Ford’s all-new 2021 Bronco and 2021 Bronco Sport have seen an enthusiastic reception from off-roading enthusiasts since their unveiling on July 13.
In the first three weeks, more than 165,000 U.S. customers paid $100 deposits to secure the Bronco and Bronco Sport, with Ford saying that’s unprecedented in its history. But while the rugged SUVs appear to start off on the right foot in North America, they won’t start at all in Europe.
Ford has confirmed that neither the full-size Bronco nor the compact Bronco Sport will be exported to Europe. “The Bronco has been completely developed for the North American market. There are currently no plans to bring it to Europe,” a Ford Germany spokesman told Automobilwoche referring to both the Bronco and the Bronco Sport.
Unlike the Mustang, which Ford has turned into a global model with the launch of the sixth generation in 2015, the Bronco and Bronco Sport are likely to remain a North America-only affair. For now, Ford is not interested in developing European homologated variants, even though that wouldn’t be so complicated in the case of the Bronco Sport, which shares the platform with the Kuga SUV sold in Europe.
While Ford did not provide a reason for not bringing its new Bronco SUVs to Europe, it may have a lot to do with the EU’s strict 95 grams CO2 per kilometer emission standards introduced this year. Ford already has a relatively high CO2 fleet average and the Bronco and Bronco Sport would only drive that value even higher.
That’s because neither model features electrified powertrains, at least not at launch. The 2021 Bronco is offered with a 270 HP 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder and a 310 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6. The Bronco Sport offers customers the choice of a 181 HP 1.5-liter EcoBoost three-cylinder and a 245 HP 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder.
Will Ford choose to give the Bronco Sport the plug-in hybrid powertrain from the Kuga and sell it in Europe? Time will tell, but there’s already a precedent in the Ford Explorer PHEV launched in Europe earlier this year.