The Ford Bronco has given the Jeep Wrangler a worthy competitor, so it should come as no surprise that the two automakers are willing to exchange some fightin' words over their products. Jeep boss Jim Morrison recently dinged Ford for its new Explorer Timberline trim, though Ford dished it right back in a new interview with the Detroit Free Press. "Stay classy, Auburn Hills," is what Ford spokesperson Jiyan Cadiz had to say about the matter.
Cadiz guessed that it'd "been a long year for Jeep" as Ford rolled out the Bronco Sport and the Bronco, though Morrison had also poked fun at Ford's production nightmares with the big SUV. The Bronco's roof problems are no secret, and, last month ahead of 4Fest, Morrison joked at that, "It's going to rain on Saturday, so I don't think there will be any Broncos here this weekend."
Gallery: 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe: First Drive
Morrison's recent comments dissed the Explorer Timberline trim. He said he felt "sorry" for Timberline trim customers, going so far as to say that customers are getting "tricked." The Trail Rated badge isn't "just a marketing term" for Jeep, cautioning against just putting stickers and paint on things. The Timberline trim did add upgraded off-road-tuned shocks, a raised ride height, intelligent four-wheel drive, and other visual upgrades, like red tow hooks.
It's unlikely the kerfuffle between Ford and Jeep will die down anytime soon. Ford is readying the high-performance Bronco Raptor, with the model's mid-cycle refresh rumored to arrive in 2025. Jeep is electrifying its lineup, introducing the 4xe plug-in hybrid with bolder plans to offer fully electric versions of every model by 2025, including the Wrangler. The automakers should have plenty to bicker about over the next few years as Ford and other Jeep competitors push in the off-road SUV space, though we know the real battle between the two will be on the showroom floor.