When considering the history of sport
utility vehicles, and the popularity of four-wheel drive vehicles, Ford's
Bronco plays a prominent role. It was introduced in 1966, and this body
style remained unchanged until it was replaced by a new full-size Bronco
Compared to today's 4x4, the Bronco was
designed to be very basic. Originally, 3 versions were introduced, a
wagon, what Ford called a sports utility pickup and a roadster, that had
a soft top roof and doors that fit in stylized door cut outs. On these
models, the windshield folded down, and with the wagon and pickup, the
roof could be removed.
To reduce costs, the Bronco used parts
from the F-100 parts bin, like the instrument cluster, and rear tail
lights. For the next few years, Ford upgraded their compact
four-wheeler. In 1967 a Sport Bronco option was offered, which added an
upgraded interior and exterior bright work. Two years later, the
windshield no longer folded down and the roofs were no longer removable.
Also, the cowl area was improved for reduced road
Mechanically, the Bronco suspension consisted of Ford's
Mono Beam design, with coil springs in front and leaf springs in the
rear. Brakes measured 11 x 2 inches and were made self-adjusting in
1967. Standard tires were 7.35x15.
The first models drove off the
assembly line with a 105 horsepower 170 cubic inch six from the now
extinct Falcon. A 289 was optional, with a 302 offered in 1970. The
Bronco was offered with plenty of options, such as a heavy-duty clutch,
limited-slip differentials front and rear, a 11.5 gallon auxiliary fuel
tank and a tailgate mounted spare tire.
Our retrospective 1970
Bronco was assembled at the Michigan Truck Assembly plant in Wayne,
Michigan in March 1970. It was and still is powered by a 302 V8 that
trumps up about 205 horsepower. As a testament to reliability and
simplicity, the transmission is the 3.03 Ford. This 3-speed worked well
with the Ford 9-inch Trac Lok limited-slip differential with 3.55:1
gears. Up front, there's a factory Dana 30 with 3.50:1
In total, 18,500 of these rigs were produced in
Our sincere thanks to Jeff Trapp of South Lyons, Michigan
for sharing his outstanding vehicle with us.
|1970 Bronco Specifications:
|Horsepower @ rpm:
||205 @ 4400|
|Torque (lb/ft) @ rpm:
||220 @ 2900|
||3-speed manual; 2-speed transfer case|
|Curb weight, lbs.:
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