Betcha ain’t gonna see another one of these anytime soon! That’s right, it’s a pretty rare five-speed manual 1991 Bronco that we found going up for auction at the Mecum Auctions event in Kissimmee, Florida, taking place January 6-16, 2022.
Nowadays pretty much everybody and their freeloading cousin are lazy as hell, but back in the early 1990s people were more inclined to do things for themselves. If you needed directions, you stopped and asked, or at least bought a paper map ’cause there was no app on your phone. And speaking of phones, if you wanted to make a call from the road you found a gas station, you pulled over, got out of your vehicle, and deposited 10 cents into the disease-ridden public telephone. But although nowadays we’re used to letting machines do most of our thinking and heavy lifting, even back in 1991 most people were content to let an automatic transmission shift gears for them. That’s why the listing for this 1991 Ford Bronco with just a tick over 57,000 original miles got us so excited. You just don’t see many of these.
Related: MotorTrend+ is the exclusive streaming home for Mecum Auctions! Sign up for a free trial today to catch all the action, plus the best automotive shows anywhere!
Rare Blend of Power and SUV Performance
When Ford ditched a carburetor for EFI injection on the Mustang’s 200 hp 5.0-liter V-8 in 1986, it ushered in a new age of affordable factory performance. By 1987 the H.O. 5.0-liter in the Mustang was making 225 hp, which launched that vehicle into the contention as a legitimately fast, affordable factory car. In addition to the EFI injection system, a good dual exhaust system, roller camshaft, and free-flowing heads were keys to the Mustang’s power formula. These elements would make their way into other vehicles in Ford’s lineup, including the light truck series. Although the 1991 Bronco’s power rating was lower than the Mustang’s, ticking the dyno to the tune of 185 hp and 270 lb-ft of torque, it came with a broad, flat power curve that helped get the full-size SUV off the line and accelerating briskly, especially for its day.
The standard transmission in these vehicles was Ford’s five-speed ZF manual transmission, but truth be told, most of those transmissions that hit the road were housed in 4.9-liter inline-six or V-8 F-150 base-model pickup trucks. Most XLT or Lariat F-150 trim models got the automatic transmission, and as a pseudo-luxury SUV, almost all the Broncos had slushboxes.
Not Stock but not a Deal-Breaker
This particular Bronco is not stock, but for us the intrinsic value of the uncommon five-speed trumps that, not to mention the fact that this particular vehicle, with only 57,585 miles, is super clean. The power window and door lock switches look like they’ve hardly ever been touched, and the interior seating and carpet look factory-new. The TTB suspension is boosted with a 2-inch lift that clears the way for 285/70R18 Toyo tires on some rather goofy-looking aluminum wheels with what appears to our eye to be too shallow of a backspacing. The first thing we’d do is huck some period-correct 15-inch steel Ford wheels on this thing or maybe some nice 17-inch aftermarket aluminum performance wheels with a 3.5- or 4.0-inch backspacing.
It’s unusual to find an early 1990s interior that hasn’t been molested with an aftermarket radio system, or an underhood that’s as factory-fresh looking as this one. We’re curious to see what this beauty sells for. What’s your guess?
Be sure to tune in to the Mecum Auctions Kissimmee event on MotorTrend+ January 6-16 to see where the bidding on this one winds up.
Source: Read Full Article