Amid growing anticipation for the 2020 Ford Bronco SUV, the automaker seems to be reveling in the attention as it recently unveiled a race truck form of the model in the Nevada desert.
Dubbed as the Bronco R race truck, the model hints at how the final production version of the SUV is going to look like when it arrives next spring.
The Bronco R is headed to the Baja Peninsula, where it aims to mirror Ford’s success 50 years ago when Rod Hall and Larry Minor won the overall race at the 1969 Baja 1000. This time around, Shelby Hall, Rod Hall’s daughter, will pilot the Bronco R for parts of the race.
The race’s 1,000-mile trek will put the Bronco’s production powertrain to the test, which the Blue Oval previously hinted to be a twin-turbo EcoBoost engine.
To bring the Bronco R to life, Ford put together a team led by lead Bronco designer Paul Wraith. According to the automaker, the racing prototype is “representative of what the production Bronco will offer.”
With this statement, it’s safe to assume the body shape of the upcoming Bronco SUV will be very similar to that of the Bronco R’s, including the front grille with the nameplate spelled out across. Looking at the race truck, it’s easy to imagine where the production headlights and taillights will be mounted. A clamshell hood and roof on the Bronco R pay homage to the first-generation Bronco. But overall, it looks like loyalists will not be disappointed with Ford’s off-road treatment on the SUV.
The Bronco R also sits on Ford’s T6 architecture, although a lot of the parts of the race truck are likely not going to be included in the soon-to-arrive SUV such as the roll cage, independent front suspension with 14 inches of travel, and five-link rear chassis design.
Ford recently announced that the 2020 Bronco SUV will be released next spring. Until then, potential buyers can ogle at the Bronco R’s design.