Finally, 2021 Bronco Regular Production Gets A Start Date!
Ever since the car paparazzi noticed boxy test mules on the roads around Dearborn, automotive insiders have reported about the return of the legendary Bronco nameplate and Ford has teased us with the photos, avid car enthusiasts have been desperate to know more.
Fast forward a couple of years, and we now know pretty much everything there is to know about Ford’s hottest premiere in years – the 2021 Bronco. The engine choices, trim levels, prices, colors and details on a whole lot of optional equipment have been widely publicized -- customers even have access to the owner’s information booklet (click HERE).
However, we still don’t know one crucial thing – just when production will start.
So far, Ford has experienced several unexpected setbacks stemming from the global pandemic, problems with its supplier of Bronco hard tops and, most recently, a shortage of computer chips, all of which pushed the production date further.
However, just a couple days ago, an industry insider publicly released information about the definitive start of production, which should happen in less than a month from now. On March 29th, to be precise.
But don't expect that new 2021 Broncos will start flying from the Ford’s assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan on Monday morning in late March, since there's a lot more to be done before the first Broncos reach their eager new owners.
First of all, Ford had already started production of the 2021 Bronco, since the manufacturer made exactly 99 Broncos in January. However, these models are not considered regular production vehicles and will not be offered for sale. Instead, these early Broncos will be used solely for testing, promotional and display purposes and will be crushed once full-scale production is under way.
Remember all those 2021 Bronco photos in the wild you've seen all over the internet? Those cars are from this batch of pre-production examples.
Throughout March, Ford’s Wayne plant will be very busy with employee training and some down time in order to fully prepare for “Phase 1 Mass Production”. To be precise, there are some Broncos in production at this very moment, but these cars will probably be press vehicles delivered to various magazines and car journalists during Spring in order to be thoroughly tested and reported on via articles and videos published in Jun and July to correspond with first deliveries.
You might well conclude that you'll be getting your 2021 Bronco in early April -- immediately after the start of production-- but this will not be the case. When the first regular-production models start rolling off the assembly lines, Ford’s production inspectors will spend days, if not weeks, carefully checking every bit of the production process and the fit and finish of the completed vehicles and will be meticulously searching for potential problems.
In the recent past, Ford has had problems with vehicles they've rushed into production, so they'll likely be of the opinion that it's far better to have their customers wait a few more weeks for their cars than to set themselves up for an expensive and embarrassing recall later. Since the 2021 Bronco represents an extremely high profile launch, Ford can't take any chances.
That's why the public ceremony for the Bronco Job 1 is scheduled for May -- after the company is convinced that any potential problems have been addressed and their assembly lines are fully operational.
If everything goes as planned -- and we really hope it will -- Ford will stockpile the brand-new Broncos, waiting for the OKTB confirmation to be issued. This acronym stands for “OK to Buy” and it's an internal permit confirming that the model can be delivered to dealers and then sold to customers. This leads us to expected delivery dates in June or July.
The fact that Ford has received a staggering 230,000 reservations for both the 2021 Bronco and Bronco Sport, underscores just how many people are eager to get their hands on Ford’s brand new SUV.
Even though it was originally planned for both Bronco models to debut at the same time, it just wasn’t to be, due to well-known problems. However, we really hope that Ford will leave all of that behind and that 2021 Bronco production will start up without any further hiccups.
Yeah, we can't wait for summer, either.