With the UAW hard at work trying to ratify a tentative labor agreement with Ford Motor Company, new life has been breathed into the possibility that the automaker’s Michigan Assembly Plant could add the Ranger mid-size pickup and a new Ford Bronco to its list of products.
But what form might such a Ford Bronco take? The SUV exited the market back in 1996, meaning that any contemporary namesake would obviously look radically different from the ute when last seen. Before, we had reported on one possible contender for the Ford Bronco nameplate: Brazil’s Troller SUV. The current Troller model, the T4, rides on the same T6 platform as the current-generation Ford Ranger. It also features a fiberglass body – something which would certainly have to go before it could ever be rebadged and sold in the US as a Ford Bronco – but a T4 successor could quite easily be made palatable (and legal) for US sale.
But now, the folks at Australian site Motoring have us thinking about another, much more likely Ford Bronco candidate: the Ford Everest. Designed in Australia, and built in Thailand, the Everest has been steered clear of the US market since its inception possibly due to its overlap with the Expedition, Explorer, and Flex SUVs. But unlike the Explorer and the Flex, it utilizes a body-on-frame construction, and where the Expedition is based on the full-size F-150 platform, the Everest uses – yep, you guessed it – the T6 platform of the Ford Ranger.
In other words, like the Brazilian Troller T4, the Ford Everest SUV has the right combination of construction and platform to make it a “true” SUV worthy of the Ford Bronco name. But unlike the Troller, the Everest is already a recognized, Ford-badged offering, and a glaring omission from the “one global Ford” vision of Alan Mulally.
Ultimately, the Everest looks like a viable candidate for the Ford Bronco of the future.