Discussing the 2021 Ford Bronco and Bronco Sport leaks

We discuss the new look of the most anticipated SUVs of the year

Recently, we've seen a number of leaks for the widely anticipated 2021 Ford Bronco, as well as the "Baby Bronco," the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport. In this video, Senior Producer Christopher McGraw dials up Senior Editor, Green, John Snyder and Road Test Editor Zac Palmer to share the excitement. Here are some related articles with information discussed in the video above:

The video transcript follows.


- All right. So you guys talked about this quite a bit on the podcast, I just found out. I haven't listened to this week's podcast yet, but Ford Bronco leaks are quite the thing right now. And I'm pretty excited about the Ford Bronco and the baby Bronco, the Bronco Sport.

I am pretty excited about these leaked images. And I wanted to get your opinion. If we go to-- let's start off with the Ford Bronco Sport leaks that we saw. That's the blue vehicle. I just want to hear your overall opinion on-- on what you think about the styling and how-- how it fits into-- into the automotive world that we're living in right now.

- Yeah. So my first impression with the Bronco Sport was I thought it looked a lot like the original Escape, actually.

- OK.

- I dig that cool, blocky styling. And, you know, it's very different than the current day Escape, which is, you know, a lot more like a car. It's, you know, a lot of curves, no sharp edges anywhere. You know, it's a bit more like a Focus or, I mean, just a normal car as opposed to this Bronco Sport, which is-- I mean, I've heard a lot of comparisons with the Land Rover Defender.

- Yeah.

- It looks more upmarket. It looks like-- you know, it's probably gonna be more expensive than an Escape, would be my guess. But, I mean, overall, like, I do really like the design. What do you think about it, John?

- Well, when you mentioned the Escape to me the other day, that's when it clicked. I was like, I wasn't quite sure what to think of this. But yeah, when you mentioned that it looked like the Escape, I was like, yeah, the old Escape, the one, like, I'm always talking about how I miss it.

And I like the direction the new Escape has taken, but I definitely miss that original Escape. And this-- this has that same sort of look to it, that same sort of macho, burly, sort of blocky styling. I really like the sort of two-tone.

I like the blue that we're seeing. And then, you know, from the bottom of the windows up, you have the pillars and the roof are all black. I think that looks pretty cool.

I was not sure I was gonna be sold on this. And even after looking at the photos for a little bit, I'm not-- I'm still not sold on the badging on the back. And I'm still not sold on the "Sport" name. Just stop calling the smaller versions of things "Sport."

- Rogue Sport.

- Yeah.

- Yeah. Yep. That's exactly what I thought of just then.


- But I don't know. Yeah. And if you look at the back, look at where that Ford emblem is.

- The Ford emblem is atrocious. Like, it's so, so bad. It feels like first-gen Flex to me when they were like, oh, we need to put a Ford badge on here somewhere, and they just slapped one on, it feels like.

- Well, it kind of reminds me of, like, the placement of-- of the Land Rover badges. That's what it looks like to me.

- Yeah.

- Which is a little derivative. They don't need to be that derivative. But I think if you don't compare it to the Land Rover, I think on it's own, it's pretty good.

- OK.

- I will withhold judgment, final judgment until I, you know, see it in person and drive it, but these are really promising photos.

- Yeah. I definitely agree with both of you that it reminds me of the Escape. I actually-- my second and third cars were that old Escape.

- Yeah.

- So I have an affinity for that, like, mini Explorer, like--

- It didn't ruin the experience for you?

- What's that?

- It didn't ruin the experience for you?

- No. I was-- I was, like, 17 and had horrible car opinions. So--

- Yeah. Those were great.

- Yeah.

- I like those.

- And I think-- I think-- yeah. To me, it looks like if that first- or maybe second-gen Escape had a kid with the Ford Flex, and that kid just really loved off-roading. That's what this looks like to me. I think the two-tone part of it is definitely bringing in the Flex for me. But I like it a lot.

The thing that I don't like about it, the badging. I don't like that Ford emblem. Even if it was, like, blacked out, I think I'd like it better.

And then the white Bronco in the grill and on the back. I mean, if there was ever a time where I would spray paint something, that would be it. Yeah, definitely, like, matte black those badges. And I'm sure that's gonna be an option. But--

- You want them, like, matte black? I can see, like, a glossy-- because the--

- Gloss works too. Because then it would match the roof.

- In the front, it would just disappear if it was matte.

- Yeah.

- I don't know. They're really pushing that-- that Bronco brand, it sounds like. I mean--

- Yeah.

- [INAUDIBLE] secondary. That's why it's, like, lower and on the right side of the rear. I don't even see a Ford logo on the front of this thing.

- Right.

- [INAUDIBLE] hood, which [INAUDIBLE] be bizarre. But yeah, it actually-- you know, that throwing-it-off-to-the-side thing-- the teaser of the Hummer truck EV, they have "Hummer" way across the grill huge and then the tiny little GMC logo on the side.

- Yeah, that's right.

- And it's-- yeah, it really seems like, you know, both GM and now Ford is doing the same thing with the Bronco. They're pushing the actual model name as the-- as the selling point instead of the brand itself.

- Let's move on to the actual Bronco, not the Bronco Sport. We have a couple of leaks. The first leak was a white-- white Bronco with what looked like a cloth hood. I don't know if you guys have that link handy to take a look at that.

But what do you think about-- A, how excited are you to drive a Bronco without a roof on it? And B, what do you think that the cloth roof? Not hood-- I think I said "hood" earlier. Cloth roof, is what I meant.

- I think it's got to offer it, of course. You can definitely tell that the rear window looks like, you know, that plastic job. It looks super wrinkly.

- Yeah.

- You know, honestly, I don't know. I would just try and keep the top off as much as possible.


But I think it looks badass. That approach and departure angle looks pretty severe, looks like it could really crawl over some stuff. I like the illuminated-- it looks like the whole lining across the front with the lettering is all illuminated on the grill.

If so, that's pretty cool. I like that. A little-- a little flashy probably for some people's taste, but I can get down with it.

- Yeah. I mean, the-- the first leak that we got was yesterday. Yeah. Or two days ago. We-- oh, we got the four-door, but then we also got the two-door in that styling book. And I think that that is the one that I'm super excited about.

I think that this one, you know, brings back the full nostalgia experience of the 1960s Broncos. With the shape of it, you know, that, you know, shortish hood with, you know, a really, really abbreviated rear end-- and it looks like it might have some sort of removable hard top on it as-- as I'm looking at the line going all the way up into the roof. If so, that's another awesome thing. You know, hopefully it's a wet roof that you can throw back there.

But no, this looks like a really, really great alternative to the Wrangler, which, I mean, at this point, I'm really surprised that nobody has actually come up with any true competitor to the Wrangler. But hey, here we go. Two doors, maybe manual transmission. I know that we've seen rumors about that. I think they'd be awesome. I don't know what the take rate would be on it.

But not like-- the two-door and, you know, this sort of Rubicon-esque styling-- you see the big, knobby tires, big ride heights. I am super, super intrigued by the two-door. And at the same time, I think the four-door looks pretty great too. So I don't know. Do you have any big opinions, Chris?

- I mean, not anything too crazy. I like the two-door. I mean, if I was gonna buy a Wrangler, I would buy the two-door even though it's not as practical. And so same thing here.

The Bronco two-door is just-- oh, my gosh. It's-- I haven't been this excited about a vehicle in a while, I feel like. And I think some of that has to do with now I live in an area where I can go off-roading pretty easily compared to maybe you guys.

But the two-door is just-- I cannot. Like, I am picturing myself driving around Moab in that thing, and I cannot wait for that moment to happen. Though, at the same time, the four-door, you know, I'm-- as I'm entering my 30s, I'm, like, well, the four-door is pretty practical. And that's, all of a sudden, something I need to start thinking about.

So I would say 80% of me is, like, yes, on the two-door over the four-door. But I think-- oh, man. Yeah, it looks so good. And being able to just-- yeah-- have another vehicle that you could take the roof off of is super nice.

Driving around in the Gladiator with the roof off is incredible. And so I would be really excited to do it here. The final leaked photos, I think we posted about today.

- Yeah.

- Yeah. Just, like, an hour-- less than an hour ago. These ones are super clear. This black four-door with the hard top.

- Yeah.

- What do you guys think about that one?

- From the rear, it really does look like a Wrangler, doesn't it?

- It does. So much so.

- The tire on the back.

- So much so.

- I like the cloth top better, personally. I know it's probably noisier and whatnot, but like I said, I'd be the person who would have the top off as much as possible. I think if I were gonna get a Wrangler, I would just get soft top as well. But yeah. I mean, it looks good, though.

- This one makes me feel a lot better that the-- that the other one was real. I know-- I was somewhat skeptical, you know, because the photo was so blurry.

- Yeah.

- There were some spots here and there that looked fake, that I don't know. Maybe this is Photoshop. Maybe it's not Photoshop. Can't really tell.

But no, like, these photos, like-- these are-- look 100% genuine. You know, and the resolution is much higher so you actually get a better idea of the design itself. And, you know, I think that this is-- this isn't, like, the full-on off-road spec that we saw of the one yesterday, you know, with the giant tires on it.

This one has, you know, a much smaller tire. And, you know, maybe I compare it to, like, a, you know, a Scorch or a Sahara, you know, sort of Wrangler. With a hard top too, you know a little quieter, maybe more luxurious inside.

You know, I think that Ford really has an opportunity here to, you know, like out-feature and out-luxury the Wrangler. And this-- this might be one of those models. We-- but we can't see inside. We haven't seen inside yet.

That's-- that's the one big question. I don't know. Maybe there'll be a leak coming later today or tomorrow that has the interior. They seem-- just like you said, they're--

- They're getting closer.

- Yeah. Exactly. We just keep getting closer and closer. And it's like, I don't know. Maybe one of-- like, in a few hours, we'll see something show up. Oh, here's a manual transmission, right?

- Right. Right. Yeah.

- So yeah.

- Yeah, the leaks just keep on coming and coming. And hopefully they continue to, especially since the New York Auto Show has been postponed till, like, September. So we were hoping to see a lot of this in person in a couple of weeks. And that's not happening.

But we also had some of the-- so the vehicles that we've looked at so far, we've got the blue one, which is the most colorful of the bunch, and then, like, white and black. So I was-- I was very interested to see what the paint colors would be.

And there have been some leaks. Whether or not that we know that these are going to be the paint colors or not, we'll just speculate. But has a bunch of paint swatches. And then basically, they have, like, renderings with the colors.

And one thing that I was a little concerned with is that there would just be, as I've heard referred to before, the "German color scheme," which is just, like, blue, red, and then a bunch of gray tones. And, you know, with the Wrangler, you can rock teal and purple. And with a Bronco, I think you should be able to rock teal and purple if you want too.

So we got some colors, and some of them are quite bright, especially the-- there's, like, one that's, like, green screen green, which I'm totally digging. "Viper Green," I think, is what it's called. What do you guys think of all these colors that we're seeing?

- I think those last few that you're seeing there are ones that they are-- they're hopeful about.

- Right.

- But, you know, I want to see it-- that orange is kind of close. I want to see tan. I want to see, like, a camel-colored Bronco like my friend used to drive in high school.

- Yeah.

- I want a white one like OJ drove-- or AC drove.


You know, I want-- I want some of the-- the older colors. I want-- I want some throwback stuff. You know, the bright colors are cool too. I-- you know, I've never been a fan of the bright green Wranglers, and I wouldn't be of the bright green Bronco, really, either.

But, like, that light blue that we saw sort of on the baby Bronco is pretty cool. I would love, you know, an olive green, an army green sort of thing. And then yeah, just give me, like, brown, and white, and beige, and of course, black.

- Yeah.

- This would look awesome in black,

- Yeah. Yeah. I think that, you know, some of the names for the colors that, you know, were leaked or something, you know-- one's called Area 51. I think that's a pretty sweet name for a color. It looks like a grayish, greenish.

I mean, I'm sure it's gonna be, you know, a bunch of different shades when it shows up in light, in dark. And that's-- that's what I'm excited about. I saw Cyber Orange Pearl as well.

- Yeah. Yep.

- I am always excited about orange cars. And I'm happy that the Bronco's gonna be available in orange now too. Yeah, Fighter Jet Gray, Anti-Matter Blue Metallic. So yeah, like, all interesting names. But, you know, I totally agree with John. I think they need, like, a sand like all the Toyota TRD Pros in that super sandy color.

- You're making me so hungry right now.

- I know. I hear you. I just, like-- I keep saying, "sand," and John's getting hungry over here. But yeah. I hope that we get some interesting, funky colors from this car because I think that with an off-roader, you can-- you can kind of go crazy. You don't need to be a subdued as an Escape or, you know, an F-150 with it.

- Yeah. You want to be able to see your friend through the woods when he's, you know, rolling down the hill.

- Yeah. Exactly.

- Right. Right. Yeah. Honestly, if they took, like, the spectrum of colors that Toyota offered the FT Cruiser in, like, 5 to 10 years ago and just offered those, I would be so happy. I feel like that-- that entire color-- and all of the colors of the FJ Cruiser are, like, perfect for off-roading, and I-- I love them very much. So I'm excited to see all these colors, definitely. I'm hoping that the orange is a little more orange than what we got on the Ranger.

When we-- when I drove a Ranger in New Zealand, the orange that we got was, like-- it was orange. And then when we got it here, it was, like, kind of orange. So yeah.

I would like to see, like, a really orange Bronco. That would be the one that I would pick, at least. And I think it would be really awesome-- even though they will never do this-- if they named that color orange "OJ." But, you know--

- Would they need OJ's approval for that?

- I don't know. Orange juice, man. I think they'd be fine. All right. Well, thanks for talking about the new Bronco. Hopefully we get some leaks coming out soon. And--


- --we'll update everybody.

- I want-- I want to know the cost. I want to know the cost. I want to see the interior. I want to know the cost. And I want to-- like, the packaging.

- Yeah.

- I want to see how this is actually gonna fight against the Wrangler. If they can, you know, offer it, you know, for some dollars less than the Wrangler, maybe a stripped-out version-- I would love to see a very basic version with none of the bells and whistles except for the, you know, off-road stuff just for, like, the hardcore off-roader.

And if you can price that, you know, less than, you know, a Rubicon-- considerably less than a Rubicon-- I think that's gonna be pretty competitive. So I'm looking forward to seeing-- yeah-- the pricing, the packaging, and of course, the interior. And we'll learn those things eventually.

- Yeah.

- And then, like, safety, and, you know, crash-- we'll-- we'll figure that out further down the line. But--

- And then there's all the extras that you could buy to put on it. That's what--

- Right.

- I'm excited to see all that stuff.

- That's a big list, [? man. ?]

- Yeah.

- It's gonna be miles long.

- The special editions. There's gonna be probably some special editions.

- Yep. There has to be. Maybe the OJ Edition-- all-- all-white Bronco.

- We're all in on OJ.

- We are completely all in on the OJ Bronco.

- Yeah. Unfortunately, I'm pretty sure Ford is trying to forget that moment in their history. But it'll never-- it'll never happen. The '90s live on.


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