Will We See the New Bronco at NAIAS?
The 2016 North American International Auto Show is rapidly approaching (the media days start next Monday), and we’re still not sure what to really expect from Ford during their announcement. Sure, there’s probably going to be some talk of electrification, since that’s what Mark Fields emphasized before Christmas, but what about a Bronco?
We have reason to believe that a new Bronco is eventually coming. Why? Because Ford is moving their car production to Mexico but not shutting down their Michigan Assembly plant. Since all the trucks are already built elsewhere, a new product would likely have to come in to that plant to keep it open. That plant is likely going to be for the Ranger.
But Ranger production won’t take up the capacity of that plant, especially early on, so what else would go there? A platform-mate like a Bronco starts to make a ton of sense.
The speculation also predicts that the Bronco would be a 2018 model year product. That means that if it were going to be an actual 2018 product, following Ford’s history with the Raptor and the Super Duty (announcing the 2017 versions in 2015, two years in advance), then we should see a Bronco concept this year.
Will we see it at NAIAS? Who knows? I’d think by now we would’ve heard more about the product through some leaks this close to the show. I reached out to Ford for a comment, and Ford’s William Mattiace had this to say;
We don’t comment on future product speculation.
If that were Steve Jobs, that comment right there would be confirmation. Steve Jobs said the iPod would never do video shortly before the iPod Video came to market.
There are a few days yet where some information might be leaked. Last year, just before the NAIAS reveal of the Ford GT, Ford’s floor plans for the show leaked showing where the products would be on display. It was clear from that leak that the Ford GT was coming, so it wasn’t as much of a surprise when Bill Ford and Mark Fields announced it on stage at Joe Louis Arena.
The thing with concept vehicles is that they’re often made by hand. It’d be most likely easier to build a Ranger concept, since they can use a global Ranger as a base. But the Bronco would be all new. That doesn’t mean that it won’t happen, just I think we’d have heard something about it by now.
But I guess, in the end, that doesn’t mean anything either. Why? Because Ford kept the GT under wraps for several years while it was in development. When Ford wants to keep a secret, they certainly are capable of it.
What will happen at NAIAS? We’ll just have to wait to find out.
What do you think? Let us know in the forums!