Alan Oldfield – DETROIT (WKBN) – Ford used the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week to announce the coming return of two nameplates, both of which were one-time hot sellers for the company.
The mid-size Ford Ranger pickup is returning in 2019 and the mid-size SUV Bronco, a year later.
Ford produced the Bronco from 1966 to 1996. The Ranger was sold in North America from the 1983 model year through 2011.
Both vehicles will be built at Ford's assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan.
Photos: 2017 Detroit Auto Show
The Bronco will be sold around the world, while the Ranger will be a North American product.
"We've heard our customers loud and clear," said Joe Hinrichs, Ford's president of The America's. "They want a new generation of vehicles that are incredibly capable, yet fun to drive. Ranger is for truck buyers who want an affordable, functional, rugged and maneuverable pickup that's ‘Built Ford Tough.' Bronco will be a no-compromise midsize 4×4 utility for thrill seekers who want to venture way beyond the city."
Ford's decision to re-enter the mid-size pickup fray was no doubt encouraged by the success GM has enjoyed with the return of its midsize GMC Canyon and Chevrolet Colorado pickups, which are hot sellers for General Motors.
The Bronco began as Ford's answer to the Jeep CJ and International Harvester Scout – a multi-purpose vehicle before "SUV" became fashionable.
The Bronco, of course, became known for the infamous slow-speed chase on the freeways of Los Angeles on June 17, 1994. That's when the Los Angeles Police Department chased a white Bronco containing OJ Simpson, who was wanted for suspicion of murdering his wife. The whole country watched on network TV as the white Bronco, with Simpson as a passenger, captivated the nation.