After months of delays, the new Ford Bronco is finally going to make its way to dealers. Around 100,000 customers who placed pre-orders have been waiting almost six months past the expected production date, and their new Bronco should arrive this summer.
One of the main delays in production is a summer-focused component: the Bronco’s removable roof. In late May, Ford sent letters to pre-order customers stating that the removable hardtop has been their “Achilles heel” on the project and that they have yet to be able to give an update on delivery timing. The carmaker committed to communicating when buyers’ vehicles entered milestones in the production process including ‘Scheduled for Production’, ‘Built’, and ‘Shipped’.
However, it appears that anyone who ordered the Sasquatch package and its offroad-focused 35-inch tires, Bilstein shocks, and seven-speed manual transmission will have to wait until next year for their vehicle.
Excellent for Blue Oval image
Ford’s consumer marketing manager, Mark Grueber, has been pushing for the Bronco’s return for years and its release is a source of satisfaction for him. Recognizing the hole in the market, he remarked, ”There really wasn’t anything in the showroom like [the Bronco]. There was a real need for it. Literally, customers were almost begging us to bring it back. There were starts and attempts to bring it back. It didn’t work until now with the Ranger in the plant here and some open capacity. Everything kind of came around full circle.”
But the launch has been anything but smooth. Not only have there been issues with the supply of hardtops, but the pandemic obviously played a role in the delay in production. The semiconductor shortage is influencing Ford’s capacity as a whole, but the carmaker is currently diverting supply to the Bronco to keep the line moving.
Even the official unveiling last year had to be postponed when it was discovered it was scheduled to coincide with O.J. Simpson’s birthday, July 9th. It was a white 1993 Ford Bronco that 25 million viewers worldwide watched the former football player attempt to escape in at high speeds on the interstate after allegedly committing a double murder. He was later acquitted. It would have been a major gaffe that was narrowly avoided.
Ford’s Bronco promotion has included admittance to Bronco proving grounds named the “Bronco Off-Roadeo”. There are four locations across the country that allow drivers to feel its capabilities and learn about its tech hands-on while they wait for their vehicle to be built and shipped. Ford CEO Jim Farley has said they expect the Bronco to capture a portion of the Jeep Wrangler’s customer base.
It’s estimated Ford has around two and a half years’ worth of orders to fill.
Did you enjoy this article from Jason Unrau? Please share your thoughts, comments, or questions regarding this topic by submitting a letter to the editor here, or connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date or catch-up on all of our podcasts on demand.
While you’re here, don’t forget to subscribe to our email newsletter for all the latest auto industry news from CBT News.