After many years of rumors and false starts, Ford has finally brought back its most iconic icon to fight off The Icon. You are looking at the newly redesigned Ford Bronco and all it has to offer – and more – is here to lend the fight to Jeep's Wrangler in the big fight. The Ford Bronco is not a replacement for the Jeep Wrangler, but it is more than a competent alternative.
One of the most noticeable design elements of the new Ford Bronco is its unique fender flares. Although fender flares on other Ford vehicles have been around for some time, the new Ford Bronco's flare is a lot more radical. From the factory, the Ford Bronco's fender flares are different in shape and material than any other model in Ford's lineup. In fact, they are so dissimilar from the older Ford vehicles that it may be difficult to spot them amongst the clutter of SUVs and other Ford pickup trucks. So how did such a radical change come about?
To start with, there were two main reasons why Ford decided to remove fender flares on Broncs and replace them with the new Jeep Wrangler name. The first reason was to allow for greater visibility on wet and snow-prone areas, which is especially true of off-road adventures. The other was to make Broncs more practical, and to make them more readily adaptable to a wide variety of driving scenarios. While these two reasons certainly helped the design of the Ford Bronco, the real reason that Bronco flares are now available is because they really work!
If you look hard enough, you can find several examples of just how effective a Bronco bumper can be. Take, for instance, a Jeep Wrangler. If you drive along the edge of a sand trap and find yourself surrounded by deep pools of water (or other deep, mud-filled conditions), then the appearance of a fender flare on your Jeep Wrangler is sure to stand out. On the other hand, take the same situation on the highway and you'll soon find yourself passing through an area that has a lot of asphalt – and very little if any road debris on the side of the road, like rocks or other rubble.
It all comes down to one fundamental measurement: the crawl ratio. The crawl ratio is a standard set number used to calculate the clearance required for driving through an obstacle. Simply put, the higher this number is, the better your clearance will be in an accident. For most drivers, this isn't an issue, but for off-road drivers it becomes critical. When you're stuck in a sandy area with high levels of water and/or sand, you can quickly find yourself having trouble clearing both your vehicle and other obstacles that you encounter as you travel over uneven terrain. Ford Bronco owners who want to get the most from their vehicles should do what they can to improve their crawl ratio – and the result is a truck that drive better off-road than any other model in the Bronco lineup.
One way to improve the grade of your Ford Bronco's ride is to upgrade to a high-end turbo-mild edition of the Ford Bronco. This upgrade significantly raises the car's clearance level in a very short amount of time, which allows for much smoother highway travel and a marked improvement in ride and handling. Even if your current Ford Bronco doesn't have an upgrade, Ford's Garage Off-Road Evinrude offers a great deal of extra clearance for a much higher price. So the question remains… why would anyone spend less money on a Ford Bronco that already has all the benefits of a turbo-mild Mustang-based SUV?