Off-Road: Ford Bronco Everglades Wants to Be King of the Swamp

by TK Sanders

The Ford Bronco made waves decades ago as the industry’s first popular small SUV, and now it wants to make waves for a different reason.

Originally conceived as a cross between a small truck and a station wagon, the Bronco stood tall like a sport utility vehicle; but also offered room enough for both a family and a working class functionality. The Bronco fell out of style as auto manufacturers drifted toward massive, gas-guzzling SUVs with longer and longer back-ends.

Then something interesting happened: the Bronco developed a cult-like following thanks to a mix of nostalgia and modern tastes. Classic Broncos became passion projects as consumers shift toward smaller, more eco-friendly SUVs that don’t sacrifice power and toughness.

The Bronco Everglades is a natural progression of the original

Ford took notice, of course, and began retooling the Bronco into something that no other auto manufacturer really attempts at the moment, perhaps other than Jeep. New Broncos blend modern luxury with the same boxy, rugged style of yesteryear. The result is a mid-size SUV with factory additions like snorkels and removable panelling that also offer a bit more storage space and height than the classic Jeep Wrangler.

The new Bronco Everglades 4×4 pretty much explains its offerings in the vehicle’s name. Equipped with a factory-installed snorkel-type air intake on the passenger side A-pillar that keeps it clear of water, mud and dust, the Bronco Everglades wants to attract buyers who enjoy outdoor expeditions without the six-figure price tag of comparable full-size SUVs.

Pricing for the Everglades starts at around $55,000 and sales are scheduled to begin this summer. Ford promises five colors, including Eruption Green, Area 51, Shadow Black, Cactus Gray, and a model-exclusive Desert Sand. The Everglades option also comes with a 10,000 pound, a front safari bar, rock rails, bash plates, a removable hardtop with roof rack and Everglades graphics all standard.

Currently, ordering is only open for existing Bronco reservation holders, according to Fox News.

Ford may revolutionize the entire auto industry with a new patent

According to an industry report, Ford may soon replace the entire clutch in its vehicles. Basically, the idea completely scraps the physical connection between the gas pedal and the throw-out bearing. Therefore, the car’s clutch would engage by an electronic control based on algorithmic sensor inputs.

The clutch system would have a control module to engage the clutch. It would let the driver shift gears by moving the gear stick by itself. The patent involves the driver grasping the lever and moving by a shift knob sensor that disengages the clutch. Afterwards, the clutch would reengage when the vehicle understood the shift was over.

And if you, the consumer, still wanted a clutch, you could get one. The clutch would connect through the control module instead of a physical hookup to the clutch master cylinder.