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  • Drew Dowdell
    Drew Dowdell

    Mazda Re-Engineers the Mazda 6 mostly beneath the skin

      The visual updates are evolutionary, but it is heavy on hardware improvements


    At the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show today Mazda fully unveiled the re-engineered Mazda 6 sedan.  Visually, the Mazda 6 is quite familiar to the current model, but Mazda was hard at work under the skin.

    The biggest news of course is the addition of the 2.5 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine sourced originally from the Mazda CX-9.  This engine, new to the 6, produces 310 lb-ft of torque at 2,000 rpm and 250 horsepower when running 93 Octane fuel.  Horsepower is reduced to 227 on regular.   The base naturally aspirated 2.5 liter 4-cylinder has cylinder deactivation where the two outside cylinders shut down when the vehicle is operated at a steady speed between 25 mph and 50 mph.

    The Mazda 6-speed automatic and 6-speed manual will carry over, however only the base engine will be available with the manual transmission.

    The chassis has been refined, stiffened, and solidified in a number of areas to improve handling response and NVH. The steering rack is now solid mounted to the chassis for more direct steering control. 

    The interior is all new with only the steering wheel and a few trim pieces carrying over from the previous car.  The result is a much more premium feeling space reflecting Mazda's march upscale. 

    The re-engineered Mazda 6 goes on sale Spring 2018

    Photos: Mazda USA

    Press Release on Page 2


    Cosmo. Luce. Millenia. CX-9 Signature. Mazda6. These are but a small sample of the Mazda vehicles from the past 50 years that have embodied “Mazda Premium,” a set of guiding principles that complements the automaker’s human-centric design and engineering. Mazda uses these principles to build cars and crossover SUVs that compete in a class above, at a price that is readily affordable, offering a depth of engagement with its owner that satisfies at every touch point. With vehicles like these, it is Mazda’s goal to enrich people’s lives through a car ownership experience that celebrates driving, and to become a brand with which customers feel a strong emotional connection. The re-engineered Mazda6 certainly delivers all of the above, elevating Mazda6 from its traditional competitive set into a higher class, with unparalleled craftsmanship, design and technologies for the driver who savors every moment behind the wheel. Yet, Mazda6 is also serene, thoroughly reworked underneath its sheet metal to deliver a refined experience befitting of a far more expensive car. A Signature Path Forward The 2016 Mazda CX-9 three-row crossover SUV was a remarkable step for Mazda. It once again elevated Mazda, showing if Mazda built an SUV with superior driving dynamics, class-above refinement, an abundance of amenities, technology and a strong engine, customers would come. After more than a year since going on sale, approximately 55 percent of all Mazda CX-9 crossover SUVs sold in the U.S. have been either high-level Grand Touring models or top-trim Signature models—an unusually high number. The Signature trim level has been well received, selling more than twice as well as expected, and attracting customers who are trading up from traditional luxury brands. It was natural, then, that Mazda would follow this plan with its flagship sedan. Mazda6 has received improvements every year it has been on sale. Updates for the previous model year added more sound insulation throughout its cabin and available Nappa leather interior appointments. Mazda6 also received standard G-Vectoring Control, a Mazda-exclusive technology that makes steering response more direct and linear by using a minute reduction of engine torque at turn-in to put extra weight on the front tires. But simply adding Nappa leather and some new technologies does not a Signature model make. Thus, Mazda6’s chassis has also been thoroughly revised to provide a more supple ride, greater agility and dramatically improved NVH. Mazda6’s Signature interior features authentic materials—brown Nappa leather whose color is inspired by the aged wood in ancient Japanese temples; UltraSuede® NU that is adorned with a subtle gold tint, using a similar technique to that which is used to make ornate kimonos; and Sen wood accents, a type of wood often used in taiko drums and Japanese furniture. Perhaps the greatest upgrade of Mazda6 Signature is its source of motivation. Mazda’s award-winning, SKYACTIV-G 2.5T gasoline turbo engine returns for its second application. The SKYACTIV-G 2.5T is an engine renowned for its nearly instantaneous, ample torque, courtesy of its Dynamic Pressure Turbo, which accelerates exhaust gasses through a tiny inlet to quickly spool up its turbocharger at low RPM before opening a larger secondary passage to use throughout the engine’s operational range. The engine produces torque on par with a 4.0-liter V-8 engine. Mazda6 was already a class favorite among discerning drivers. These latest upgrades will launch Mazda6 above the mainstream sedan fray, changing the idea of what an affordable midsize sedan can and should be. ‘Mature Elegance’: A Design Vision Mazda’s striking VISION COUPE concept that debuted at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show portended a revitalized focus on elegance. Mazda6 carries a similar theme, called “Mature Elegance,” creating an added level of sophistication to Mazda’s KODO—Soul of Motion design language that complements its aspirational ambitions. Up front is Mazda6’s new grille, which accentuates a look of depth, with a strong framework, low center of gravity and wide stance. Its standard LED headlights integrate fog lamps and carry a crisp, wide lighting signature. Painted surfaces extend lower on the body, and new 17- and 19-inch wheel designs complement the upgraded appearance. Finally, Soul Red Crystal paint makes its debut on Mazda’s sedan, joining Machine Gray Metallic and a full palette of available paint colors. Inside, the interior is all-new, with only the steering wheel and small trim pieces carried over from its predecessor. Most noticeable is its horizontally stretched dashboard that accentuates Mazda6’s width and belies a sense of subtle sophistication. On Mazda6 Signature models, Sen wood, Nappa leather and UltraSuede® NU adorn the doors, seats and dashboard, providing an atmosphere that can coddle on Rodeo Drive just as easily as it can enliven spirited drives on Mulholland. Technology Aplenty Lest one thinks the new Mazda6 hasn’t received the technology to match its upscale interior, there’s more in store. Mazda6’s front seats have been fully redesigned. They are wider, with high-density, vibration-absorbing urethane foam that creates a firm, supportive seating surface. Yet, they’re supple enough to keep the driver and passengers comfortable for long trips. Introducing next-generation seat materials and concepts, first seen at August 2017’s Mazda Frankfurt Technology Forum, Mazda6’s seats are designed to help keep front passengers’ spines in the natural S-shape humans use when standing. Available ventilated front seats in Mazda6 are a first for the brand, and wick away warm air from the front passenger and driver’s backs to keep them cool. Rear seats have also been redesigned with highdensity urethane foam, enabling greater comfort. In addition to the seats, new technology comes by way of available features:  360⁰ View Monitor  A reconfigurable 7.0-inch TFT gauge display in higher-trim models  A new 8.0-inch MAZDA CONNECT infotainment display with sharper color contrast  Available full-speed Mazda Radar Cruise Control with Stop & Go  Windshield wiper de-icer  Windshield-projected Active Driving Display head-up unit Engines to Suit Customers’ Tastes Mazda6 offers two powertrain options in the U.S., starting with the torquey, fuel-efficient SKYACTIV-G 2.5 naturally aspirated engine. Mazda6’s 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine comes with a host of upgrades to reduce internal friction and improve efficiency across all RPM, and it adds a greater level of refinement. A new technology that is unique to Mazda in North America is cylinder deactivation in a four-cylinder engine. The outside two cylinders can shut down when the vehicle is operated at steady speeds between 25 and 50 mph, but all four cylinders work instantaneously when needed for maximum performance. A centrifugal pendulum has been adopted in the torque converter of the six-speed SKYACTIV-DRIVE automatic transmission, counterbalancing any vibration that might otherwise be felt when running on two cylinders. The result is an imperceptible switchover between two- and fourcylinder modes, yet with very tangible real-world efficiency benefits. Higher-grade models will also be available with Mazda’s award-winning turbocharged SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine. First available in the current-generation Mazda CX-9 midsize crossover SUV, the SKYACTIV-G 2.5T is a technological tour de force that produces 310 lb-ft of torque from just 2,000 RPM and 250 horsepower on 93-octane fuel (227 horsepower with 87-octane gasoline). Mazda’s industry-first Dynamic Pressure Turbo builds boost nearly instantaneously by using a small inlet port to force air into its turbocharger, akin to how water velocity increases when one holds his or her thumb over a hose. From there, a secondary valve can open up at higher RPM for increased airflow and maximum horsepower. A pulse-scavenging 4-3-1 manifold that prevents exhaust backpressure and helps the engine breathe freely. Cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) is used to reduce combustion temperatures, preventing knocking and therefore reducing the need for fuel-enrichment (when extra fuel is dumped into the cylinders as a means to cool the engine). Many times when turbocharged engines fail to achieve EPA-estimated fuel efficiency numbers in the real world, it is because laboratory tests don’t replicate the higher-load driving styles that necessitate fuel-enrichment. In too many instances, turbocharged engines are mated to continuously variable automatic transmissions (CVT), operating in a narrow band of efficiency, sacrificing a connectedness between driver and car—a valued characteristic of all Mazda vehicles called Jinba Ittai. Mazda’s six-speed SKYACTIV-DRIVE automatic transmission, paired as standard to the SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine, keeps its torque converter locked through most of its operation, giving a more connected sense of controllability than many other automatic transmissions. Both engines complement Mazda6, with the naturally aspirated engine serving as an all-around efficient, responsive powertrain and its turbocharged sibling amplifying the driving performance for which Mazdas are known. Finally, as a champion of the manual transmission, Mazda6 will continue to offer the SKYACTIV-MT, paired with the SKYACTIV-G 2.5 engine. But What’s an Engine without a Chassis? In this latest round of thoughtful improvements, engineers have revisited every aspect of Mazda6’s chassis, with its suspension offering a smoother, more linear ride quality and greater NVH refinement similar to the ultra-quiet CX-9. Its steering rack is now rigid-mounted to the chassis, offering greater steering response and feel, and its SKYACTIV-CHASSIS has been stiffened in complement with the revised suspension to offer both a smoother ride and to improve outright dynamic performance. Enabling this more comfortable ride without compromising the Mazda6’s handling, the suspension geometry has been revised, with roll-steer changes that promote more neutral handling. Additionally, body reinforcements, thicker sheet metal in the rear wheel-wells, reinforced chassis bracing and even thicker suspension trailing link mounts help improve interior conversation sound quality, putting Mazda6 into rarified air when it comes to quietness, refinement and capabilities. In Pursuit of Premium In pursuit of premium, an engine isn’t enough. A chassis isn’t enough. An elegant interior and worldrenowned design aren’t enough. Refinement and technology aren’t enough. But together, they complete what Mazda expects to be yet another step to elevate the brand beyond the realm of mainstream vehicles, offering a “Mazda Premium” experience that will delight customers. As with its predecessor, the new Mazda6 will land among the world’s best cars, for those who love to drive. But it will aim higher, moving Mazda’s consideration with customers to a new, class-above place, because Mazda never stops challenging. The re-engineered, refined Mazda6 is expected to go on sale in spring 2018.

    Edited by Drew Dowdell



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    Considering that I cannot fit in my sister's 5 year old Mazda 6, I have to assume I will not be able to fit into this one either. Like the looks of the black dash, hate the white, talk about a dirt magnet. It should continue to sell for them, how well is another question considering that peeps are moving to CUVs.

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    The Mazda6 is tight.  It had a nice interior.  They changed it now again, and it still looks nice, but it doesn't look different.

    There wasn't much of a unique element to the MAzda6 that drove showroom traffic but the new engine really ups the game and will allow some attention on this car now instead of fading into the weeds like where it was headed.

     

    smart move Mazda.

    Edited by regfootball

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    Finally it gets the turbo 2.5, sadly it won't offer a manual like the Accord Sport with it's 2.0 turbo.  Still enough to make the future list thouh.

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    On 11/29/2017 at 6:58 PM, Stew said:

    Finally it gets the turbo 2.5, sadly it won't offer a manual like the Accord Sport with it's 2.0 turbo.  Still enough to make the future list thouh.

    with high grade gas, make the same power(~1%) but mazda has like ~15% more torques. the 6 is slightly lighter for the '17 6 to the '18 accord.
    The tuning and transmission will be the deciding factors for FAST!

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    • Upvote 1

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      The Mazda3 2.5S with Select Package is a new offering for the hatchback and remains available for the sedan. Along with available i-Activ all-wheel drive, this package adds more conveniences such as Blind Spot Monitoring with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Mazda Advanced Keyless Entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather steering wheel and shift knob, black leatherette seats, rear armrest with cup holders and door mirror turn signals. The Select Package also upgrades to 18-inch gray aluminum alloy wheels.
      Opening to more potentials, the Mazda3 2.5S with Preferred Package now adds a power moonroof. The Preferred Package consists of heated front seats, gloss black front grille, door mirrors with memory positioning and eight-way power driver seats with power lumbar support and seat memory. As part of this package, the interior and leatherette seats are available in either black or greige.
      Elevating to the Mazda3 2.5S with Premium Package brings the highest qualities to the hatchback and sedan. New for 2021, this package is enhanced with navigation, Bose® 12-speaker premium audio with aluminum speaker grilles, SiriusXM® that includes a three-month trial subscription and a shark fin antenna. Also included in this package is Active Driving Display, Adaptive Front-lighting System and paddle shifters. Leather seats complement the quality of the interior. Along with available black interior, the white interior option is exclusive to the sedan with the red interior option reserved for the hatchback. For the exterior, this package is equipped with 18-inch black finish aluminum alloy wheels and LED signature illumination headlights and taillights. Limited to the Premium package hatchback FWD, Mazda will continue to offer its Skyactiv-MT six-speed manual transmission.
      2021 Mazda3 pricing will be announced on a later date.
    • By William Maley
      2021 is going to be a very interesting year for the Mazda3 as two more engines become available.
      According to separate reports from Jalopnik and Hagerty, Mazda will be dropping in the turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder found in the 6, CX-5, and CX-9. The engine produces 227 horsepower on regular or 250 on premium. Like other Mazda models with this engine, the 3 will have it paired only with a six-speed automatic. Both reports say the engine will have AWD as standard. According to Hagerty's source, the engine will be available on a new trim called Premium Plus - likely taking the top spot in the 3's trim lineup. The source also confirmed this engine will not mean the return of the Mazdaspeed name for a hot variant. 
      The other engine is a 2.0L four-cylinder that Jalopnik reports is only for the sedan. Hagerty believes this engine is the SkyActiv-G used in the previous-generation 3, not the SkyActiv-X with its compression-ignition system.
      Not surprisingly, Mazda said they "“have not announced any details for the 2021 Mazda3," when asked about this.
      Source: Hagerty, Jalopnik

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      2021 is going to be a very interesting year for the Mazda3 as two more engines become available.
      According to separate reports from Jalopnik and Hagerty, Mazda will be dropping in the turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder found in the 6, CX-5, and CX-9. The engine produces 227 horsepower on regular or 250 on premium. Like other Mazda models with this engine, the 3 will have it paired only with a six-speed automatic. Both reports say the engine will have AWD as standard. According to Hagerty's source, the engine will be available on a new trim called Premium Plus - likely taking the top spot in the 3's trim lineup. The source also confirmed this engine will not mean the return of the Mazdaspeed name for a hot variant. 
      The other engine is a 2.0L four-cylinder that Jalopnik reports is only for the sedan. Hagerty believes this engine is the SkyActiv-G used in the previous-generation 3, not the SkyActiv-X with its compression-ignition system.
      Not surprisingly, Mazda said they "“have not announced any details for the 2021 Mazda3," when asked about this.
      Source: Hagerty, Jalopnik
  • Posts

    • Does look very well thought out. Assumedly the time & money previously going to non-lamented product like a -say- Focus, went into this. Good move. Not my type of vehicle, but so far looks to be extremely competitive.
    • It looks like a home run on paper. Let's see how it plays out. 
    • Looks cool I can't wait till magazines will do a full comparison with Wrangler.  Hopefully with Defender too.
    • The 2021 Ford Bronco shows how serious the automaker is to creating a real threat to the Jeep Wrangler. With two and four-door versions, seven different trims, a number of off-road features, and other goodies, there is a lot to digest. So let us dive in. It Certainly Looks the Part Ford's designers leaned heavily on the first-generation (1963-1977) Bronco as inspiration for the new model. The boxy profile is here, as is the "BRONCO" front grille. Unlike Broncos of the past, Ford is offering two and four-door versions. Before you ask, the doors are removable. While being slightly heavier than the Wrangler, the Bronco's doors are frameless that not only makes them more compact to store, but also makes it feel more like a convertible. If you're wondering about the side-view mirrors, Ford moved them from the doors to the front cowl. Which brings us to the Bronco's tops. The two-door version will only come with a hardtop, while the four-door comes with both a soft and hardtop. Ford claims that removing the top on the Bronco will be easier and quicker than on the Wrangler, we can't wait to see that claim be put to the test. One item that the Bronco doesn't have is the ability for the front windshield to fold down like on the Wrangler. Roadshow asked Ford officials and this is what they wrote, Moving inside, the Bronco leans more on being purposeful and plain. There are some clever touches such as grab handles molded into the dash, a set of dedicated buttons on top of the dash for various off-road features, and built-in drains in the floor to wash out the interior. Ford's latest infotainment system, SYNC 4 will come standard in the Bronco - either in 8 or 12-inch touchscreen.  Turbo Power! Ford is going all-in on turbocharged power for the new Bronco. The base engine is the 2.3 EcoBoost four-cylinder packing 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. This will come standard with a seven-speed manual. Before you start thinking this is similar to what you'll find in a last-generation Chevrolet Corvette or Porsche 911, the seventh-gear acts a crawler gear. With the upgraded 4x4 system, it can achieve a 95:1 crawl ratio for peak climbing prowess. A ten-speed automatic is optional. Next step up is the 2.7L EcoBoost with 310 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. This is paired solely with the ten-speed automatic. Both engines have four-wheel drive as standard - in this case a part-time system with a two-speed, shift-on-the-fly electronic transfer case. Optional is a full-time system with a 4-Auto setting. GOAT Doesn't Mean "Greatest of All Time" for Bronco If you checked our Bronco Sport story from last night, you may have seen something called GOAT. This in Bronco terms means "Goes Over Any Type of Terrain" - i.e. seven different drive modes. Those modes are, Normal Eco Sport Slippery Sand Baja Mud/Ruts Rock Crawl There is also hill-descent control and Trail Control, the latter being an off-road cruise control system. How About that Suspension? Up front, the Bronco utilizes a independent suspension setup with twin-A control arms and coilovers. The back utilizes a live axle with trailing links and coil-over springs. On certain versions, a electro-hydraulically actuated sway bar can be disconnected while under load. It will automatically reconnect at speeds above 20 mph. If you want a slightly deeper dive into the Bronco's suspension, I highly recommend Dan Edmunds' piece on Autoblog. How Much and When I Can Get One? First the bad news, the 2021 Ford Bronco will not be available at dealers until next spring. This might be a good thing considering Ford's previous launches haven't gone over so well (see Explorer). As for pricing, the base two-door will begin at $29,995. The four-door kicks off at $34,695. Prices include a $1,495 destination charge. The rest of the lineup is as followed (two-door, four-door), Big Bend: $34,880, $37,375 Black Diamond: $37,545, $40,040 Outer Banks: $40,450, $42,945 Badlands: $43,590, $46,085 Wildtrak: $50,370, $52,865 First Edition: $60,800, $64,995 (Author's Note: As of this morning, Ford has announced that all First Editions of the Bronco have sold out.) Car and Driver has a good piece breaking down each trim and what comes equipped. As we mentioned in our Bronco Sport story, you can put a reservation on a 2021 Bronco with a $100 deposit. Hopefully, Ford's servers are up to the task as they were struggling last night. Source: Ford Press Release is on Page 2 ALL-NEW 2021 BRONCO TWO-DOOR AND FIRST-EVER FOUR-DOOR MODELS: BUILT WILD SUVS WITH THRILLING 4X4 CAPABILITY, READY FOR FUN Built Wild™: Ford Bronco returns as the flagship of a new all-4x4 family of rugged SUVs, with a classic two-door and a first-ever four-door; both are engineered with Built Wild Extreme Durability Testing, Capability and Innovative Design for segment-leading 4x4 capability, long-term off-road performance and dependability Thrilling: Bronco features powerful EcoBoost® engines with segment-exclusive 7-speed manual transmission and available 35-inch tires; Bronco excels with available best-in-class 94.75:1 crawl ratio, ground clearance, suspension travel and water fording capabilities, plus breakover and departure angles Ready for fun: Bronco two-door and four-door models can get you to the trails fast with quick-release stowable roof panels and doors on select versions; available cutting-edge off-road drive technologies and segment-exclusive digital trail mapping allow owners to easily plan, record and share their experiences via an all-in-one app Infinitely customizable: Bronco launches with more than 200 factory-backed aftermarket accessories for more capability, personalization and style, and with a base MSRP of $29,995; 2021 Bronco two- and four-door SUVs can be reserved at ford.com starting today for $100 DEARBORN, Mich., July 13, 2020 – Ford today unveils the 2021 Bronco – including a classic two-door and first-ever four-door – the flagship of an all-new family of rugged off-road vehicles. The all-4x4 Bronco brand is Built Wild™ and ready to deliver thrilling experiences with its heritage-inspired style, engineering and smart off-road technology, plus innovative features to help outdoor enthusiasts create adventures in the most remote corners of the world. “We created the Bronco family to elevate every aspect of off-road adventure and equipped them with class-leading chassis hardware and exclusive technologies to raise the bar in the rugged 4x4 segment and take people further into the wild,” said Jim Farley, Ford chief operating officer. “They’re built with the toughness of an F-Series truck and performance spirit of Mustang – and come wrapped in one of the most stunning and functional off-road designs that’s true to the original Bronco design DNA.” The all-new Bronco re-enters the scene with an all-4x4 lineup with production beginning in early 2021 and first models arriving in Ford dealerships next spring. Bronco owners can choose from an extensive lineup of more than 200 factory-backed accessories for maximum personalization, enabling dealers to provide outfitting-on-demand for each customer’s individual adventure needs. Built Wild 4x4 confidence Just like the first-generation Bronco, nicknamed G.O.A.T., the mission of the all-new 2021 Bronco is to deliver maximum 4x4 go-anywhere, anytime capability and confidence. Bronco incorporates off-road mapping and drive technologies to give novice adventurers as much fun as hard-core off-road experts, while its Built Wild durability makes for lasting performance in the harshest of conditions for generations to come. “Bronco’s advanced four-wheel-drive technology is at the core of its off-road capabilities, and at the heart of it all is Bronco’s exclusive Terrain Management System™ with G.O.A.T. Modes™ that is designed to help drivers better navigate any type of terrain,” said Mark Grueber, Bronco consumer marketing manager. Up to seven driver-selectable modes are offered including Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand, with Baja, Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl for off-road driving. Two 4x4 systems are offered on all Bronco models, a base setup and advanced 4x4. The base system utilizes a two-speed electronic shift-on-the-fly transfer case, while the optional advanced system features a two-speed electromechanical transfer case that adds an auto mode for on-demand engagement to select between 2H and 4H. Power is distributed to a Dana™ 44 AdvanTEK® solid rear axle and Dana AdvanTEK independent front differential unit – both with available Spicer® Performa-TraK™ electronic locking differentials for improved traction over rough terrain. Available segment-first Trail Toolbox gives Bronco owners a suite of exclusive technologies to elevate their off-road experience. This includes Trail Control™ – cruise control for low-speed trail driving, while Trail Turn Assist tightens off-road turning radiuses through torque vectoring, and the innovative Trail One-Pedal Drive acceleration/braking control makes for more precise and confident slow-mode rock crawling. Segment-leading levels of off-road capability are possible thanks to Bronco’s available best-in-class 11.6-inch ground clearance, maximum 29-degree breakover angle and 37.2-degree departure angle, plus best-in-class water fording capability of up to 33.5 inches. Off-road capability is further reinforced by exposed tow hooks in the front and rear and available heavy-duty modular steel bumpers with integrated Ford Performance accessory winch mount. Bronco’s strategically placed steel shields protect critical hardware. Higher-capability models get an available front bash plate, plus shields for the engine, transmission, transfer case and fuel tank. For those taking on the roughest rocky terrain, Bronco’s available side rock rails are strong enough to support the weight of each side of the vehicle. “Bronco two- and four-door models leverage the company’s Built Ford Tough durability and performance testing and take it even further off-road with Built Wild Extreme Durability Testing in the harshest possible environments, including the brutal trails of the King of the Hammers off-road competition,” said Dave Pericak, director, Ford enterprise product line management, Icons. Thrilling performance borne of Bronco DNA Thanks to Bronco’s legendary Baja racing DNA, each model brings forth a thrilling off-road experience and delivers it with modern, heritage-inspired style. It all began in a Ford design studio with a life-size digital scan of a first-generation model that served to influence the proportions and design of the all-new Bronco for maximum off-road capability and performance. “Similar to the first-generation model, Bronco’s square proportions, short overhangs and wide stance are optimized for off-road adventure,” said Paul Wraith, Bronco chief designer. “The side profile features a flat, no-nonsense surface with clear-cut edges and robustly flared fenders. Large, open wheel wells are a modular design with a quick-release attachment for simple customization. All-new Bronco architecture for two- and four-door models is based on a fully boxed, high-strength steel chassis that delivers available best-in-class suspension travel – 17 percent more both front and rear over the closest competitor to thrive in rugged environments. To deliver thrilling high-speed off-roading and overall driving performance, every Bronco comes with an independent front suspension for improved control, confidence and comfort. At the rear, a rugged solid axle design featuring coil springs with five locating links delivers both strength and off-road control. Long-travel position-sensitive Bilstein® dampers with end-stop control valves at every corner are available for added off-road durability and reduced harshness. An available segment-exclusive semi-active hydraulic stabilizer bar disconnect design provides maximum articulation and increased ramp angle index for off-camber terrain. This innovative system bests competitors by disconnecting during articulation; it can reconnect under all conditions to improve steering and stability at higher speeds. Segment-first 35-inch off-road tires direct from the factory are available on every trim level of two- and four-door Bronco, while available segment-first beadlock-capable wheels allow customers to elevate off-road capability, regardless of price point.  “Race-bred EcoBoost® engines and our segment-first 7-speed manual and available 10-speed automatic transmissions give the all-new Bronco the optimal combination of power, torque and gear ranges to perform in a wide variety of terrains and uses,” said Pericak. Best-in-class projected gasoline-powered horsepower and torque is available with the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine, which is projected to produce 310 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque, while the 2.3-liter EcoBoost is targeted to deliver best-in-class four-cylinder torque of 310 lb.-ft. with an expected 270 horsepower. For maximum low-speed rock-climbing capability, a segment-first 7-speed (6+1) manual transmission paired with the available advanced 4x4 system with automatic on-demand engagement generates a class-leading available crawler-gear ratio of 94.75:1. An available segment-first SelectShift® 10-speed automatic transmission makes for easier driving on- and off-road, while offering a maximum 67.8:1 crawl ratio with the available advanced 4x4 transfer case. Ready to head effortlessly into the wild Both Bronco two- and four-door models make the open-air experience quick, easy and fun. Two-door models come with a standard three-section roof system – left and right front sections and a rear section – molded-in color and an available premium painted modular top with four sections that adds a removable panel over the rear seats and cargo area. Four-door models have four removable roof sections – left and right front panels, a full-width center panel and a rear section. Roof panels on all models can be removed by one person by unlocking the latches from the interior. First-row panels stow away onboard on two-door models. All modular hardtops have rear quarter windows that are removable in three easy steps – snap, push and lift away in a fraction of the time it takes for competitors – without removing the roof panels. By locating the sportbar behind the second row, both Bronco two- and four-door models offer the largest overall open-top view in its class to take in the sunshine or to gaze at the stars at night. A cloth soft top, standard on four-door models, provides easy access to the open air and a unique tilt-up function for quick access to the rear cargo area. For customers who don’t want to choose between a soft or hardtop, the four-door model can be optioned with both. Every Bronco comes with class-exclusive frameless doors that make them easier to remove than what competitors offer. On four-door Bronco models, all four doors can be stored onboard with protective door bags. Exclusive cowl-mounted mirrors maintain sideview visibility when the doors are removed. Trail sights on the front fenders also serve as tie-downs, reminiscent of the first-generation Bronco, have a 150-pound capacity for securing longer items like canoes. High-tech interior designed for the outdoors Inside, all Bronco models are purpose-built and ready for action. The instrument panel is inspired by the first-generation model, with gauges and controls clearly visible and intuitive. Colors and materials are inspired by natural palettes and outdoor gear. With off-road functionality paramount, materials are tough and rugged. A multifunction color LCD instrument panel is front and center with the transmission shifter/selector and G.O.A.T. Modes controller in the center console. Available grab handles are integrated into the modular instrument panel and center console, while available MOLLE hooks are mounted in the seatbacks. Attachment points are built into the instrument panel to mount a bring-your-own-device rack, with 12-volt power connections to easily mount cameras, navigation units, phones or other devices. Further setting Bronco ahead of the off-road competition is an available segment-exclusive 12-inch SYNC® 4 system with over-the-air updates and seamless integration to the FordPass Performance app with off-road navigation – a Bronco class-exclusive feature that allows owners to easily plan, navigate and share their off-road adventures. The SYNC system also displays the available 360-degree camera system with class-exclusive off-road spotter views to provide additional visibility in technical pursuits such as rock crawling. Bronco’s advanced topographic trail maps and more than 1,000 curated trail maps are powered by class-exclusive trail content from NeoTreks’ AccuTerra® Maps, Trails Offroad trail guides and FunTreks trail guides. “The trail mapping system available on Bronco is truly a game-changer in the off-road community,” said Grueber. “It works online or off on either of the navigation-capable 8- or 12-inch SYNC systems, allowing users to select one of hundreds of available curated trail maps to map out and then track, capture and share their adventures with others.”   To make post-adventure cleanups simple, fast and painless, select Bronco models come with washable rubberized floors with integrated drains and marine-grade vinyl seating surfaces that resist mildew. Instrument panel surfaces are wipeable, with seamless silicone rubber on the dash-mounted hero switches, while rubber touchpoints protect against dirt and water. Six available upfitter switches mounted overhead are silicone-sealed to protect against the elements and to make customization easy, with pre-wired leads to key accessory points. A modern high-strength steel roll cage with integrated side curtain airbags in the upper structure and seats helps protect passengers from side impacts and complements driver and front passenger airbags. Available Ford Co-Pilot360™ driver-assist technologies plus standard AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control™ and Trailer Sway Control help instill driver confidence. Equipment series redefine customization An all-new experiential-based equipment series provides unique flexibility to align capability with the adventure interests of each customer. Seven unique Bronco series are offered, with matched color and trim combinations. When combined with four content packages, numerous available options, 11 color choices and more than 200 dealer-installable accessories, personalizing an all-new Bronco SUV has never been easier. Series range from a base Bronco, a no-frills SUV for those who want to customize their own, to Big Bend™, Black Diamond™ and Outer Banks™ with a variety of options and colors, topping out with Wildtrak™ and Badlands™ for more extreme off-road adventuring. A limited-production First Edition™ will be offered at launch. Reservations begin today As with the five generations before it, the all-new 2021 Bronco two-door and four-door models will be built at Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan. More detailed information, including vehicle specs, accessories and full pricing and options, will be provided closer to launch. MSRP for the base two-door Bronco is $29,995, including $1,495 destination and delivery. Reservations for Bronco two- and four-door models can be made for $100 beginning at 8 p.m. EDT today at ford.com.  View full article
    • Happy Bastille Day, C&G folks ... whether or not you're a Francophile doesn't matter. France is also red, white, and blue (realistically blue, white, and red) and gave us the Statue of Liberty, too, not to mention an incredible chunk of our vocabulary - cachet, rendezvous, guillotine, RSVP, libertine, attache', hors d'oeuvres, etc.  Took 3 years of it in high school.  Good times.
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