Recently Ford launched its Bronco and Bronco Sport models. Along with that launch came an announcement that Ford was also launching Bronco Off-Rodeos. These are off-road events for Bronco owners. But, the folks at Jeep are not going to stand idly by as their rival makes all the news with these events. So, on Friday, the leadership at Jeep announced new Adventure Academies.
The announcement by Jeep
According to a press release, the Jeep Adventure Academy will provide an off-road, hands-on community experience for Jeep 4×4 owners of all off-road skill levels. At the events, the drivers will receive direction from instructors of the famed Jeep Jamborees. The events will begin in October.
“Off-roading is a rite of passage for Jeep 4×4 owners and the new Jeep Adventure Academy will provide key knowledge every off-roader can use for hitting the trails. The new Jeep Adventure Academy underscores the Jeep brand’s commitment to delivering Jeep 4×4 vehicles that provide owners with a sense of capability, safety and security to handle any condition or adventure with confidence.” – Jim Morrison, Head of Jeep Brand, FCA – North America.
The specifics of the off-road Jeep Adventure Academy
The Jeep Adventure Academy will give the 4×4 owners the opportunity to receive instruction, learn 4×4 system basics, “driving techniques, trail etiquette, vehicle preparation and equipment, how to properly read terrain and challenging obstacles, safety tips and more.” It seems like a well-rounded off-road time.
The academies are for Jeep 4×4 owners and start at $99 per day. Registration for the events is available at jeepadventureacademy.com. The schedule so far is as follows,
- Holly Oaks Off-road Vehicle Park, Holly, Michigan: October 2-4
- Southern Missouri Off-Road Ranch, Seymour, Missouri: October 9-11
- Hollister Hills State Vehicular Recreation Area, Hollister, California: October 16-18
How does this off-road academy relate to Ford and the Bronco?
The introduction of the Bronco has led to a lot of smack talk between the Jeep and Ford off-roading and overlanding camps, even from executives. It’s all in good fun though, because the off-road community is large and is of the mindset of the more the merrier. Appreciation of the outdoors and exploring vehicle capabilities is not copyrighted by any one company. It’s a community thing.
Ford saw that off-road community appeal and, shortly after the launch of the Bronco, it decided to also launch the Bronco Off-Rodeo experiences. These events will have instructors, obstacle courses for Bronco owners with all skill levels, and hiking, kayaking, etc. Does this sound familiar?
Jeep won’t allow upstaging
Jeep recognizes the community appeal and has long supported many off-road events over the decades. But, when Ford announced the creation of the factory-backed Bronco Off-Rodeo events, out of nowhere, Jeep quickly moved to establish the Adventure Academy programs. It seemed like the company wanted to make sure that its Wrangler was not upstaged by the Bronco.
The Jeep Adventure Academy move makes it seem like the two companies are making tit-for-tat exchanges at each other. It is much like the muscle car wars of the 1960s and 1970s between manufacturers. It could be called a polite brawl, which doesn’t make sense on the surface, but it kind of does at the same time. Fun to watch might also be another applicable term.
The off-road one-upping brawl is good for the consumer
In the end, no matter how much each manufacturer improves its product to trump the other, the consumer is left with a winning product and an opportunity to enjoy off-roading like never before. So, a lot of people will be happy. Tread lightly my friends, but have fun!