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From Dusty Trails to City Pavements: The Enduring Legacy of Ford Bronco

CHRIS COLLARD October 05, 2023 Feature Stories


Several years before he landed a legal driver’s license, author Todd Zuercher began his Bronco life in the mountains of Northern Arizona behind the wheel of his parents’ 1969 wagon. Those backcountry adventures cutting firewood and camping planted a seed of inspiration which germinated into a 40-year love affair with the breed. As a collector and ardent disciple of all things Bronco, his encyclopedic knowledge of Ford’s off-road pony rendered him the perfect candidate to pen its chronicle.

01/ Indianapolis 500 champ Parnelli Jones was bitten by the Bronco bug, and built his legendary Big Oly for racing the NORRA Mexican 1000.

With its unveiling in 1965, the Bronco not only captured the hearts of Ford devotees, but the heart of America. Hunters, fishermen, and outdoor adventurers found this new SUV the perfect vehicle for getting out in the backcountry, and in the following decades it would enjoy both the thrill of victory and agony of defeat. Ford Bronco – A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 transports us on a journey through time with exceptional detail, delving into early engineering and development, power and drivetrain advancements through the decades, and various models.

02/ Author Todd Zuercher.

An entire section, Broncos in Competition, is dedicated to Bill Stroppe’s work with Ford in crafting their off-road racing program, the legendary Rod Hall and his 1969 Mexican 1000 victory, and Indianapolis 500 champion Parnelli Jones’ development of Big Oly. Other chapters include Bronco’s transition into the full-size market, the introduction of the more economical Bronco II, the platform’s retirement in 1996, and even the O.J. Simpson debacle.

03/ Ford Bronco – A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 takes us back to the beginning, and Ford’s early development of the Bronco and prototype platforms.

Ford Bronco – A History of Ford’s Legendary 4×4 has become the definitive source of information for this stallion of the desert, and with Ford resurrecting the Bronco in 2021 it has become a must-read for Bronco aficionados young and old. As for Zuercher, the 1969 bobtail he learned to drive in is still resting comfortably in the family corral. Available through Amazon or

04/ The Bronco’s utility made it popular with search and rescue, police departments, and utility companies.
05/ A section of this book is dedicated to each chapter of the Bronco’s 30-year chronicle.
06/ Access to Ford’s archives allowed the author to include information rarely seen by the public.
07/ Rock & Roll nobility, such as Ted Nugent, were ardent Bronco fans. Nugent, a.k.a The Motor City Madman, kept several generations in his corral.


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