Bronco is back climbing rocks |

Bronco is back climbing rocks

The new Bronco is an animal! The one I drove for seven days is the First Edition Sasquatch and most expensive. I liked the first one in the 60s and the second one that OJ Simpson liked, boxy and short wheel base made for off-road trails and pastures. The International Scout was its closest competition. Now it’s Jeep Wrangler at the top with Bronco closing in fast. Easy to tell that the folks at Ford spent a lot of time dissecting the Wrangler. All the improvements you wanted on the Wrangler is on the Bronco. Even the doors and roof pieces have a place in vinyl bags behind the second seat in the four door. And the mirrors are on the A-pillar, not the door. Push button front sway bar disconnect, locker front and rear axle and even a turning brake that will lockup which ever rear tire is on the inside so you can turn on a dime on switch backs. The four door I had only comes in 2.7L twin turbo Ecoboost V-6 (315 hp, 410 tq) and 10-speed auto like in the F150. The two-door is available with a seven-speed manual and a 2.3L turbo Ecoboost as in the Ranger.

Anthony and I went rock climbing at Mid-St. Vrain and Cooney Flats. Airing down the 35-inch mud terrain tires to 10 psi. Climbing the sides of rocks as big as the Bronco and crossing the river with 33.5 inches of water fording protection. It’s an amazing animal. Front camera is a life saver seeing what’s on the other side of the cliff. Lots of camera’s, with 360 so you can see what is on the sides and the front tires. That’s a big help seeing the rocks you’re close to. In the several camera screens, front camera also predicts your line over the rocks so you can see the line you can’t see over obstacles. The First Edition came with skid plates head to toe and a rock rub rail. GOAT (go over any type of terrain) modes, can be five to eight different modes depending on Base, Big Bend, Black Diamond, Outer Banks and Wildtrak models. I didn’t find a Sport mode on the First Edition Sasquatch. So I guess I won’t take it to Bandimere Speedway this weekend.

On the road, it drives and rides like a half truck with the same rack and pinion steering. Independent front axle and it’s five-link rear suspension works well off-road. Of course with an off-road truck this expensive ($63,000) it may have to be your daily driver to make payments. The two-door seven-speed is dramatically cheaper starting at $28,500. It’s rated at 20 mpg on the highway, which is good for 35-inch tires and 4.70 axle ratio. Tow rating on this one is 3,500 pounds but it didn’t come with a hitch and Ford said I couldn’t put one on. You know I don’t review trucks without using a trailer. So I guess it’s a warning. But I wanted it anyway. It’s the first media vehicle in many years that I drove all seven days of my loan. It was great fun, my son David drove it, climbed rocks and giggled the whole time. I hope he buys one so I can drive more. Next month I get a new Wrangler. Hope it has a hitch, this week I have the new Honda Ridgeline and it has a hitch.


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