Here is an ultimate Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler comparison you were looking for!
For decades, Jeep Wrangler was the undisputed king of the off-road class.
While the whole industry moved towards soft suburban SUV with the off-road capabilities of a shopping cart, Wrangler stayed true to the concept and became the segment’s symbol.
It wasn’t just the (only) go-anywhere domestic model you can buy, either. Instead, it was a real lifestyle vehicle with global presence and popularity.
However, Jeep fans should be worried since there is a new kid in town…
Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler: Here Comes the 2021 Bronco
Exactly 54 years since the original release and 24 years since it was being discontinued, Ford decided to revive the legendary Bronco. Ford faithful waited long for this, and initial fears that the 2021 Bronco might be just another soul-less SUV with retro-futuristic design disappeared as soon as the first specs were revealed.
It looks like the Wrangler finally met its match and that the fiercest Detroit’s automotive battle of 2021 will be fought in the mud and dirt of the off-road course. It’s the Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler showdown we’ve been waiting for!
It is a little-known fact that when Ford started development work on the original Bronco, back in 1963, one of the names that the marketing department came up with was “Wrangler.” Funny enough, Ford designed Bronco to be a competitor to the Jeep CJ-5, the Wrangler’s predecessor. This little piece of trivia just shows that Bronco and Wrangler are two sides of the same coin and that their rivalry goes a long way.
That is why the big question hovering in the car community is how those two desirable off-road heroes stack against each other. We are about a year away from the first official road tests, but we can already paint a clear picture by comparing their specs. Let’s begin the Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler showdown!
Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler: Three vs Three
Right from the start, the 2021 Bronco will be offered in three distinct body styles – two and four-door Bronco and more civilian, Bronco Sport, five-door model. The 2021 Bronco has its own, newly-engineered platform, while the Bronco Sport will use the same chassis as the Ford Ranger.
Jeep is offering the 2021 Wrangler in three variants, as well. The classic, two-door model, versatile and popular Wrangler Unlimited four-door and recent and very interesting addition to the Jeep family – Jeep Gladiator. The Gladiator is a versatile and capable pickup version, and so far, Ford doesn’t plan to introduce anything similar for the Bronco lineup.
Engines: Two vs Four (at the Moment)
Moving forward into this Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler debate with engines comparison. We know that many Ford fans were disappointed when it was announced that 2021 Bronco would not get a V8 option.
For decades, the rumble of the V8 was one of Bronco’s signature features, but sadly, in the 21st-century, fuel efficiency and environmental concerns are more important. But, don’t be afraid that 2021 Broncos will be underpowered.
With 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 270 hp, as standard and 2.7-liter turbocharged V6 with 310 hp, as optional engine, the 2021 Bronco will have more than decent performance.
We already know that Bronco will be getting a Raptor version with 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 as well as a hybrid option shortly.
In the Jeep camp, the engine offerings are much better. At the moment, buyers can get Wrangler with the 3.6-liter V6 (285 hp) with or without mild-hybrid eTorque technology. The modern, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder is the smallest engine on offer, but with 270 hp on tap, it delivers a solid performance. Interestingly, Jeep decided to offer a durable 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine with “just” 260 hp but a massive 442 lb-ft of torque.
However, the same as with Bronco, there are two highly anticipated engine options coming soon. One is plug-in-hybrid, which will appeal to an environmentally cautious crowd, and the other is mighty Wrangler 392. With 450 hp coming from with 6.4-liter Hemi V8, Wrangler 392 is an off-road muscle car capable of reaching 60 mph in less than 5 seconds.
Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler: Two Transmissions vs One
The Jeep might offer more engine choice, but Ford is offering more transmission options. Interestingly, the 2021 Bronco will come as a 7-speed manual as standard or 10-speed automatic as optional.
The only transmission option on Wrangler is an 8-speed auto box. The Bronco’s manual option might be attractive to some buyers since it combines a regular 6-speed gearbox with one super-low gear ideal for rock-crawling or towing on slippery surfaces.
Hardware: The Bronco and Wrangler Come Well-Equipped
True off-road aficionados know that engine power or a number of gears don’t mean a lot if the chassis is not up to the task.
That is why most of the development at Ford and Jeep went into making the chassis as strong as capable as possible. Although the Wrangler and Bronco are going for the same customers, their underpinnings are not the same, and there is a significant difference in construction.
The Bronco features unibody construction with front control arms and a live axle in the rear. If you order a higher trim level or already popular Sasquatch package, you will front stabilizer bar, which could be disconnected from the cabin. Bronco is also offering the highest ground clearance in the class and class-leading approach and departure angles.
On the other hand, Wrangler’s chassis looks sturdier since Jeep sticks to body-on-frame technology, making a rigid structure. The front and rear suspension features live axle, and you can also detach the front stabilizer bar if you opt for the Rubicon package.
Whichever of these venerable SUVs you opt for, you’ll get a fantastic ride that’s ultra-capable on and off-road. The biggest problem will be choosing which one to get!
We hope this Ford Bronco vs Jeep Wrangler debate helped you make your buying decision.