Afro

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Loooong time lurker here (way before pineapple pizza was conceived) but I got the previlege of attending the Bronco ride along event.

I'm on the opposite spectrum at 5'3" and the Bronco was fine for me climbing in. The side steps helped but would honestly be fine without it.

Rode both the Bronco Sport, Bronco, and Bronco R.

BRONCO SPORT
Rode in a Badlands w/ 2.0L. I think we can all agree that we wrote off the Sport as nothing but an escape with some off-road trim and drive modes (thats how we described it internally as well) but it was the most shocking experience for me.

The sport was fast and plenty of torque and power to tackle the hills and loose sand they had planned. The first hill climb was approx 19degrees and we cruised it with little effort. The driver made changes to the drive mode on the fly, no need to pull over to select which mode you wanted.

My favorite section was when we went full send down a hill and banked left across some loose sand, whipping the rear end out and essentially doing a 4-wheel drift. Each wheel has active torque vectoring, similar to the FocusRS. Once we were near the apex of the turn, the driver put in more power and we sailed right through the remainder of the sand and went straight into a smaller hill. This trim level had a front camera which came in handly for those blindspots esp when traversing hills or blind turns. I think it automatically comes on once your vehicle reached a minimum angle but there was probably a switch you can activate to manually turn it on as well.

The Sport was quiet. We had the A/C on full blast and all you heard was the piped in engine noise. Couldnt even hear the road or NVH noise from going full send on the entire coarse. Pretty nice if you want the creature comforts while off the beaten path.

Overall, i was pleasantly surprised at what the Sport can do. Its got plenty of power and torque and off-road capability and honestly, this vehicle would satisfy what most Bronco customers would want. If you want a soft offroader or even a rally-orientated vehicle that literally feels like its floating above dirt roads, the sport is perfect for you.

BRONCO
Rode in a 2DR (forgot which trim) w/ the 2.7, 10spd, (update: on 35" tires / Sasquatch Package). and with all the roof panels removed. This is probably the spec i would get - 2DR, 2.7, 10spd. I was able to adjust the seat height (fore-aft, up-down) so that my arm could comfortably rest on the belt line, although i never had it out since i was clutching the door trim handle and oh-sh*t handle during the duration of the ride.

All i can say is that the Bronco is fast! I've driven a F150 SuperScrew with the 2.7 and the Bronco felt way quicker even though we were only on dirt/sand. I'd imagine being on pavement would feel even faster. It was just so nimble and manuevered the course like nothing. There were times when i thought the driver over shot the turns and he just steered and power through into those turns like cakework.

I didnt noticed the 10spd at all. I would imagine these were broken in enough that the transmission has already "learned" how the driver was driving.

The Bronco just like the sport ate that first hill climb with little effort. No surprise there. What surprised me was, along the course we did a hill descent that was measured on the dash at 30degrees. We were literally stopped on the hill to measure it and the Bronco didnt even slide, flinch, or what have you. Might be an exagerration but I felt like i was facing straight down on that 30degree gradient. All i can say is impressive! (Update: Video doesnt do it justice but POV view of 30deg gradient here).

Drive modes and rear/front lockers were all on-demand. The driver was switching between front and rear lockers throughout the duration of the ride. We didnt do any rock crawling. The closest we did was drive up two concrete slabs so not enough to describe how it would do. I think we can agree all the Rubicon and Moab videos show the Bronco is more than capable.

Overall, the Bronco compared to the Sport had more substantial felt body roll. That's expected since you have a combination of a higher ride height, Cg, and rear solid axle. Honestly, that's all part of the Bronco experience.

BRONCO R
This was a treat. I didnt expect we would get to ride along in the racing prototype. The course selected was catered specifically to the R and it ate all the whoops, dips, ruts, jumps, etc like nothing. It was a much better experience compared to the regular Bronco obviously because of the upgraded suspension and increased travel. We had a few moments of airtime when we crest over the hills and small jumps. I was smiling ear to ear the entire ride and absolutely enjoyed this experience.


If you want a smoother ride experience with less felt body rolls without sacrificing offroad capabilites, you cant go wrong with the Sport.

If you want a Bronco because its a Bronco then dont compromise. You wont regret it.

Funny sidenote: Throughout the event, there were a few guest employees that were getting "sick" because of the ride along. The Ford drivers certainly pushed us hard along the course and I dont think the ones that got sick will ever push their personal Broncos as hard as what we experienced. But just some food for thought if you ever have passengers that are sensitive to motion sickness; wouldnt want someone to spill their lunch all over your new Bronco.





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Afro

Afro

Badlands
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  • Thread starter
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how does the engine sound on the 2.7?
Honestly, i dont remember. i was more focused on the ride experience and keeping my ass planted in the seat. Having the roof off didnt help either with the increased wind noise.

Outside of the vehicle, the 2.7 sound nice as it drove off into the course.
 

DustyD

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Great report- sounds like an awesome day!

I agree about the Sport, I'm guilty of writing it off but I saw a pic of the yellow Badlands (maybe the same one you rode in) and it looked really good. Trying to get my wife in one so we have both in the yard to play with.
 

SamG

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How is the visibility compared to the wrangler?

when i test drove a wrangler a few years ago i hated it.
Likely won't be anything like your CRV. True body on frame SUV's all have a very similar visibility.. tho ironically when the roof is removed you have an objectively better view of your sides and rear than any type of CRV. Escape...etc
 

SamG

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Your comment was about the Sport...but does the regular Bronco pipe in engine noise as well?
This is common place on almost all 'performance' oriented vehicles now.

source: I was responsible for sourcing speakers for all ford vehicles for a short period of time.
 

Carolina Jim

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This is common place on almost all 'performance' oriented vehicles now.
source: I was responsible for sourcing speakers for all ford vehicles for a short period of time.
thanks....comes in thru radio speakers? ...even with the radio off???
 

GotGOAT

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That my friend was a fantastic write up! It really captured the experience.
I am not a buyer but, the Bronco Sport is pretty cool and really has a lot of capability.
I love your description of the 2 door Bronco with the 2.7TT/10spd because that is what I am getting. I have been waiting since I last drove. Bronco II in high school (1984-88).
Thanks for covering the seat adjustment and arm to window sill factors.
I bet you had a giant grin the whole time, I am “Jelly”!
 

Desert_6G

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I'm curious on wind noise with the top on as well as overall height on 33" with a hard top. It has to fit in my garage with a 2-3" lift.
 

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