It's podcast time! This week, Ford archivist Ted Ryan is our guest for a deep dive into Bronco history. It was a fantastic conversation. We hope you enjoy listening to it as much as we enjoyed nerding out about the SUV with Ryan.
Naturally, our conversation starts at the very beginning of the Bronco's history. Ryan shared with us some pre-production sketches of the SUV with a different design than what eventually arrived. We also got to take a look at planning documents for the model where Ford outlined its desire to have a model to compete against the Jeep CJ-5 and International Scout.
We also got into the vast array of accessories that Ford offered for the Bronco. The availability of a snowplow was especially important and caused quite a few memos between the execs and engineers.
The Bronco spawned some odd variants, too. An Arizona utility company modified one to sniff for natural gas leaks. There was also a proposal to make a military version, but the US Army didn't adopt it. Ford even built modified Broncos as a Popemobile for Pope John Paul II's 1979 visit to America.
We also touch on the 2004 Bronco concept that was critically lauded but never entered into production. Ryan told us about the Bronco diehards within Ford who were pushing to bring the model back.
Over its entire production run, Ford only made 1,148,926 units of the Bronco. Despite that modest number, the vehicle became iconic. On the cusp of its return to the market, it was great to talk with Ryan about the model's history.
Where To Listen
Look for new episodes of Rambling About Cars every Friday. You can find the video version on YouTube and audio in a variety of places like Apple Podcasts and Spotify. If you have a moment, please like, follow, and review because it exposes the show to more people. And the more people joining us on this automotive odyssey, the better. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.