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Ford’s big plans for the Bronco brand

Ford’s resurrected Bronco looks ready to take on the Jeep Wrangler, and ride the sport utility vehicle boom.

The automaker said July 30 it already has more than 150,000 reservations for the SUV, which debuted just weeks earlier on July 13. It  has clearly taken great care to study its market and include features and capabilities it thinks customers want but cannot find on current models. 

Industry watchers and reviewers have been impressed by the Bronco, especially with touches such as mechanisms that allow owners to more easily remove doors and the roof — something many Wrangler owners do on their own vehicles. 

However, auto industry analysts wonder how many Broncos Ford will actually sell, especially after the first and second year. 

Ford executives have said it could sell hundreds of thousands of Broncos a year, which would make it one of the top-selling Ford models in America. For comparison, the Jeep Wrangler — the Fiat Chrysler brand the Bronco is competing with — sold around 228,000 units in 2019. 

The automaker said reservations for 7,000 limited First Edition Broncos filled up by late July. That was after the company doubled production on the First Edition from an initial quantity of 3,500 units. 

But Ford is also releasing the vehicle during a global pandemic, which is already hurting the U.S. economy and depressing car sales. That could make for a rough product rollout and a challenging market.

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