A member on the Bronco6G forum noticed something a little funny recently: The 2022 Ford Bronco configurator no longer features the image of the base level Bronco, and the entry-level model is no longer selectable at all. We took a look for ourselves and found that, indeed, the base Broncos are gone and only the price and wording remains above a grayed-out “image missing” graphic. That same Bronco6G forum poster also mentions that a user’s local dealer explained their reasoning behind the move.
Is There A Replacement?
As it seems that Ford has removed the base Bronco from its configurator, we have yet to hear of any official new entry-level trim for the popular SUV. The post was made on January 11, 2022 and the last webpage crawl from the Internet Archive was back on November 19, 2021. We don’t know when this was changed and how long it’s actually been this way, though if you mess with the Ford website’s url to force it to show the 2021 Bronco configurator, the base Bronco tile appears normally and you can build one. It could be that ongoing supply chain issues (and hardtop problems) are impacting the base-level 2022-model-year Bronco, so Ford is putting the kibosh on ordering one (it wouldn’t be the first such limit or delay Ford has levied on Bronco intenders).
At the time of this writing we have yet to get official word from Ford on the reason the Base model is gone. Either way, the blanked-out base Bronco leaves the two-door Bronco Big Bend version as the new price leader—though for 2022 it starts at $35,280, a far cry from the $30,795 listed for the two-door base version.
A Dealer Rumor
However, the rumor mill is picking up where the base Bronco’s faint scent trails off. On that same forum post, a member mentions talking to their local dealer about the loss and what was coming. (Again, we have no official word from Ford to verify this and so it should be taken with a grain of salt.) The explanation is that dealers were having trouble with selling the base Bronco for a profit versus other trims and weren’t ordering as many.
We find that somewhat hard to believe, given the popularity of the Bronco and the stories of people who were willing to fork over cash for one—any Bronco at all, really. Ford does not release monthly sales figures nor do they break down trims in their quarterly figures, so the base Bronco’s fate at the hands of dealer ordering preferences or customer preferences are a mystery.
A First-Gen Call Back?
One interesting theory, on the other hand, was a mention of a “Heritage Edition” to replace the base model. It was described to a forum member as a standard Bronco with a white roof, calling back to the original, first generation Bronco. Given Ford’s history of playing up its historic models, we can’t say that isn’t too far fetched. Again, we must stress that we have reached out to Ford for confirmation on all of this—the loss of the base model and the introduction of a Heritage model—and, as of press time, Ford has not responded to our questions. So don’t rush to conclusions until we’re able to confirm from Ford any of it is true. If or when we do hear back, we’ll update this story.
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