Dearborn MI — March 9, 2019
Why does an automobile manufacturer spend millions of dollars on motorsports? “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” is the overarching objective. But, there is quite a bit more to the motivations of “factories” involved in what happens on and off the track with race teams representing their automobile brands.
Look no farther than the movie Ford vs Ferrari if you want a peek inside the boardrooms of two automotive titans locked in a battle for name recognition in the world’s ultimate test of man and machine. I can build a vehicle that is faster and will outlast anything you can build.
That same pride is displayed seeing iconic nameplates attached to all types of performance vehicles on and off the track. Ford Mustang, Ford GT, Ford F-150, and now the Ford Bronco. Especially when those monikers end up in victory lane.
Racing innovations have made their way into production vehicles to improve the safety and performance of street vehicles. Nothing tests the durability of component parts like the abuse they are exposed to during a race.
Ford Motor Company has rolled out some exciting model news in the last few years. The Ford Mustang representing the Blue Oval in NASCAR’s premier Cup Series. Reintroducing the Ford Ranger to the midsize truck market. The second-generation Ford GT. Revised Mustang Bullitt and Mustang Shelby GT500 introductions.
However, nothing has caught the attention of Ford fans like the anticipated return of the Ford Bronco. NASCAR fans are crazy over the possibility of owning the iconic brand and it won’t even be raced on the track. A display at Homestead-Miami Speedway of vintage Broncos, during the Championship Weekend, drew rave reviews. Edsel Ford II, the Wood Brothers, Daniel Suarez, and Ryan Blaney visited the event.
Baby Boomers fondly remember the original Bronco. It was a do-everything car/truck combo. Camping, exploring off-roading, hunting, fishing, carrying luggage, toting hockey equipment, even getting groceries, the Bronco could do anything. Now Millennials and Gen Z vehicle owners are checking out the ultimate SUV.
At vintage auctions, you see some incredible restorations. Team Penske NASCAR driver Ryan Blaney had Gateway Bronco build a unique 1974 Ford Bronco that was sold at the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, AZ. It raised $650,000 for Alzheimer’s Disease research through The Ryan Blaney Family Foundation.
The New Ford Bronco and Ford Performance
Ford Performance gives us a quick look at Ford’s Bronco R race prototype in this short introduction video. Unveiled to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Rod Hall’s historic Baja 1000 win.
In an exclusive interview with The Lasco Press, we asked Rob Johnston, Global Marketing Manager for Ford Performance, about the buzz surrounding the new Bronco. “From a Ford Performance perspective, the exciting thing for us when you are marketing Ford cars, trucks SUVs, whatever model it is. It is important that you are reaching out to the core market. But also, reaching out to new audiences, sharing the Ford story with people that may not know us.”
“When you are talking about the market for the new Ford Bronco, there are a lot of traditionalists, a lot of people that know Ford through our trucks, people that are into that lifestyle, those that have connected with us through the Mustang. There is also a large hard-core group of people that do off-roading stuff who don’t know Ford.”
“We are going to have the opportunity to engage with those folks and bring them into the Ford family. That’s part of what the buzz is, there is going to be a great opportunity to showcase the Bronco product to those people. The excitement generated at Ford Performance centers around our leveraging off-road motorsports to reach them.”
While the production model will look different than the off-road racing Bronco R prototype. We are told they are close when it comes to exterior design. The unveiling of the new Bronco is promised for Spring. While that season arrives a little later in Michigan than most other parts of the country, we all eagerly await the Bronco’s coming out party.
Look to the Lasco Press for continuing coverage of the New Ford Bronco.