Here’s Proof That the 2021 Ford Bronco Has a Seven-Speed Manual and Crawler Gear
All hail the third pedal.
Late last month, a rumor that the 2021 Ford Bronco would have an optional seven-speed manual transmission circulated the internet. Given the manual's unpopularity with American car buyers and the volume of proverbial fudge found online, however, nobody could be blamed for not having any of it. That was until Wednesday when TFL Truck revealed a new set of photos allegedly of the 2021 Bronco and its manual shifter, which have allegedly landed the outlet in hot water with Ford.
The Colorado-based YouTube channel examined several photos said to be of the new SUV, which a camouflaged interior shot showing a BRONCO-embossed dashboard seems to confirm. At around 1:55 into the video, a close-up of the shift knob is shown, and it's definitely no automatic-controlling shifter. It's undeniably an H-pattern manual shifter, with six standard forward gears, but most importantly, dog-leg R and C gears, presumably for reverse and crawl respectively.
The video goes on to show an engine identified as the 2.3-liter Ecoboost, which currently produces 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque in the Ranger pickup truck. Its 10-speed automatic is also expected to carry over, as well as its two-speed transfer case, as evidenced by an interior photo showing its control knob. Further interior images seem to confirm the inclusion of the simplified, Jeep Wrangler-beating roof removal mechanism, auxiliary power switches for external accessories, and buttons to disconnect the sway bars for enhanced suspension articulation.
Sway bar disconnection is also evidenced by shots of the underbody, which depict Wrangler-contrasting independent front suspension with monotube shock absorbers, believed to be external-reservoir Bilstein units. Locking differentials on both front and rear axles are also expected, as interior images suggest their inclusion.
Publishing these photos allegedly attracted the Blue Oval's ire, as The Fast Lane Car states in a comment on the video that Ford retracted its invitation to the Bronco's July online reveal, as well as the F-150's later this month. It's unclear if the move on Ford's behalf is due to the outlet publishing Bronco details, but if anything, it gives these leaks even more validity.
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