After a painful twenty-one-year absence, Ford announced the immensely popular Bronco nameplate is on its way back in the near future. The automaker confirmed both the Ranger pickup truck and the Bronco will return to the U.S, the former in in 2019 and the latter in 2020.
This isn’t exactly a surprise, thanks in part to a loose-lipped UAW boss letting slip earlier last year that the Bronco and Ranger will be built in Michigan. President-elect Donald Trump leveraged criticism at the U.S. automaker for moving small car production to Mexico, a decision that has since changed. “We hate to see the products go to Mexico,” said UAW Local 900 plant Chairman Bill Johnson, who represents workers at Ford’s Wayne, Mich., plant. “But with the Ranger and the Bronco coming to Michigan Assembly that absolutely secures the future for our people a lot more than the Focus does.”
At the 2017 Detroit auto show, Ford gave official credence to the leak. According to the automaker, the compact truck and SUV will both be built at the Wayne, MI plant.
This is great news for enthusiasts, but if you’re hoping for a boxy, slab-sided throwback to the Broncos from the 1980s and 1990s, you’re probably going to be disappointed. It’s likely the current Ford Ranger already sold overseas will receive a facelift for the U.S. market, and bring the Ranger-based Everest SUV with it as the next-generation Bronco. Think less two-door brick, more off-road Ford Edge. Regardless, we’re just happy to have the Bronco and Ranger back on our shores.
Look for more information on the two trucks later this year.