Ford’s launch of the reborn 2021 Bronco SUV couldn’t have gone much better. Its retro-flavored styling struck the right balance between old-school and modern. The lineup is appropriately broad, with models aimed at city slickers and boulder bashers alike. And the First Edition sold out, saw its production doubled, and then sold out again. But one large misstep loomed: The rough-and-tumble Sasquatch package, the key to unlocking the Bronco’s maximum off-road capability, couldn’t be paired with a manual transmission. That’s now changed.
Citing feedback from reservation holders, Ford confirmed it has decided to offer the Bronco’s seven-speed manual transmission with the Sasquatch gear on both the SUV’s two- and four-door body styles. As a refresher, the gearbox is a Getrag-sourced 7MTI550 seven-speed manual, with six forward gears in a conventional pattern and a crawler gear (marked “C”) located left and down from the first set of gates. The crawler gear—also known as a granny gear—is a super-low ratio that allows the Bronco to, well, slowly crawl over almost anything in its path.
The Sasquatch package is available on every Bronco—base, Big Bend, Black Diamond, Outer Banks, and Badlands, and standard on First Edition and Wildtrak—and brings 35-inch all-terrain Goodyear rubber; fatter flares; an additional suspension lift; high-travel, position-sensitive Bilstein shocks; two additional inches of track; 17-inch beadlock-capable wheels; and front and rear locking differentials with a 4.71 final-drive. The Sasquatch/manual pairing will offer a 94.75:1 maximum crawl ratio. Combine that with the go-anywhere goodies and you have one hell of a capable trail rig.
Official orders—for those who didn’t get in a pre-order–will open in December, but manual Sasquatch 2021 Bronco two- and foor-door models aren’t going on sale until late 2021. That’s likely due to Bronco production already being allocated to the various other available combinations.
Now that this oversight has been corrected, there was actually one more thing we’d like to ask for: a V-8 Bronco to battle Jeep’s forthcoming Hemi-powered Wrangler. Ford has already confirmed it won’t offer one, but the Sasquatch-package rig didn’t always offer a manual, did it?
The post About Face: The 2021 Ford Bronco Sasquatch Package *Will* Offer a Manual Transmission appeared first on Automobile Magazine.