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Ford Motor Co Officially Starts Production of the Rugged New Bronco SUV

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【Summary】Ford Motor Co has officially kicked off production of the much anticipated 2021 Ford Bronco, after bringing the nameplate back last summer as a modern and rugged SUV after a 25 year hiatus. Shipments of the two-door and first ever four-door Bronco models to dealers across America begins today.

Eric Walz    Jun 15, 2021 10:30 AM PT
Ford Motor Co Officially Starts Production of the Rugged New Bronco SUV
The new Ford Bronco.

Ford Motor Co has officially kicked off production of the much anticipated 2021 Ford Bronco, after bringing the nameplate back last summer as a modern and rugged SUV after a 25 year hiatus. The original Ford Bronco SUV enjoyed a three decade long run before the automaker decided to retire it in 1996 and focus more on mainstream SUVs and pickups. 

Shipments of the two-door and first ever four-door models to dealers across America begins today. 

Several different models are available and are designed around different types of off-road activities. The base model Bronco starts at $29,995. The first of the Broncos will be delivered to the first reservation holders that have been waiting since last summer.

The Bronco is being built at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant. Ford invested $750 million and added approximately 2,700 direct jobs at the Michigan Assembly Plant to build the sixth-generation Bronco. The newly added jobs bring the total employment at the plant to roughly 4,900 people.

"We have the most skilled workforce in America working in a plant that's state-of-the-art," said John Savona, vice president, manufacturing and labor affairs at Ford. "It's an unbeatable combination designed to deliver our customers a high-quality, ready-for-anything, all-new Bronco."

Ford is hoping to resurrect part of its storied history with the new Bronco lineup while at the same time looking towards the future by building the new Bronco with modern technology, as it did with the Mustang-inspired Mach-E electric SUV.

Ford sold more than 1.1 million Broncos during the vehicle's original 31-year production run.

Ford's Bronco is highly customizable, which is part of its appeal from outdoor adventure types. Ford said that more than 125,000 Broncos orders have already been placed, with a total of more than 190,000 reservations in the U.S. and Canada to date.

A 1.7 million square foot Modification Center, adjacent to Michigan Assembly Plant, will offer Bronco two- and four-door model customizations. The facility will install options such as safari bar, roof racks, exterior graphic packages and additional accessories. Bronco owners can also choose from an extensive lineup of more than 200 factory accessories that will be added at dealerships.

The Modification Center was formerly Ford's Wayne Assembly Plant.

"We know the fans have been waiting for the Bronco – and we're so excited to bring it back," said Suzy Deering, Ford chief marketing officer. "And this Bronco is better than ever. We're staying authentic to Bronco's goes-over-any-terrain heritage and have leveraged the brand's Built Wild innovative design, durability and advanced off-road capability to get the most out of every adventure in the wild."

MAP_Bronco_99.jpg

Ford invested $750M and added approximately 2,700 jobs at its Michigan Assembly Plant to build the new Bronco.

The new Bronco is competing with vehicles from Jeep, such as the Wrangler. Ford is heavily touting the Bronco's off-road capabilities. Ford said the Bronco has the confidence to go "over any-type of terrain" (G.O.A.T), which is part of the vehicle's appeal as an adventure vehicle. 

Standard drive modes include Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand. Additional settings for Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl modes are available on Badlands and First Edition models.

The Badlands and First Edition Bronco models come with a standard 4x4 system with a twin-clutch rear-drive unit with a differential lock feature to allow greater off-road performance that's similar to a traditional mechanical locking differential, Ford said. The system can automatically send torque to any wheel when needed. The result is some serious off-road capability that's not found in many production vehicles today.

"We created the Bronco family to elevate every aspect of off-road adventure and equipped them with class-leading chassis hardware and exclusive technologies to raise the bar in the rugged 4x4 segment and take people further into the wild," said Ford CEO Jim Farley last summer when the Bronco was first revealed.

Ford recently revived another nameplate from the 1970's, the Maverick, which was a compact sedan originally produced from 1969 to 1977.

The new Maverick however has returned in the form of a pickup truck with a focus on fuel efficiency, practicality and everyday utility. The Maverick will come standard with a hybrid powertrain as Ford begins to electrify its model lineup. 

At first glance, the Maverick resembles a smaller version of the Ford F-150, which is the best selling truck in the U.S. With its compact size, Ford is trying to lure in buyers with a more fuel efficient and practical pickup truck that's better suited for everyday driving, weekend projects and adventures.

Ford said the all-new 2022 Ford Maverick is the "truck for people who never knew they wanted a truck."

With the Maverick's sub $20,000 starting price, Ford is aiming to lure in younger buyers that might find the new Bronco Sport or Ford's other trucks a bit too expensive for their budgets.

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