It is the wheels and tires that basically give it away. Even the informal automobile fan will acknowledge they don’t seem to be even near unique. Critical automobile followers will discover a bunch of different tells, like the trendy LED headlights, the blocky painted metal bumpers, and the “Icon” badging rather than the long-lasting Ford lettering and Bronco badge on the grille and fenders. It takes a critical Ford Bronco fan to note the entrance flip indicators are the unsuitable form, the spare tire is on the unsuitable aspect, and all of the chrome is gone.
Recognizing all of Icon CEO and chief designer Jonathan Ward’s adjustments is half the enjoyable of an Icon car. Even when he is not attempting to be significantly refined, his model tends towards enhancing the unique design, not throwing it out.
With regards to the Icon BR sequence of traditional Ford Broncos, although, you’ve got received choices. The rig you see here’s a 1969 Icon BR Ford Bronco New College, and it is the way in which Ward has been doing them from the beginning. As a result of some prospects wished a extra refined, extra unique look however the identical world-class craftsmanship, there’s additionally the Outdated College sequence that is a lot tougher to identify as a customized. Many of the tells I listed above do not apply.
Both approach your style takes you, there is not any scarcity of the trademark Icon upgrades. Below the hood is a 460-hp Ford Coyote 5.0-liter V-Eight and your selection of a five-speed handbook or four-speed automated. From there, a twin-stick Atlas II switch case and Currie axles based mostly on the Dana 44 entrance and 60 rear deal with the twist. Controlling the axles are Fox shocks with coilover springs and adjustable anti-roll bars. All of that’s bolted to an Artwork Morrison chassis and topped by your selection of physique model, be it full-roof onerous high, full-roof tender high, half-cab pickup, or a Roadster with no doorways and solely a bikini tender high. Every physique is stripped naked and repainted with a marine-grade primer the physique store hates for a way onerous it’s to sand, then painted any shade you need. Ward strongly discourages fashionable flat paint finishes on Outdated College Broncos, however for a New College like this one, go nuts.
Not simply with the paint, both. Go nuts. Ward builds his Broncos for use like Broncos. These Currie axles are loaded with ARB air-locking differentials for critical crawling, when you’re keen to threat the paint job. These are 33-inch BFGoodrich KO2s on the Icon billet aluminum wheels, and that is a correct Warn 9.5 Ti winch built-in into the entrance bumper. The Atlas switch case is sweet for an 87:1 crawl ratio in low gear, higher than a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon. These items aren’t made to be trailer queens.
They do not drive like outdated vans, both. Even with this New College Bronco’s anti-roll bars of their softest setting for higher off-road trip and articulation, this factor drives in addition to a brand-new Wrangler. Round right here, off-road parks are typically within the mountains, and cruising out the winding roads to get there was truly enjoyable in its personal proper. Regardless of the tender setup, the physique would not lean practically as a lot as you’d anticipate it. All of the leaning it does is measured and nicely managed, making the Bronco really feel assured and sure-footed on the street.
Not tipping over within the first sharp bend is just one a part of the equation. Large Brembo disc brakes entrance and rear take orders from a Wilwood dual-circuit grasp cylinder that gives glorious pedal really feel and fast engagement. Nothing places a driver’s thoughts comfortable—particularly in an outdated truck—like good brakes, and these are nice brakes.
You need nice brakes when your rig has, at minimal, greater than double the unique horsepower. The classic 220-hp 302-cubic-inch (4.9-liter) Windsor V-Eight this explicit truck got here from the manufacturing unit with was little doubt a large enchancment over the usual 105-hp 170-cubic-inch (2.8-liter) I-6 and greater than sufficient for the unique chassis, however rattling if the 460 hp offered by the trendy Coyote V-Eight would not really feel excellent at this time. It looks like this engine and this truck had been designed for one another—it matches up that nicely. It has loads of energy for displaying off, ripping onto the freeway, and passing slowpokes. A lot to place a smile in your face, however not a lot the truck feels overpowered and unwieldy.
That energy is accompanied by the best soundtrack, an unmistakable Ford V-Eight rumble that eschews the Mustang’s scream at excessive rpm for a mellower sound befitting a truck. This truck having a handbook, you get to determine how a lot you need to hear of any explicit rpm vary, and you may need to. The shifter is ridiculously lengthy and mounted up near the sprint, as befits an outdated truck. The throws are inevitably lengthy, however the motion is surprisingly exact and the gears straightforward to seek out. Even with my quick legs, comfortably reaching all of the odd-numbered gears requires sitting up on the pedals and steering wheel, similar to in an outdated truck, however one which’s extra satisfying to drive than a contemporary handbook transmission Wrangler.
Though the shifter seems to be the half, it is rather a lot simpler to identify the Icon elements contained in the Bronco than out. The metal middle console seems to be too fashionable to be unique, and a peek beneath the lid reveals the touchscreen navigation and leisure system. The steering wheel is an Icon piece, however it seems to be prefer it may very well be a classic aftermarket half if not for the Icon lizard mascot within the middle of the horn button. Equally, the machined billet knobs on the sprint that management the wipers, fan, headlights, and temperature appear to be they may very well be classic, however they are not. Identical for the chrome steel trim items. The marine-grade Chilewich carpeting and seat covers are lower and trimmed in methods such issues weren’t finished within the ’60s, however the true giveaway is the gauges. Though they’re fitted in the identical hard-to-see spot because the originals (to the left of the steering column), they’re clearly fashionable.
All these items are nice, however as at all times, it is the little touches that make an Icon. The grille, the refined trim rings across the taillights, the outside door handles, door mirrors, and inside window cranks are machined from strong aluminum. It is a ridiculous quantity of over-engineering, however boy, do they really feel substantial in your arms. What’s extra, the home windows are electrical. The cranks truly solely transfer an inch and actuate hidden switches. Double-tap the driving force’s window crank to manage the passenger’s window.
Then there are the bits borrowed from the equally over-engineered world of aviation. The solar visors are constructed of sturdier stuff than any you’ve got ever seen in an car, as a result of they had been designed for jets. The little spotlights that protrude from both finish of the sprint got here from a Russian MiG fighter jet.
As at all times, elements and craftsmanship of this caliber do not come low cost or something near it. A full hardtop like this begins at a cool $207,000, and this explicit one got here in at $260,000 all mentioned and finished. As with every Icon construct, although, the sky is the restrict if you wish to customise. Simply get your order in now, as a result of there’s presently a multi-year wait on new builds. Not many can afford them, however amongst those that can, these items are common, and it is easy to see why. A minimum of promoting my home would truly purchase me one in all these, not like Ward’s much more spectacular Derelict fashions.