modes, the Bronco Sport will be able to escape from pavement farther than the Escape (groan, I had to), but with more of an on-road focus compared to the full-sized Bronco.
Nevertheless, the 2021 Bronco Sport in Badlands trim will offer 8.8″ of ground clearance, 30.4° approach / 20.4° breakover / 33.1° departure angles, 23.6″ of water-fording capability, and a 29″ all-terrain tire. This will not be your mom’s Escape.
Make Your Reservation Now
This is all quite a lot to take in, that’s for sure. We’re so glad to finally have the Bronco here as an honest competitor to Jeep’s Wrangler. Drivers of all kinds will undoubtedly be excited to configure their 2021 Bronco and slip behind the wheel, whether they keep the tires on asphalt or head immediately to a trail.
For those looking to get in line to purchase a 2021 Ford Bronco, virtual reservations are being accepted at Ford.com. $100 will get you a spot in line to configure your Bronco, and it’ll be delivered to the Ford dealership of your choice.
Full pricing and options will be available closer to launch, and we’ll have full driving impressions of the 2021 Bronco as soon as possible.