When critics offer first drives and reviews of new model vehicles, they are usually quick to point out flaws and missed expectations. And when a particular vehicle makes a comeback after having been in retirement for decades, the expectations of this new ride are high. We’re talking about the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport. It’s an SUV that comes with a historical reputation for being extremely versatile and off-road capable. So, a new version of this classic behemoth has to out-perform even its own shadow, right? The critics are driving it now, and the first looks suggest this new Bronco is really good at precisely what you’d expect.
High off-road expectations
Sure, yesterday’s Ford Bronco was completely capable of off-road adventuring. But today’s SUVs have improvements, new technology, and design science behind every ride. To compete today, there are some hefty expectations on the shoulders, or fenders, of the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport. To keep with its reputation, the new variation of the Bronco needs to bring its A-game in a big way.
Must-have features if the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport wants to compete
If the newest Ford Bronco Sport wants to really compete in today’s off-road capable class, it’s going to need to be equipped with a few basics. Ground clearance is important for crawling over angles and low overhangs. But today’s SUVs also need skid plates, all-terrain tires, locking rear differentials, and the all-wheel or four-wheel-drive options.
And then comes the in-cabin tech to ensure a drama-free off-road experience. Some SUVs offer different modes, allowing drivers to select the vehicle’s engagement based on the terrain ahead. And it’s these digital enhancements that most consumers expect today’s comparable and thrill-seeking SUVs to have.
So, does the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport deliver?
The body-on-frame beast is back, and the 2021 Ford Bronco is primed to deliver on everything you’d expect it to dominate. The lower end Big Bend and Outer Banks trims offer a 1.5-liter three-cylinder, with the 4WD and eight-speed auto transmission. And the beefy off-road upgrades to the Badlands or First Edition trims get the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder capable of producing 245 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque. And when it’s actually time to head off-pavement, the Bronco brings more features than most in its class.
The first reviews are coming in
The MotorTrend team put the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport through the paces and over some rigorous terrain. And every time they anticipated a tired response, the Bronco Sport kept pushing. The off-road experience is what you’d expect and then some, with great in-cabin tech and boulder-hungry capabilities. And the control lies within the power of the driver. In the center console is a knob featuring G.O.A.T. modes, as a throwback to the original Bronco. The “Goes Over Any Terrain” translates to five-plus various mode selections, based on the landscape ahead.
Edmunds points out the all-terrain capabilities far exceed what you’d normally find with other, more typical SUVs. The features are smart, like the front-facing camera, as an example. Customizing your 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is easy too, with ample amenities from which to choose. The style is rugged enough to tackle a weekend on the dunes. And the Bronco Sport is a super-quiet easy mover on the pavement for daily driving, which is virtually unheard of with all-terrain tires.
The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport won’t disappoint and delivers exactly what you’d expect. It honors its roots and historical reputation for being a boxy, versatile, and capable off-road companion. But it also harnesses today’s must-have adventure features, making it a true gem in its class. Whether you’re crawling over rocky trails or just parking at the grocery store, the Bronco Sport will perform with ease.