Ford Authority

Baby Ford Bronco Spied Testing For The First Time

We already saw the upcoming baby Ford Bronco last year thanks to a leaked presentation captured during a dealer meeting, which Ford then requested we remove. But now, we have our first look at the integrated prototype for the ruggedized future Ford crossover, which we believe will be called Ford Bronco Scout or Ford Adventurer.

What we see is a relatively small crossover utility vehicle undergoing testing on an off-road trail. But unlike the all-new 2020 Ford Escape and its car-like design, this baby Ford Bronco wears a rather rugged shape characterized by sharp, upright edges.

At the front, an upright fascia and windshield join with a rather horizontal hood and roof that do not have that aerodynamically-friendly “swept back” design. Instead, each of the sections has a transition that’s very squared off, rather than rounded.

The front end has a relatively long overhang, though it’s clear engineers and designers put in effort to minimize it in order to improve the approach angle. We can also see a hint of those round headlights that were present on the teaser image (below) released by Ford in March of 2018.

The side also features a rather slab-like profile, though the camouflage makes it difficult to see what’s taking place between the C- and D-pillars. There is also an interesting “raised” treatment on the roof. The good news is that there is a decent amount of ground clearance and available space in the wheel well for suspension travel. Both elements hint that the upcoming baby Bronco will have a sufficient amount of off-road capability.

The rear end has some a relatively short overhang, which gives this prototype a funny shape. The angled, boxy shape carries over into the rear end, with an abrupt end to the roofline and a near-vertical drop to the hatch and haunches.

As you look over these photos, do keep in mind that this is a prototype wearing a decent amount of camo, which seems to obfuscate the final design.

Unlike the “regular” Bronco, which will be based on a body-on-frame platform, this baby Ford Bronco will be based on the same architecture as the 2020 Ford Escape, known as the Ford C2 platform. A lineup of turbocharged four, and possibly three, cylinder engines are expected. A hybrid variant is possible, as is a plug-in hybrid version. Front-wheel-drive will likely be standard, and a customizable all-wheel-drive system will be available.

A teaser image of the upcoming “baby” Ford Bronco

The vehicle will be part of Ford’s two-vehicle strategy for new Bronco, thereby creating a Bronco family. However, there are whispers that this model might use the Adventurer name, instead of the Bronco Scout moniker.

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  1. Harry

    I’d prefer to see a 2 row Everest rather than this. Why don’t they do to the Everest what they did to the International Ranger?
    The Everest for the International markets seems to be what the US market needs, with a few modifications to meet the US requirements. This baby will have a lot of competition form the small Jeeps; The Everest could have a market with less competition. I realize the Everest might be a little more expensive, but probably worth it. The Everest would be more main stream and the regular Bronco for customizing and off road.

  2. trailhiker

    Looking good so far. This is the direction the original Escape should have went.
    Padding on roof to cover rails is throwing off the proportions in the pictures.

    1. Thomas Wagner

      totally agree.

  3. Adithya Ramachandran

    The proportions look a lot like the Mid 90’s Land rover discovery. Hope it does not have as many oil issues.

  4. Thomas Wagner

    I’ve always wondered how auto writers know what make some heavily camouflaged vehicle is – a Ford or Buick or Honda or Maserati. Especially when it’s out on some random road in the middle of nowhere???? I find this write-up interesting. Alex states that he can “see those round headlights that were present on the teaser image” – what!?!?!?! there are small cut outs in the camo for the headlights that barely show a headlight let alone the shape. He also references the decent amount of ground clearance and front overhang is still relatively long – I don’t really see either of those. I love these “spied” photo articles that keep us abreast of upcoming product, not so crazy about the creative writing. Regardless of the creative interpretation here, I am eagerly awaiting this new Ford and the upcoming Chevy TrailBlazer. I’m in the market for a new vehicle and have put off purchasing something in anticipation of both vehicles (they can’t get here soon enough).

    On a side note, I’ve also heard the name “Maverick” used, Ford resurrecting a fabled name from its past – how cool would that be!?!?!

    1. Alex Luft


      Look closely, and you’ll see that the projector beams in the prototype are a dead-on match for those in the teaser image. As for the front overhang, yes, it’s long. Not as long as that of the Escape, and not as short as that of a rear-drive-based offroad vehicle like a Jeep Wrangler… but still relatively long. You’re not going to hit a steep approach with that overhang out front. Whether or not breaking news pieces could be written better is a different matter altogether, but do keep in mind that these pieces are written at lighting speed to bring our readers the latest news in a timely manner.

      As for how one knows what a certain prototype is: I won’t speak for anyone else except for myself here, but the process involves a significant amount of good ol’ journalism – developing and nurturing insider sources, speaking to them frequently, keeping abreast of the latest developments and making sure that nothing falls through the cracks. All that, along with a very good understanding of the industry, future product plans, exceptional product knowledge, and a dose of intuition, and you have yourself a professional automotive journalist.

      As of the writing of this comment, this vehicle will not be called Maverick. Stay tuned on that front.

  5. M K

    Starting to take on the shape of the Edge which is horrible in my view. Let’s hope it is the camo effect.

  6. John

    Looks a bit like the Hammerhead Eagle I-Thrust from top gear. Given it is awd, I wonder if Ford will go the rally styling angle. Be sort of cool if they had a Subaru competitor.


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