New Ford Bronco Reportedly Being Developed in Australia
No word on how much Vegemite will come packed into every glove compartment.
The much-hyped return of the Ford Bronco will apparently have some Australia in the sauce, new reports are claiming.
Since the truck is based on the Australia-developed Ranger pickup's T6 platform, Ford is engineering the next Bronco at that chassis's home at the automaker's Asia-Pacific Product Development Center in Victoria, Motoring reports. That same facility is where the Escort, Figo, and a Chinese-market version of the Taurus were developed.
The current Ranger is available with either a four or a five-cylinder diesel engine, so it seems likely those options could be seen in the new Bronco. Motoring also believes the Broncos destined for America will be sold with a gas V6 option—which seems likely, considering the U.S.'s preference for gasoline-powered vehicles.
Given the former Bronco's rough and tough off-road persona, it is expected that the new truck comes with a transfer case with low-range gearing, and the option of a manual or automatic transmission, Road & Track reports.
Though the Bronco is being designed in Australia, it's not known if a right-hand-drive model will be offered once the truck arrives on the market.
Currently, the Ranger is in production in Brazil, Thailand, and South Africa. Come 2018, however, the Ranger and Bronco will begin to be churned out at a factory here in North America. Though we haven't heard anything official from Ford, in October, UAW local 900 Chairman Bill Johnson confirmed to The Detroit Free Press that a new Bronco and a new Ranger were on the way and that they would be built in Michigan.
The new Bronco will likely be available for purchase for the 2020 model year. That timing means it should arrive several years after its primary competition: the next-generation Jeep Wrangler, which is expected to show up in 2017.
Pictured: 2004 Ford Bronco Concept