SPIED! Next-Generation Ford Bronco To Use Jeep Wrangler Platform
Believe it or not, it appears FCA honcho Sergio Marchionne’s courting of other companies as manufacturing partners is paying off. Our spies were able to snap this photo of the next-generation Bronco, riding on what appears to be a Wrangler JK platform.
The move, while odd at first, does start to make sense when you consider the upcoming increase in manufacturing capacity at Toledo (with Cherokee moving to Belvidere, Illinois), and the Wrangler has the only mid-sized solid-axle platform in the US. This shows Ford’s seriousness and commitment to having a trail-proven SUV right out of the box. Also, it allows Ford to bring the Bronco back with a removable rear hardtop on a proven chassis that is already FMVSS-certified.
Expect to see the 2.7L EcoBoost V-6 engine under the hood and a dialed-up version of that engine in a high-performance variant. This mule appears to be exactly that, a Ford Performance model, with its reservoir shocks and 35 or 37-inch BFGoodrich tires. Our understanding is that Ford will distance itself from the Wrangler in the marketplace by making the Bronco more of a go-fast vehicle in line with the Raptor and less of a rock crawler like the Jeep. However, that doesn’t mean it still won’t be capable with a front limited slip, rear locker, and high-tech transfer case as in the next-generation Raptor.
We expect to see fully uncovered photos around the first part of April next year.