It hasn't exactly been a secret: Ford is bringing back the Bronco.
We don't yet know what it'll look like when it's finally unveiled this spring, but it will have true off-road capability to compete head-on with the Jeep Wrangler. And it's become widely known that the design will pay tribute to the original Bronco that came out in 1966.
In the meantime, how about a vintage Bronco that's been fully refurbished to essentially be a brand-new vehicle? Gateway Bronco of St. Louis is doing just that.
"All original look and feel. But 0-60 in five seconds, Coyote (Ford modern 5.0 V8) engine, six-speed transmission, and bison leather. Comfortable, air conditioning, drive it anywhere," said Seth Burgett, founder and CEO of Gateway Bronco.
No, Gateway Bronco is not the only company doing this, but they say they're the only one licensed by Ford Motor Company to make old Broncos new again. Every part, down to the last nut and bolt, is either new or refurbished. Interiors are still stark, but with amenities the old ones never had.
So how does it drive? I got to take one on a brief drive on the winding roads of the Santa Monica Mountains. It feels like a mix of a vintage vehicle and a new one. That was the goal.
Each of Gateway's "new" Broncos are bespoke, built to customer order and take about a year. All the buyer has to do is select things like color, interior, and options. And send money. A lot of it. Pricey materials plus many hours of skilled labor equal price tags that are real jaw-droppers.
"The base model starts at $150,000, and has a three-year warranty. We've got a middle product at $250,000 with a five-year warranty. And our top-of-the-line modern-day warrior, with a five-year warranty starting at $300,000, and that includes just about everything including a Shelby supercharger on the Coyote engine," said Burgett.
Expensive, yes. But one thing's for sure, you'd have the only one on your block, if not in your ZIP code.
Or, just wait a while. Ford will eventually be selling new Broncos that might remind you of these old ones. But to many, they'll never be quite as cool as the originals.
Company making vintage Ford Broncos brand new again, for hefty price