Home New Products Book Review: Ford Bronco, A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4

Book Review: Ford Bronco, A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4

by Moses Ludel

Book Review: Ford Bronco, A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 by Todd Zuercher

Available hardbound with a protective jacket from SA Design/CarTech® Books.


Fifty-four years after the launch of the iconic Ford Bronco, Todd Zuercher’s new book brings that history to life. Ford Bronco—A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 provides an engaging, highly detailed account. Todd begins with the Bronco’s seminal concept, prototype design, research and development, production planning and initial marketing objectives.

Seen from within the corporation, the Bronco platform emerged amid sweeping Mustang sales and F-truck’s introduction of the new Twin I-Beam front suspension with coil springs and radius arms. Bronco pioneered the use of an open knuckle (Dana 30) live beam front axle—years ahead of the Jeep CJ, I-H Scout, Ford and GM pickup trucks or GM’s SUVs.

An in depth account of the classic 1966-77 Bronco, the 1978-96 full-size Bronco and the 1984-90 Bronco II.

As the Bronco met consumer demands, Ford engineers continued to set benchmarks for 4×4 utility, multipurpose uses, comfort, style and handling. Zuercher shares in depth how the first generation (1966-77) Ford Bronco launched industry trends for styling, performance, driving excitement, adventure and off-road racing successes. Todd highlights how the Bronco’s design and engineering initiatives forced the competition to take notice. In every way, the Ford Bronco led the field.

This colorful account is exciting, engaging and packed with details. Data about Bronco engineering and production changes helps propel the story. After sharply focusing on the classic Bronco, Zeurcher guides readers through the “full-size” (F-150 platform) Bronco and the years of the Ranger based compact Bronco II.

 Ford Bronco—A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 is a must read for those who value the contributions Ford made with the Bronco. For racers like Parnelli Jones to utility companies and all-season police forces, the original Bronco and Ford’s small-block V-8 power were a perfect match. Owners raved about the 4×4’s ability on rough terrain and in snow country. Three generations of ranchers, backcountry four-wheelers and all-season commuters know the merits of Ford’s first generation Bronco. Today, these 4x4s enjoy a loyal following and collector status.

The first Bronco models served a wide range of uses and boasted engineering advances for the period.

Todd Zuercher writes as only a highly informed motor head and Bronco enthusiast can do.  His engaging and insightful style has its complement in an exceptional array of rare, period photographs. Corporate documents bring new depth to the story of this marque.  Every Bronco owner and Ford enthusiast will find this book essential. Four-wheelers and readers of every ilk will appreciate the scope of Todd’s knowledge.

As rumors circulate about Ford’s launch of a new generation 4×4 Bronco, Todd Zuercher’s comprehensive work serves as the authoritative refresher course on why we value the Ford Bronco. Todd Zuercher reignites our passion for this American icon, recalling the people and the period that assured the Bronco’s success.

An optimal holiday gift, this SA Design/CarTech® book is available through automotive book channels, Barnes & Noble, Summit Racing and Amazon. Hardbound with a protective jacket, the heavily illustrated work will earn its place on any bookshelf.  

Every ‘wheeler has an early Bronco recollection…I was sixteen-years-old with a set of Jeep keys in my pocket when the Ford Bronco captured my imagination…In the fall of 1965, Neddenriep Ford took its first Bronco demonstrator to a local 4×4 hill climb competition. Heavily modified Jeep CJs, Scout 800s and a Chevrolet V-8 powered Land Cruiser dominated that event near Carson City, Nevada. Despite the modest performance of a 170 cubic inch inline six-cylinder engine and a hopping coil-sprung front axle that impaired traction, Ford’s all-new 4×4 drew a crowd. The 4×4 Bronco would soon up its suspension game, add V-8 power and become a fierce competitor in the world of four-wheeling motorsports!—Moses Ludel

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