The wait is finally over, and the cover has officially been pulled off of the Ford Bronco. Taking lessons from the model’s own history, Ford Motor Company has created a truly capable and serious off-roader to take on the mighty Jeep Wrangler. At the top of the new lineup sits the Ford Bronco Badlands series, and here is what you can expect from the focused 4×4 offering.
Let’s start with the upgraded off-roading hardware present on the Ford Bronco Badlands series. The new advanced 4×4 system optional on lower trims will be standard on the upper-level models. The upgraded system includes a two-speed electro-mechanical transfer case with an auto mode, as well as a Dana 44 AdvanTEK solid rear axle and a Dana AdvanTEK independent front differential. The system is uniquely tuned for the Badlands series, and features a segment-exclusive semi-active hydraulic stabilizer bar for improved stability at higher speeds. The package comes standard with 17-inch Carbonized Gray-painted machined-face aluminum wheels wrapped in 33-inch all-terrain tires.
For those hoping for a bit more capability from their off-roader, Badlands series buyers can spec the Sasquatch Package, which brings even more hardware to the table. Spicer Performa-TraK electronic locking differentials at either end for even more capability through rough terrain, as does the high-clearance suspension with position sensitive Bilstein shock absorbers. Other additions include a 4.7:1 final drive ratio, larger fender flares, 17-inch black-painted aluminum beadlock-capable wheels and 35-inch BSW Mud-Terrain tires
Ford has confirmed that the upper-level Broncos will receive upgraded armor for off-roading, including a heavy-duty modular front bumper, a powder-coated steel rear bumper, a front bash plate, as well as additional shielding for the engine, transmission, transfer case and fuel tank.
Under the hood the Ford Bronco Badlands series will be powered by the larger 2.7L EcoBoost V6 engine, which Ford say is expected to deliver a class-leading 310 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. The sole transmission available is the 10-speed automatic transmission, but the slush-box does bring with it Ford’s new Trail Control system. This software acts like a sort of cruise control for when you’re on the trial, so your focus can stay on the path ahead. The truck will also pack the new seven G.O.A.T modes via the Terrain Management System. The modes include Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand, with Baja, Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl tailored specifically for off-road driving.
On the exterior the Bronco Badlands series will be available in the following paint colors: Rapid Red Metallic Tinted Clearcoat, Velocity Blue, Shadow Black, Antimatter Blue, Iconic Silver, Area 51, Carbonized Gray,Cactus Gray, Race Red, Cyber Orange Metallic Tri-Coat, and Oxford White
Inside the Bronco Badlands series comes standard with marine-grade vinyl seating and a rubberized floor for easy post-adventure cleaning. You’ll also find an 8-inch SYNC 4 infotainment system, and auxiliary switches in the overhead console for all your added goodies. When it comes to interior trim and tech, Badlands buyers have the widest range of options out of any Bronco buyer. There are three optional interior packages over the standard kit, which include the following upgrades:
MID– Two-door Intelligent Access with lock and unlock functionality, 110V/150W AC power outlet, ambient footwell lighting, auto-dimming rear view mirror, dual-zone electronic automatic temperature control, heated front seats, illuminated visor mirrors, Remote Start System (automatic transmission only), Reverse Sensing System, subscription navigation with three month trial, SYNC 4 with enhanced voice recognition, Ford Co-Pilot360™ including Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, BLIS® with CrossTraffic Alert, Lane-Keeping System, Auto High-Beam Headlamps and rear view camera with backup assist grid lines
HIGH– Mid Package content, plus 12-inch center stack touchscreen, 360-degree camera, additional sound deadening, Forward Sensing System, side view mirror LED approach lamps
LUX– High Package content, plus Adaptive Cruise Control; 10-speaker B&O Sound System; Evasive Steering Assist; heated steering wheel; universal garage door opener; two additional front row USB smart-charging ports;Voice-Activated Touchscreen Navigation System and wireless charging pad
The 2021 Ford Bronco Badlands Series has all of the hardware that we could have hoped to see on a true Wrangler Rubicon competitor. We don’t have pricing information available at this time, other than we know that the two-door Bronco will carry a base price of $29,995, while the four-door starts at $34,695.