The Saturday SitRep

Blog Post


Ford’s 2021 Bronco

What do you think? I actually want to know. They’re not expensive at $30K, and I’m considering replacing the Honda Accord with one.

2021 Ford Bronco

And to be fair about it, I haven’t done much research. It looks a lot like my Toyota FJ, but fourteen years newer. At present, I keep the Accord for long haul trips. With the independent front suspension, the Bronco should be good on the highway. I haven’t done that much research and generally wait for the first production year to pass before I get serious.


The Never-Ending Debate


An Update on China

From bank runs to the crumbling Three Gorges Dam (more here), and other woes.


A-7 Corsairs over AZ


Picture of a Corn Field – at Night

Space aliens are drawn to places like this, where they leave patterns in the corn. Nobody knows why.

Ok, maybe this guy does.

48 thoughts on “The Saturday SitRep

  1. Sames platform as an Escape?
    Is this merely cosmetic?
    First Bronco was F-150 based. Frame rails.
    Bronco II was Ranger based. Frame rails.
    Bronco (III?) Escape based. Half-frame.
    How much would you off-road an Escape?
    Then again they say it gives Jeep nightmares.
    With lots of option choices for off-roading.

    1. I have two 4×4’s but in the winter, you need it. I don’t know about the frame, but it’s in an off-road and possibly off-trail format – with likely a lot of after market stuff that will be produced for it. The Toyota FJ is very capable on unimproved roads and off-trail, cross country. As with the Bronco, it has an independent front suspension that makes it less effective in extreme rock crawling, but I don’t do that these days.

      I live on an improved dirt road, which means that it’s not a rock crawl to get to hardball, but neither is it paved. I need to do a crawl under a Bronco to take a look at how its put together. I did that on my Raptor and had mixed feelings about it, but 6 years later, I like the Raptor (juiced up F-150).

      The Bronco has a smaller engine and I’m going to guess that the fuel economy isn’t bad, with gearing for trail conditions?

          1. Car and Driver preview and analysis is here:


            I wasn’t in the market for a vehicle like that (no bed out back) so I didn’t research it at all.

            The interiors on Fords have gone downhill over the last few years, especially on the base models. Very cheap materials, very cheap looking and feeling. It’s the main reason we scratched the Ranger from our list. That and the fact that the only engine is the EcoBoost 4 cylinder, and we wanted a V6.

            And if the new Bronco is like other Ford trucks, it gets pretty expensive really fast when you start adding options to it…..

        1. They are supposed to keep (some) branches from smashing your windshield.


  2. I am not sold on the transparent doors for everyday driving. How would they hold up driving offroad? What size engine are they offering? Any possibilities for engine/transmission upgrades? I sure do like the A-7s, a cool plane!

    1. I think that they have two engine options but I don’t know that much about the rig, which is why I posted here.

  3. yeah you hit on it, never on the first couple years off the drawing board. too many kinks to work out….aliens? gotta be just a matter of time. …china- couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch, including the traitors here that let greed take them over. just hope they don’t do a launch all ordnance upon exiting.

    1. Dad swore off Fords after he bought a large diesel dualie for hauling a large 5th-wheel trailer around the country in retirement. It was the first year for that engine, and it was a dog. Constant repairs and software updates, and more than once it broke down again after getting 20 miles out of town. Ford handled it badly and treated Dad worse. I know he wanted Ford to take it back as a lemon, but I don’t remember what happened with it. In any case, he replaced it with a Freightliner and was very happy with that purchase. The only time it was in the shop for very long was in south Texas when a sheriff’s deputy involved in a high-speed pursuit of suspected drug smugglers took a turn a little wide and clipped him with his rear end going the other way.

        1. I had a problem with a brand new Ford Capri in about 1979 or so (not sure of the year), and dumped it for a Toyota 4×4 pick up. My next Ford was the 2014 Raptor, which I still have and like. I drive the raptor on dirt roads but don’t beat the crap out of it the way that some have. It’s allegedly capable of being beat up but I have my doubts. It’s a beefy F-150 with very good suspension. It’s not a tank. My sense is that the development of the Bronco followed that of the Raptor, which would be a good thing.

          Keep in mind that my Toyota FJ Cruiser (2007) has some Toyota parts and a lot of after market kit that I either bought, designed and had made or made myself. If I bought a Bronco, it would likely suffer the same fate with heavy steel skid plates, maybe an auxiliary fuel tank, heavy steel bumpers and other stuff. AND while the performance might suffer because of the weight of those parts, it would make it a much tougher rig on the trail…rocks aren’t going to rip the belly out.

  4. I’m sure at 30,000 it won’t include locking differentials or floatation tires. But it does look like a serious contender.

    1. The rear locker can’t be that expensive. Toyota did it on the FJ at about the same price point.

      1. Base model plus Sasquatch package gets you Front and rear lockers and 35 inch tires for around 33,000. I’m intrigued. I’m sure there will be big after market support. I’m sure subframe connectors to stiffen the unibody will be on the market soon.
        I like it.

  5. The Bronco? I’d wait to see what the off-roaders do to it over the next two years.

    China? Communist China is asshole. They can suck it. I only consider Taiwan to be China anymore.

    Creeks are Injuns. Cricks are rivulets of water.

    A-7s. Nice. AirNatGuard A-7s beat the snot out of the A-10 boys for years in gunnery and bombing competitions. Old age and treachery wins every time.

    As to cornfields. Yeah… no… I’ll leave cornfields to the professionals.

  6. I think anything over 10K (the most I’ve ever paid for a vehicle) is expensive. But, I certainly wouldn’t turn down that cute rig.

    1. I checked out the website. They are even more interesting. I’ll have to wait until they come out and I can actually kick the tires.

  7. It’s crick… LOL And those look like VA-105 Gunslinger A-7Es. Good birds, but it took 1.5 men to fly it to its full capability, per a Navy Captain who flew them in combat.

      1. Oh, yeah…..”Creek” or “Crick”?

        It’s “Creek” when printed on a map, and “Crick” in conversation.

  8. We have cricks around here. If you want Creeks, the rez is in Oklahoma.
    In China the flooding and the possibility of famine are things to watch. I understand the Chinese can’t produce enough to feed themselves in the best of times.

    1. The Chinese will rely on the US to feed them, unless there is a war. They’re not in the best of places right now.

    1. There seems to be a lot of enthusiasm for them, which the other manufacturers may be envious of. Toyota dumped the FJ because it wasn’t expensive enough. You could buy two for the price of a 4-Runner. From what I’ve read, the new Bronco runs between 30K and 60K depending on what you want to do with it. That’s a realistic price point range.

  9. ide say it’s a decent value being Ford but it’s no Bronco. I’ve owned a few of the originals and I really think they just missed the pass for the breakaway. They couldn’t build enough of them in that configuration.

    1. The original Broncos and Blazers were exceptionally tough. If they simply came back with those SAME rigs and dropped diesel engines in them, no big frills, just HARD and MEAN, I’d lay the cash down tomorrow. Steel bumpers, 37″ tires, kevlar seat covers (never tear or rip), no carpet, metal kick plates on the lower 1/3 of the interior doors, no push buttons, just levers including crank windows. Built to last 500K miles. Of course that’s some sort of fantasy on my part, but I’d sell the Raptor and the FJ and just buy that and drive it until I died.

  10. There’s a lot to conjure with in this post. Rigs, Space Aliens, Corn, A-7s and on. Where do I stand?

    The Corsair’s definitely cool and you need one at the Mine, that’s easy. A Bronco to replace the ‘hopper? Maybe that’s greedy. Then there’s corn and aliens. What to do? Destroy them utterly with your ME 262.

    Problem? Solution.

    Just trying to help.

  11. The Bronco Sport will be the same platform as the Escape. Ford also makes a 4×4 Police Interceptor out of the Escape platform.

    The Bronco is on the same platform as the new Ranger. If you get one you need the Sasquatch package regardless of the trim as it has the locking differentials and suspension components to allow oversize tires. I see it as a direct challenger to the Jeep Wrangler but in a slightly more expensive package with better engines (2.3L I4 & 2.7L V6 Ecoboost engines).

    I have been stung by first year models too many times. I will wait till it is at least 3 years old. I also need a truck. I have two years before I can get anything fairly new. I will keep the 04 Ranger until the wife’s car is paid off and I can save up a good down payment. I am hoping Jeep will offer more engine choices in the Gladiator.

    1. See my comment above to Klaus. That is what SOMEBODY needs to build. Diesel engines, and just rock hard. The Jeep Gladiator isn’t a bad choice, but it’s only about 3/4 of what it needs to be. I realize that they cave to focus groups and to demographics who never take it off a hardball road and want to look fabulous at the mall, as well as people who want to wheel it.

      1. Anyone contemplating a Gladiator would do well to remember it’s pretty much a stretched, reinforced, Wrangler. As such it’s almost “Sports Car Narrow” (very good for off-road), and the roll cage structure intrudes several inches into an already small passenger compartment.

        If I was 25 years younger I would have been all over it, but at “My Age” it was difficult to get in and out of, and Sweet Little Wife and I felt *this close* to being cramped.

        TRY one before you commit.

        Otherwise, they’re really nice trucks! Too bad I just don’t fit that lifestyle any longer…..

  12. Apparently the website crashed due to the number of people trying to put a deposit down (per the Hagerty website). That kind of buzz means additional dealer markup of $5k or more, plus poor QC at the factory due to pressure to get cars sold. And the Honda is a lot less conspicuous. Give it a couple of years to see if the quality is there and let them fix any glaring problems.

    1. Roamer, I waited until 2014 to buy a Raptor for that very reason and am generally happy with it. It’s not my ideal truck, but that truck doesn’t exist. It has a big V-8, it’s powerful and fast with excellent suspension. I don’t put a lot of miles on these rigs, and less now that I live in the mountains at the mine. Nobody looks twice at a gray Honda, which is one reason that I bought it. Most of my miles go on the Honda, and it’s a really excellent car in all respects. The Accord Touring really checks a lot of the boxes for me, except that it’s not 4×4 and in the dead of winter, it just sits there because (literally) I can’t get it up the steep driveway until spring. But I have other rides. The question of what to replace it with when the time comes has caused me to ponder. I could just buy another Accord. I’m not fond of Honda’s Passport (4×4) and I am frankly not THAT pleased with Ford in general in terms of fit and finish compared to Honda.

      1. honda has that new system that locks the brakes if something tries to block you from behind. could be very ..inconvenient.

        1. For their cars, or for the Ridgeline?

          The Honda smart cruise control, which is smart, sometimes locks up if you’re in the #1 lane, passing a big rig in the #2 lane, and THAT is inconvenient.

  13. The new Bronco seems decent, but I agree with the “wait a couple years and see” consensus. Ford did a good job with the Raptor, so it’s plausible.

    If you take all the bits off the 4-door model, it sort of looks like a Dodge Combat Car, so that’s cool.


  14. Watts Up With That reports that Vice magazine did a review of the Bronco and said, “The New Ford Bronco Is An Obscene Monument to Climate Denialism.”

    Given how some of us in the target market view that statement, Ford should print it out poster sized and display them in the dealership. Yeah, it will dissuade some people, but my guess is those will be soccer moms and other housewives.

    As for the real merits of it, my experience with my ’09 Explorer and my wife’s ’13 Mustang tells me that Fords simply aren’t well-made anymore. I used to prefer Fords but not after this. In both cars, the drive train is fine, everything that’s attached to the drive train (A/C, electrical, environmental) is less good, while the bodies and interior trim are falling apart.

    1. It doesn’t have an electric motor, thus, the Democrats plan to squash it like a bug when they get their Green New Deal.

      Though I’d want the vehicle, maybe in bronze (as a monument) somewhere on the property as a monument to be revered…

      1. Have you looked into what it would cost to find an appropriate Bronco body, and have it built to your specs?
        Was it first or second gen, and do you have a particular diesel engine in mind?

        1. I’m building up a 1948 Willy’s at the moment. I may do that when I’m finished with the Jeep, which may receive a VW diesel simply because they seem to be the most readily available for the size that I need.

          1. There are people who are swapping that VW TDI into Ford Rangers. Part of the attraction is the ability to get serious HP with various tweeks to the ECU system. Tire shredding burnouts with that setup. Can’t do it in CA, of course.
            I’m wondering if the engines from all those recalled VW’s for smog faking are available. They bought back my sister’s wagon, and she replaced it with some sort of Audi.

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