Ford's fabulous-looking fire rig doesn't just look the part.
The all-new 2021 Ford Bronco was made to be customized, and just last month, Ford unveiled a very special custom project built upon the new platform: the Ford Bronco Wildland Fire Rig concept, designed and built with cooperation from renowned outfitter Filson.
But far from just a pretty face - and we are quite fond of its soft, dreamy Forest Service Green exterior paint - the Filson Bronco concept was built to both celebrate and assist those men and women who are helping protect the US's natural resources, in a year when wildfires have proven especially pernicious.
Two fire fighting rigs inspired by the Filson Bronco have been donated to fire fighting stations, to help combat the blaze, and Ford and Filson have teamed up to provide additional support to firefighters and to the National Forest Foundation, which is behind efforts to reforest areas destroyed by high-intensity wildfires.
But what qualifies the Filson Bronco concept to fight wildfires? That was the subject of a recent video from The Bronco Nation, which went through, point-by-point, exactly what makes the concept such an asset in fighting the blaze.
The biggest transformation took place at the back, where Ford and Filson removed the four-door Bronco's rear seats and installed a Kimtek Firelite Transport Skid, plus a water hose hooked up to a 50-gallon high-pressure water tank with a pump. Also mounted in the back are a pair of hard hats, a drip torch, Stihl chainsaw, and a high-lift jack.
On top of the Bronco rests a rooftop cargo platform carrying a pulaski axe, shovel, jerry can, a "prescribed burn" flag, and some other field essentials. Up front, there's a rugged Modular Front Bumper from Ford Performance, carrying a Warn Zeon 10-S winch, which is rated to 10,000 pounds of pulling capacity with 100 feet of synthetic rope.
Other modifications to the factory Bronco are a mix of practical and aesthetic. Ford and Filson have fitted a number of auxiliary lights from Rigid Industries, including a 40-inch curved LED light bar and a pair of LED spotlights, and the roof bears flashing emergency lighting. Step inside the cabin and you'll find a rich interior with Otter Green canvas, inspired by Filson's rugged duffel bags, on the door skins, seat bolsters, and center console. The same color features on the instrument panel topper and grab handles.
But two of the most distinguishing features are the bimini-style roof and the cabin divider, both of which are made with Filson's fire-resistant ripstop nylon - a safe option given the sort of harrowing conditions the SUV is liable to encounter.
In the end, what we're left with is a rugged, well-equipped Bronco fire rig that not only looks the part, but has all the right tools to prove its worth in the field, as well. And did we mention it looks spectacular?