As the 2021 Ford Bronco finally approaches its official sales debut, we’re starting to get more finalized information about the SUV lineup. Earlier this week, we learned that Ford initially underrated the horsepower output of the SUVs, which we now know crank out class-leading figures for both four-cylinder and six-cylinder offerings. This is exciting stuff for fans and buyers alike, but a new piece of info that has come to light is less enticing. The team over at Bronco Nation have just gotten their hands on the Ford Bronco fuel economy ratings for both the 2.3L and 2.7L EcoBoost engines, and things may surprise potential customers. Here’s what you need to know.
Ford Bronco: Thirsty For Fun
The 2021 ford Bronco is unapologetically an off-road vehicle. As such, the SUV packs a ton of hardware that specifically aims to improve its capability off-road. Items like an advanced 4×4 system, beefy tires, and a low-range transfer case allow the Ford to do impressive things on the trails. That said, all of these things are heavy, and play a part in making the Bronco lineup quite hefty. Unfortunately for customers, it appears that this may have a serious impact on the fuel economy ratings of the Ford Bronco lineup. Option a Base, Big Bend or Outer Banks model with the 2.3L engine and either gearbox, and the SUV returns ratings of 20 MPG City, 22 MPG Highway, and 21 MPG Combined. The least efficient Broncos, any 2.7L-powered model with the Sasquatch Package, return just 17 MPG combined. The full lineup breaks down as follows:
Ford Bronco Fuel Economy Ratings:
2.3L/Auto Base, Big Bend, Outer Banks – 20 City 22 Highway 21 Combined
2.3L/Auto Black Diamond (non-Sasquatch) – 18 City 18 Highway 18 Combined
2.3L/Auto Sasquatch Package Equipped – 18 City 18 Highway 18 Combined
2.3L/Auto Badlands – 18 City 17 Highway 17 Combined
2.3L/Manual Base, Big Bend, Outer Banks – 20 City 22 Highway 21 Combined
2.3L/Manual Black Diamond – 17 City 19 Highway 18 Combined
2.3L/Manual Badlands – 16 City 18 Highway 17 Combined
2.7L/Auto Base, Big Bend, Outer Banks, Black Diamond – 18 City 20 Highway 19 Combined
2.7L/Auto Sasquatch-Equipped Models – 17 City 17 Highway 17 Combined
2.7L/Auto Badlands – 17 City 18 Highway 17 Combined
Ford has confirmed that these Bronco fuel economy ratings are accurate with the team at Motor1. That might be rather upsetting for buyers, as these numbers fall short of what the comparable Jeep Wrangler models are able to muster. Off-road vehicles are often driven long distances in between trails or on trips, and the 2021 Ford Bronco hasn’t done itself any favors in this department. Furthermore, it doesn’t help that Ford has long touted the efficiency of their EcoBoost platforms, only to have them turn out frankly sub-par fuel economy ratings for the segment. We have to imagine that a lazy V8 could have managed better returns than the high-strung turbo motors at this point.
For comparison, we screen-grabbed the FuelEconomy.gov ratings of the 2021 Jeep Wrangler, which delivers slightly better fuel economy numbers in some respects, but the Bronco has it beat on power. Customers are bound to notice that more.
So then the 2021 Ford Bronco is a fairly thirsty SUV. That may be a problem for some potential buyers, but likely not a deal breaker for most interested parties. An off-roader like this is made to bring a bit of fun into your life, something the Bronco promises to do quite well. If that means having to stop for gas more often, then so be it. That said, here’s to hoping that the gas shortages and price spikes we’re seeing right now calm down a bit before the SUV hits dealer lots.