This week we are looking at the much-anticipated Ford Bronco Sport. To clear up any confusion, many expected it to be much larger, but that is the Bronco that comes out in the summer of 2021, and it is substantially larger.
I have the Badlands Edition, one of four optional packages available. So you know, the name comes from a National Park in South Dakota. You can also choose from Base, Big Bend, and Outer Banks. A few early adopters got the First Edition model as well as one of the aforementioned packages above. It is a bit confusing, I agree, but my tester is both the First Edition and the badlands package.
If you are a fan of the first Bronco from 1966, you see a lot of styling cues in this new version. It has attractive black wheels, a black top, and the roof is slightly raised above the second-row seat. There are First Edition badges on each front door.
Under the hood, you’ll find a 2.0-liter turbocharged Ecoboost engine putting out 250-horses and 277-pound feet of torque. The engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic with shift paddles and together they take you to 60-miles per hour in a swift 5.7 seconds and it will reach a top speed of 125-miles per hour.
The Badlands edition is 4-wheel drive and very capable off-road yet is a very enjoyable SUV as a daily driver.
Moving to the inside, there are leather seats and the dash and door panels offer up mostly soft-touch materials. As you sit, there are really nice graphics to greet you, both from the driver info center, which is configurable, and the touchscreen in the center.
The 8” touchscreen houses the Sync system, which works extremely well. You can operate the Bluetooth, set up your apps, and configure all the settings of the vehicle.
From there you also operate the B & O sound system, Sirius XM radio, HD radio, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Below that is the button to turn off the start/stop system, and a little farther down is the dual climate control.
The center console offers up two cup holders, a round shift knob, a wireless phone charger, and USB and power port.
Also, there is a button to kick on the 4-wheel drive system and this is where you choose the GOAT modes. Goat stands for Goes Over Any Terrain. You can choose from normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery/Wet, Rock Crawl, Mud/Ruts, and Sand. The gauge cluster changes with each mode and so does this SUV.
Headed to the back seat, head room is good thanks to that raised roof. Rear passengers get air conditioning vents and zipper pockets made into the back of the front seats. Two adults and a child will be fine back there.
The cargo area is roomy, especially with the back seats folded down, and there is all-weather material that lines the cargo area. Neat touches include a built-in bottle opener and a light in the tailgate when raised. I also love that you can open just the rear glass, or the whole tailgate. It even has a real spare tire and wheel underneath.
This Badland Edition I am driving has no options, everything is standard including a power moonroof, rearview camera, reverse sensing, dual power front seats, trailer towing package, the Ford Co-Pilot 360 safety system, keyless entry with remote start, and much more.
Ride and Drive
Driving characteristics are good, the Bronco Sport is quiet inside, handling is terrific, and the ride quality is quite good for a true 4x4 SUV. I am very impressed with the acceleration of the 2-liter Ecoboost.
MSRP and Fuel Economy
Fuel economy is 21 in town, 26 on the highway, and 23 overall. Total MSRP as equipped is $39,655 and if you look at other 4-wheel, off-road capable SUVs, that’s actually a terrific price for what you get.
Just a note: You order these directly from Ford the way you want it, then choose a CarProUSA Certified Ford dealer for delivery. You aren’t likely to find these on the lot.
2021 Ford Bronco Sport Badlands Edition Review
- What I liked most: Love the looks, the handling and acceleration are terrific.
- What I would change: Not a fan of the rotary shifter, seems unnatural.
- MSRP: Base price $38,160, as equipped $39,655 with transportation.
- Fuel Economy: Rated at 21 city/26 highway/23 combined.
- Official Color: Area 51.
- Odometer reading when tested: 4,900 miles.
- Weight: 3,707 pounds.
- Spare Tire: Full-sized spare.
- Length-Width-Height: 172.7” long/74.3” wide/74.4” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 16 gallons with the filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: 2,200 pounds.
- 2021 Bronco Sport in a few words: A cool, compact SUV with a lot of heritage behind it, and a real joy to drive.
- Warranty: 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper, 5-year.60,000 mile powertrain warranty with roadside assistance.
- Final Assembly Location: Hermosillo, Mexico.
- Manufacturers website: www.Ford.com
- Next up: 2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1.