Ford is hoping customers will be willing to pay a premium for its new SUV.
The new 2021 Ford Bronco Sport was unveiled yesterday alongside its more hardcore Bronco sibling. For customers who don't require the tougher off-road capabilities of the bigger Bronco, the Bronco Sport is a thriftier alternative with its smaller engines and front/rear independent suspension.
It's also quite a bit cheaper, and now that prices have been revealed, we can confirm that the Bronco Sport will start at $26,660 for the base model. This price excludes a delivery charge of $1,495. This is almost $2,000 cheaper than the base Bronco two-door and the four-door Bronco widens the price gap even further, as it starts at over $33,000.
Moving up through the Bronco Sport range, the Big Bend costs $28,160, the Outer Banksstarts at $32,160, and the Badlands carries a price tag of $32,660. Topping the range is the Bronco Sport First Edition at $38,500, which is over $20,000 less than the Bronco First Edition which has already sold out.
Only the top two trims get the 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder engine as standard, which produces 245 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. All other trims get the smaller 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder by default, which makes do with 181 hp and 190 lb-ft. Both engines are paired to eight-speed automatic transmissions.
Compared with other subcompact crossovers, the Bronco Sport isn't exactly cheap. For instance, the Jeep Compass starts at just $23,780 in 4x4 guise and the Subaru Crosstrek begins at $22,145. Elsewhere in Ford's lineup, the Escape - which shares a platform with the Bronco Sport - begins at $24,885, but 4x4 isn't standard. If you don't need 4x4, there are a slew of cheaper but more road-biased SUVs with a similarly-sized footprint like the Mazda CX-30 and Kia Seltos.
But as a middle ground between the softer Escape and the tougher Bronco, the Bronco Sport could be the sweet spot for many buyers. The latter's differential lock, available Rock Crawl driving mode, and Trail Control tech should make off-roading easier for novices. The Bronco Sport is slated to arrive at dealerships later this year.