Ford fans and off-road enthusiasts alike have been calling for a return of the Ford Bronco for years. Rather than waiting for what may never come, Los Angeles-based Icon has decided to bring the Bronco back themselves, packing a Coyote 5.0 from the Ford Mustang, no less.
Icon got started a few years back as TLC. Back then TLC started to custom build Toyota FJ40s, starting with the chassis and then adding modern goodies like a GM-sourced 5.3-liter V-8 producing 350-hp and 350 lb-ft of torque. After a name change to Icon, they added a modern interpretation of the Willys Jeep CJ3 to its lineup. The Icon CJ3 again features a GM-sourced engine. This time it's an Ecotec 2.4-liter I-4 producing 200-hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. Both the Icon FJ and CJ put their power to the ground through five-speed manual transmissions and part time four-wheel drive transfer cases.
While Icon plans on a SEMA debut next month for its take on the venerable Ford Bronco, it did preview to us what we can expect. Looking much like a first-gen Ford Bronco, Icon's version is essentially all-new under the skin. The biggest (and most pleasant) surprise is Icon's choice of Ford's new 'Coyote' 5.0-liter V-8. The 5.0, which also sees duty in the Ford F-150 and Mustang GT, produces a healthy 412-hp and 390 lb-ft of torque under the hood of the new Bronco. The Coyote is bolted to an Aisin Warner five-speed manual transmission and an Atlas II shift-on-the-fly part time four-wheel drive transfer case.
As for the other goodies, Icon chief Jonathan Ward told us that the Bronco would have Stoptech brakes (six-piston 15-inch front, four-piston 14-inch rear),and a coil-over suspension set up using Eibach coils and Fox Racing shocks. Color us impressed.
We're expecting each custom-built Bronco to cost around $90,000. Sure, it's not cheap. But with all the drool-worthy hardware included, it's sure to find homes with some well-heeled off-road enthusiasts.
We'll have more details and live pictures of the new Bronco at the SEMA show at the beginning of November.