Ford is taking the Bronco vs Wrangler battle very seriously; their latest marketing action was taking five Broncos to one of the most famous Jeep events – the eastern Jeep safari.
All five of the vehicles Ford brought look appealing, and judging by the available details, they have done every single thing possible to ensure these trucks will be aimed towards the kind of people that love Wranglers.
The doors come off, a soft top is available and the accessories catalog is immense.
However, there is a fundamental difference that stops this vehicle from being a true Wrangler rival. Before we go there though, let’s have a look at the new Broncos Ford brought to Moab.
Outer Banks Bronco
The customizability of the Bronco is obvious with this one, as all four doors are removed and Ford states that the fenders and bumpers can also be taken off easily. This will provide each customer with the ability to personalize their vehicle.
Further accessories include a drawer system which will make organizing your gear much easier on those long trips.
Four-Door RTR Concept
RTR engineers have been modifying Ford vehicles for many years; so, an RTR Bronco was inevitable. This one has some beefy tires, unique graphics, RTR wheels, bumpers, grill, and interior accessories.
The aim of this rig is to showcase what will be available from RTR when it comes to Bronco modifications.
ARB has off-road accessories for nearly every off-road vehicle in the world and the Bronco is no exception.
On this one, we can see the drawer system ARB has to offer, a trunk-mounted fridge, a bull bar with rated recovery points, differential covers, and an air compressor.
This rig is aimed towards the overlanders out there by offering all the go-to accessories any remote explorers tend to need for their vehicles.
4 Wheel Parts Bronco
4 Wheel Parts is a retailer selling parts for a variety of different 4x4s. This version was customized with method wheels, 37-inch tires, a very aggressive front bumper, warn winch, lights, rock sliders, roof top tent, a storage system, and a fridge.
From this one we can get an idea of what a more extreme Bronco aimed towards people who enjoy rock crawling and more difficult trails could look like.
The sport is the smaller and softer brother of the Bronco and it is the only one available for purchase right now.
This build looks interesting and can be aimed more towards a family that enjoys camping and being outdoors on mild trails.
The sport is showcased with a rooftop tent, a steel rotating arm to mount a spare tire, awning, more aggressive tires, and lights.
Now that we covered the five Broncos Ford decided to showcase let’s dive into the fundamental difference between a Wrangler and the new Bronco.
I believe that the independent front suspension setup of the Bronco is what stops it from being a true Wrangler rival.
The Bronco will not be able to keep up with a similarly modified Wrangler when the terrain gets really tough. Therefore, people who are into extreme off-roading and rock crawling will still go for the Wrangler. Furthermore, those insane Jeep builds we all know and love are not possible with an Independent front suspension vehicle.
I do not believe this is a problem though, the percentage of the marketplace that needs a solid axle vehicle is very small; so, I can see why Ford went with an independent suspension setup.
I would describe the Bronco as an overlanding version of the Wrangler – or perhaps, what the new 4Runner could have been if Toyota finally decided to update it.
The Bronco will have the aftermarket support and customizability a Wrangler has while being a bit more comfortable due to the suspension setup. Therefore, I am expecting the overlanding scene to get filled with these.
Another big part of the marketplace is the people who drive Wranglers as a lifestyle icon – you know, those who use them only to get to work and back.