Ford is serious about taking the fight to Jeep, and it's going to do so not only with a new Wrangler-rivaling Bronco, but this, too—a "baby" Bronco. The image above, which apparently comes from a Ford dealer meeting held last month in Las Vegas, , which claims it shows the 2020 Bronco. However, a source familiar with Ford's product plans tells us this isn't the Bronco, but instead, a smaller crossover we'll call the "baby Bronco."
Bolstering our theory is this tidbit from , recounting the events of Ford's dealer meeting: "Dealers drove the 2019 Ranger in Las Vegas. They saw the new rear-wheel drive Explorer, redesigned Escape, as-yet-unnamed 2020 battery electric vehicle, an unnamed small 'rugged' SUV some call the baby Bronco, and the Mustang GT 500." No mention was made of a full-size Bronco being demonstrated, though the outline of the truck was teased in the background of the baby Bronco photo.
Ford first promised the baby Bronco in March, releasing the red teaser image shown above that we've superimposed alongside the image from the dealer meeting. No further details were released back in March, but it seems likely that the baby Bronco will be a Jeep Renegade-fighter. At the presentation where the red teaser image was first shown, Jim Farley, Ford's global markets chief, said that Ford wants to be a more serious player in the off-road SUV market
"Ford helped start the off-road phenomenon and has majored in off-road capability for decades–from the Bronco to the Raptor," Farley said in a press release from March. "Now, we’re ready to reclaim our rightful place as the off-road vehicle leader."
, Ford product head Hau Thai-Tang said in August that this smaller SUV would share its unibody platform with the Focus. That means it won't be a hard-core off-roader like the new Bronco, which we believe will be body-on-frame. that the baby Bronco didn't have a name yet, but its styling was inspired by the original Bronco of the 1960s.
That's definitely the case for the car shown in the newest leaked image—the round headlights and white contrasting roof immediately bring Ford's original off-road SUV to mind. Reuters reported that this baby off-roader may debut next year as a 2020 model. The 2020 Bronco is widely expected to debut at the Detroit Auto Show in January 2019. Perhaps we'll see its smaller sibling right around the same time.