The original Bronco was so small!
The new Ford Bronco is coming. The reborn off-roader was expected to debut earlier in April, but Coronavirus led Ford to push the big ceremony back a couple of months. The automaker has confirmed it will unveil the new Bronco in the spring, leaving us with May or possibly early June until we finally get full information and an official first look.
In the meantime, a new video from YouTuber Mr. chart takes us through the Bronco’s evolution across the decades. The first-generation model arrived in 1965 for the 1966 model year, with Ford aiming it at small off-road competitors like the Jeep CJ-5 and International Harvester Scout. The compact Bronco was available in various configurations and trim levels that included a roofless/doorless roadster version as well as an enclosed wagon and pickup truck models.
Things obviously changed in 1978 with the introduction of the second-generation Bronco. No longer a small CJ alternative, the off-roader went full-size with a body and frame based on the Ford F-Series. It held onto some of its past, however, with a removable fiberglass hardtop for the rear seat area. Despite the F-Series bones, the second-generation Bronco retained a coil-sprung solid axle in the front versus the twin I-beam layout used on pickup trucks.
Gallery: Ford Bronco Evolution
From there on out, Bronco evolutions were essentially facelifts and technology updates that corresponded with various F-Series generations. The third-generation Bronco appeared for the 1980 model year, nixing the solid axle in front for Ford’s twin I-beam design. The fourth-generation redesign featuring flush headlights arrived in 1987, with the final fifth-generation version debuting for the 1992 model year. The last production Bronco came off the line in 1996.
That brings us to 2020, and the video ends with a look at the Bronco R Baja racer that Ford debuted last year as a preview of what’s to come. Obviously, the sixth-generation is returning to its first-gen roots as a smaller Jeep fighter, complete with a removable top and doors. As numerous patent applications and leaked reports have shown, it will be offered as either a two-door or longer four-door model, matching directly with the Jeep Wrangler.