Bronco Victorious In Ultra4 El Rey de Las Bajas Event!
We recently reflected on the importance of Ford's "Win on Sunday – Sell on Monday" doctrine and how it reflects on the 2021 Bronco. It looks like competitive success is a big part of the Bronco's appeal -- not just now but well into the future as well -- and classic Broncos have left an enormous mark on the off-road racing community. That's why Ford introduced the Bronco R, Bronco 4400 Stock, and Bronco 4600 Unlimited racing models for competition in all significant off-road classes.
Last weekend in Mexico, Ford entered the Ultra4 El Rey de Las Bajas event and brought home two class wins, as well as two more podium finishes, making this race its best one yet!
Loren Healey, behind the wheel of his Unlimited Class Bronco 4400, scored the overall win with a time of 2 hours and 53 minutes. At the same event, Brad Lovell managed to win the Stock class in a Bronco 4600, completing two laps in 1 hour, 26 minutes.
Both drivers managed to finish the race without any mechanical problems and well ahead of second-place finishes. However, that's not all -- the other two Ford's drivers, Vaughn Gittin Jr and Jason Scherer -- finished sixth and seventh in the 4400 Unlimited class.
This further bolsters the success of the Bronco racing program, even before the first production examples have been delivered to customers.
The unlimited class is the most extreme category for those who don't know, and it includes completely custom-built vehicles with bodies that just barely resemble those of their production vehicle counterparts. The race rules allow for fully custom-built chassis, massive off-road tires, special suspensions, long-travel shocks, and other unique components.
Apart from all that custom hardware, Ford has also equipped the ULTRA4 4400 Unlimited Bronco with a unique race engine and transmission.
However, we feel that the Bronco 4600's Stock class win is even more impressive and pivotal, since the 4600 model is almost identical to what can be made out of the stock vehicle and it's something that you can actually put license plates on. Same drive train, suspension (more or less), chassis, and body, and the only modifications allowed are some suspension components, safety equipment, bigger tires, and removal of somebody panels to reduce the weight.
The Bronco 4600 Stock is equipped with heavy-duty front portal hubs, new control arms, and a modified steering rack with its own cooling system. There are also tougher Dana electronic locker differentials, aftermarket half shafts, and hubs, as well as a winch in the front, just in case the 4600 needs to extricate itself from trouble. While the roll-cage looks ordinary, Ford proudly announced that it's the first off-road roll-cageto be approved by the FIA.
Ford used a standard production two-door chassis (with Sasquatch package) and a 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost engine putting out 310 hp.
It's exciting to see a brand new Bronco frame put to the test, since it features new chassis architecture and is made of brand-new Gen 3 steel. Called Fortiform 980 GI and produced by ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steel manufacturer, this innovative material is known for being much more robust than regular steel and ia capable of being stretched into 35% thinner panels, with no loss to structural rigidity or strength. This material is used for creating the chassis, floor panels, and other structural parts of the 2021 Bronco.