Ford celebrates the original 1966 Bronco with the new Bronco and Bronco Sport Heritage Edition


When Ford reintroduced the Bronco last year, Torque News noted that the revival of the honored name was a welcome development. We at Torque News next got into the story of the original Bronco, which was introduced 56 years earlier.

We noted not only the origins of the Bronco but also that it was one of the first SUVs on the market. We also noted that its birth launched a whole culture of 4X4 ​​SUVs in the world of surfing. But it was not half.

True all-terrain powerhouse

The original Bronco, a two-door-only SUV, was also a true off-road powerhouse. The Bronco was the first year winner of the Baja 1000 – 1969. In later competitions in the 1970s and 1980s, the Bronco was both class winner and overall winner on several occasions. Two years ago, the factory set out to repeat the Bronco’s victory in the Baja. However, the entrance was plagued with problems from the start. The first effort was a “DNF” (did not finish) due to parts and environmental issues.

Last year, the factory entrance did much better. There are also plans to re-enter the Baja. Ford also ordered unique models of the Bronco to participate; they are customer vehicles.

Meanwhile, the Bronco brand is taking trail riders back to their off-road roots with the introduction of the 2023 Bronco and Bronco Sport Heritage and Heritage Limited editions.

Special-edition models will be available across the entire Bronco family lineup, including the two-door Bronco, four-door Bronco and Bronco Sport SUVs. Ford will build just 1,966 units of each Heritage Limited Edition model to commemorate the year the original Bronco launched.

“Bronco captivated America in the mid-’60s with its rugged styling and uncompromising off-road agility, a legacy still prevalent today,” said Mark Grueber, Bronco’s chief marketing officer. “With these new Heritage and Heritage Limited Editions, we’re paying homage to Bronco’s roots with nods to some of the first generation vehicle’s iconic design cues while continuing to build the Bronco brand with more Special Editions than our customers want.”

The 2023 Bronco Sport Heritage and Heritage Limited Edition models are available to order for all customers now. Two- and four-door Bronco models go on sale later this year, with initial orders taking priority for current Bronco order holders waiting for their vehicle. Orders will be open to all customers next year, regardless of current booking status.

1960s Bronco style meets modern capability

Two- and four-door Bronco Heritage models are highlighted by two-tone paint that includes signature Oxford White accents, including the modular hardtop. A unique Oxford White grille features Race Red ‘FORD’ lettering, while 17-inch Oxford White painted heritage aluminum wheels and side stripe complete the retro look.

1960s-inspired square fenders with Sasquatch-width fender flares provide visual cue and cover nearly two inches wider track. A powder-coated steel front bumper with integrated recovery points and integrated fog lamps is standard.

Heritage Limited models add 17-inch gloss black painted heritage wheels, classic “dog dish” centers and an Oxford White painted lip for a more retro touch.

Checkered fabric seats

Inside, Bronco Heritage Edition units feature plaid cloth seats and exclusive touches such as an Oxford White instrument panel, center console badges and exclusive front and rear floor coverings.

Heritage Edition models come standard with Big Bend® Series equipment and features, including a 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine with a seven-speed manual or optional 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission. The engine delivers up to 300 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque. The Sasquatch package with a High Performance Off-Road Stability Suspension System (HOSS) 2.0 with long-travel Bilstein position-sensitive dampers with limit control valves and increased ride height is standard, as are Goodyear tires 35-inch muddy-terrain wheels and Dana front and rear electronic-locking axles with a 4.7:1 final drive ratio.

Bronco Heritage Edition is available in five paint options. At the same time, Bronco Heritage Limited Edition is exclusively available at launch in Robin’s Egg Blue, a retro color based on Arcadian Blue, available on the original Bronco in 1966. The Yellowstone Metallic color, based on the Ford 1971 Prairie Yellow color, is slated for model year availability in late 2023, and the blue peak is slated for model year 2024.

Heritage Limited Edition models offer the increased capability of Badlands™ Series equipment and features, including a 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine developing up to 330 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque, mated to the 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission. They are also differentiated by features such as the metallic “Bronco” badging on the fenders, the leather/vinyl checkered seats with white and red stitching and the unique Heritage Limited console badging.

Bronco Sport proudly carries the brand’s heritage

Although not part of the Bronco family in the 1960s, Bronco Sport allows customers to enjoy the brand’s heritage with exclusive Heritage and Heritage Limited Edition styling.

“The Bronco Sport has been a hit with compact SUV customers since its arrival two years ago, but it’s equally important that we offer our customers special editions similar to what we did with the two-wheeled Bronco. and four doors,” Grueber said. . “These Heritage Editions are just as important to Sport as they are to the rest of the Bronco brand, and we think the iconic ’60s themes work perfectly on this vehicle.”

All models feature iconic Oxford White accents, including a uniquely painted roof to mimic the original Bronco style. A unique Oxford White heritage grille features Race Red “BRONCO” lettering, while 17-inch Oxford White heritage aluminum wheels and side stripes enhance the retro appearance.

Both versions have common features

Both versions include interior touches such as plaid cloth seats and a Navy Pier dash with Oxford White accenting the bin and door ring. Cloth seats feature a Navy Pier heather with checkered inserts and contrasting Race Red and Robin’s Egg Blue stitching. A unique Navy Pier microsuede center console and armrests feature Race Red stitching. The Bronco Sport MOLLE webbing storage system on the front seatbacks includes Navy Pier webbing and Race Red zipper pulls. The Navy Pier color was inspired by the fabric seats available in Bronco in the 1980s.

Like full-size Bronco SUVs, the 2023 Bronco Sport Heritage Edition is built on the Big Bend series, with the proven 1.5-liter EcoBoost engine developing 181 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque.

The vehicles feature a HOSS system with increased ride height and uniquely adjustable front struts with hydraulic rebound stops designed to provide a quieter, less shocking off-road experience. Plus, 46-millimeter-diameter monotube rear shocks, anti-roll bars and single-tuned springs help deliver off-road comfort.

5 GOAT modes offered

The Terrain Management System offers five GOAT modes because Bronco “goes through any type of terrain” and in various conditions. Standard modes include Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand.

Bronco Sport Heritage Edition is available in seven paint options, including Robin’s Egg Blue, while Heritage Limited Edition is exclusively available in Robin’s Egg Blue, Yellowstone Metallic and Peak Blue.

Heritage Limited Edition models add a metal “Bronco” front fender badge and larger 29-inch all-terrain off-road tires with more aggressive, deeper treads that extend to the sidewalls for better off-road traction. Heritage Limited Edition models also come with leather-trimmed seats and include Oxford White door inserts and a unique badging on the center console.

They’re powered by the increased performance and off-road capabilities of the Badlands Series, including the more powerful 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine with up to 250 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque for high-speed off-road performance. .

Dual clutch rear drive unit

An advanced 4×4 system with a dual-clutch rear drive unit with differential lock can divert all torque from the rear axle to either wheel and the GOAT. The mode system expands to seven modes, adding Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl.

The Bronco Sport Heritage Edition MSRP will start at $34,245 and the Heritage Limited at $44,655. Bronco Heritage will start at $44,305 and Heritage Limited will cost $66,895. For more information on Bronco and Bronco Sport Heritage and Heritage Limited Editions, please visit

Marc Stern has been an automotive writer since 1971, when an otherwise normal news editor said, “You’re our new car editor,” and threw about 27 books of automotive stuff on my desk. I was in heaven because I had been a reducer since my debut. As a teenager, I spent the usual amount of unnecessary hours hanging around Shell and Texaco gas stations (a big thing in my youth) and working on cars. From there it was a straight line to my first column for the newspaper, “You Auto Know”, a business I ran faithfully for 32 years. Few people know that I also managed IT documentation for a good part of my life writing YAN. My best writing, however, has always been in cars. My work has been published in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, etc. You can follow me on: Twitter Where Facebook.


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