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THE ORIGINAL FORD BRONCO WAS ALMOST NAMED ‘WRANGLER’

The News May Startle Jeep Fans

Ford Bronco Rough Riders Baja 1000 SCORE Ultra4 Best In the Desert King Of Hammers
Image Via Ford.

The official Ford Bronco reveal has been put on ice until further notice, but we’ll hopefully have all of the details available once the COVID-19 pandemic blows over. Even as we’re awaiting details on the new Bronco, here’s a fresh bit of information on the original Bronco.

According to Fox News Autos, the original 1966 model was almost called something that would make Jeep lovers stunned with disbelief. One of the front-runners was “Wrangler.” Yes. “Ford Wrangler.” At that time, the Jeep Wrangler name didn’t exist yet, and its predecessor at the time was called the Jeep CJ-5. Even so, Ford stuck with the Bronco name, which was the original alias for the program that started in 1963. The original idea was to have another horse in the stable, next to the Mustang, that would act as a “four-wheel-drive sports car.” The final say in the naming process at the time was Ford’s product planner Don Frey.

Photo copyright: Muscle Cars & Trucks.

In the same report, it’s said that the original Ford Mustang came close to being called the “Cougar.” It was so close to fruition that Ford even mocked up a prototype with a logo featuring the big cat. The rest is history: Ford did end up choosing Mustang over Cougar. But the name and ethos resonated so well, that instead of scrapping it, they went on to make it a Mercury.

2021 Ford Bronco production is set to begin late this year, but with the unforeseen setback of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, it’s hard to know if that timeline will stay in place. Current leaks of the midsize body-on-frame SUV show that there will indeed be a two-door and a four-door Bronco. Both will be built at the Michigan Assembly plant, in Wayne, Michigan next to the Ford Ranger. A Bronco pickup truck is also rumored.

Ford Bronco

Written by Manoli Katakis

Muscle Cars & Trucks was founded by Manoli Katakis - an automotive media veteran that has been covering the latest car news since 2009. His journalism has uncovered dozens of major product changes, updates, plans, and cancellations long before automakers were ready to make things official.

Some highlights over the years of his reporting include the uncovering of the Zora trademark before anybody else reported on the coming of a mid-engine Corvette, as well as the dead-accurate reporting of the coming of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, two years before it hit the market, and even before the debut of the concept vehicle. This type of reporting has immediately continued here, with reports of the original seventh-generation Camaro plans being shelved, as well as what's in store for the Chevrolet Silverado.

Some of his work can be found on massive automotive media outlets, such as Motor1. He also has been a guest on the 910AM Radio Station with Detroit News auto critic Henry Payne, as well as the enthusiast-oriented Camaro Show podcast.

Over the years, Manoli has interviewed various automotive industry titans, leaders, and people that make things happen otherwise. These include figureheads such as GM CEO Mary Barra, GM President Mark Reuss, automotive aftermarket icon Ken Lingenfelter, Dodge firebrand Tim Kuniskis, along with various chief engineers of vehicles such as the Ford F-150 & Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro & Corvette, and many more.

At MC&T, Manoli is taking his journalism expertise, deeply planted sources, driving abilities, and automotive industry knowledge to new levels, covering more vehicles and brands than ever before. This is the place where you will continue to read groundbreaking stories about American performance vehicles, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles. Here is where you’ll also read insights and quotes from various automotive subject matter experts on the latest relevant products, as well as some of the latest official news from their manufacturers.

Fun facts: he also once beat Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner in an autocross with a Chevrolet Bolt EV. The biggest vehicle he’s ever driven is a John Deere mining truck. Besides a go-kart, the smallest vehicle he’s driven has been a Hyundai i10. He’s also spent time in the cockpit of various American performance vehicle icons, including the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Dodge Challenger Demon, and Ford Mustang GT350R. He has reviewed dozens of trucks, SUVs, and performance vehicles over the years.

One of his favorite new vehicles on the market today happens to be the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison. He is also a card carrying member of the Sports Car Club of America, and regularly participates in Detroit Region autocross events.

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