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2024 Ford Bronco Sport Review: Adorable entry-level off-road vehicle becomes less costly

Pros: Excellent off-road performance, particularly in the Badlands; spacious and adaptable cargo area; assortment of trims and packages

Cons: Pricey for its size class; narrow rear seat; less luxurious on the road than competitors

First, the unfavorable information: Considering its little size, the bronco sport 2024 costs more than you might anticipate. Aside from its class-leading load capacity and standard all-wheel drive technology, many purchasers will find it to be significantly more expensive than competing subcompact SUVs.

Alright, the good news now! A charming, adaptable, and all-around fun small crossover, the Bronco Sport is especially ideal for individuals who intend to get their little SUV dirty. While it’s true that the greatest vehicle for off-roading is the range-topping Badlands, it’s also worth noting that the Bronco Sport is more about what you do after the drive than the drive itself. No matter what outdoor adventure gear you’re hauling, its useful roof rails, pop-up liftgate glass, and accessible tow hitch will gladly take it. In addition, the driving experience is pleasantly more truck-like than in other subcompact crossovers, which accentuates the rich character that its exterior and interior design already offer.

Put otherwise, a specific consumer base is best suited for the Bronco Sport. The fact is, however, that a lot of people nowadays desire to be outdoor adventurers, even though many also acknowledge they won’t always live that lifestyle of donning Patagonia. In either case, the Bronco Sport ought to satisfy you. If the budget is a problem, however, the off-road variants of the Toyota RAV4, Subaru Crosstrek, and Volkswagen Taos offer a comparable experience at a reduced cost or greater value.

For 2024, what’s new?

You’re going to enjoy the 2024 Ford Bronco Sport Free Wheeling special edition if you’re a lover of the Houston Astros, especially their vintage “tequila sunrise” uniforms. Rather than Nolan Ryan and friends, it officially honors Ford’s off-road vehicles from the 1970s with five orange and red stripes on the bonnet and flanks in addition to red-accented wheels. Similar stripes are used on the interior doors and dash, along with red accents. It’s quite a bit. The new Black Appearance kit for the Big Bend trim level adds sport seats, matte black badging, a contrasting black roof, and matte black wheels for the exact opposite appearance. Lastly, two new exterior colors—Azure Gray and Desert Sand—and a better steering wheel cover are added to the Outer Banks and Badlands levels. Sadly, Alto Blue, Area 51, Cyber Orange, Iconic Silver, Peak Blue, and Yellowstone Metallic are among the many colors that pass away. They weren’t by themselves: The base price has increased due to the discontinuation of the Bronco Sport base model. Nevertheless, starting in April 2024, Ford lowered the price of every model, excluding the Badlands. Our price section has a list of them below.

How do the inside and in-car technologies of the Bronco Sport compare?

Inside, the Bronco Sport has the sensation of a small vehicle. You look over a long, straight hood with two huge power bulges while sitting erect. The distinctive cabin style of the Bronco Sport is more erect and practical than that of the mechanically similar Escape. There’s a useful shelf for a phone or small item, and the air vents are high, straddling the shared 8-inch touchscreen. In addition to high-quality components like the robust GOAT Modes dial and spongy soft-touch dashboard, there are also clever details like the rubberized, graspable adjustment prongs on those air vents (that would be Go Over Any Terrain, the Bronco word for off-road drive modes). Granted, the Bronco Sport uses less expensive plastics than other subcompact SUVs, but at least Ford partially offsets this with the way specific trim levels use color and fabric selections.

Extraordinary interior storage is also available. For weekend hikers and campers, there are a ton of amenities as you travel rearward past the several storage options up front. Zipper pockets and MOLLE straps on the front seatbacks are standard on some trim levels (why haven’t these been considered earlier?).The sturdy real thing raised roof rails (not raised or false rails with fixed connection points) are included on the liftgate, which also boasts two LED camp lights and large grab grips that can be used to hang damp belongings. Additionally, there is a long number of accessories and options for an outdoor lifestyle, like rubberized, easily cleanable flooring and the capacity to store two bikes within a car.

Ford’s infotainment system, which uses software from a previous generation, is not the fastest device available, but it is still user-friendly and looks good. There are four USB ports by default. Although higher trims give a larger 6.5-inch screen between the physical gauge set, the cluster still has a 4.2-inch central screen.

What is the Bronco Sport’s size?

Despite using the Escape’s base, the Bronco Sport is significantly smaller overall than the Escape. Being a subcompact SUV, it fits well with the Volkswagen Taos, Kia Seltos, and Chevrolet Trax. Although its compact size makes it ideal for off-roading in confined spaces, it is not as family-friendly as many other crossovers that are designed with roads in mind.

Although it’s not the most spacious in the class, adults may sit there with ease. Unlike the Trax and Taos, there can be little legroom, especially in the back. Even while it has enough cargo space to accomplish the work, a rear-facing child seat is a tight fit, so this isn’t the best option for families. In fact, the 32.5 cubic feet of capacity it has behind its raised rear seat far outclasses crossovers with externally comparable sizes and can even compete with larger models like the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V. In fact, the Ford Escape’s rear seat must be pushed all the way forward to equal the Bronco Sport’s capacity to accommodate large bags. How is that even possible? Boxes are superior when it comes to freight. In our luggage test, we look deeper into the Bronco Sport’s best-in-class load capacity.

What are the performance and fuel efficiency specs for the Bronco Sport?

A 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine with 181 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque powers all trim levels but the Badlands. It comes equipped with all-wheel drive as standard and is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Rated for 25 mpg in the city, 29 mpg on the highway, and 26 mpg overall. This is about the same as the equally off-road-focused Subaru Forester Wilderness and slightly lower than the Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road, but it is still far lower than other subcompact SUV competitors. If fuel economy is important to you, the RAV4 Woodland Edition is the soft roader to choose. It has the same enhancements as the TRD Off-Road, but it also has a hybrid drivetrain that allows it to get 37 mpg overall. All of the aforementioned are obviously larger than the Bronco Sport.

The Badlands are the only vehicles with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. With its 250 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque, this engine is significantly more powerful than the average subcompact and those larger, off-road SUVs. It has an eight-speed automatic transmission linked to it as well, but for improved off-road performance, it adds a torque-vectoring rear differential to the rear axle. With the larger engine, fuel economy drops even lower to 21/26/23 mpg.

How is the ride quality of the Bronco Sport?

Within an SUV market that leans more toward the on-road end of the spectrum, the tough Bronco Sport stands out as unique and endearing. The steering still has the accuracy we’ve come to expect from Ford’s cars and crossovers, but it also has a hint of play or liveliness that gives it a small truck feel on the road. Its shorter wheelbase and off-road-ready suspension are probably the reason for the added bounce and stiffness to the on-road ride that you don’t get in other crossovers this size, regardless of trim level. When you start to push, the Bronco Sport is a little sloppy, so that doesn’t convert into skill at carving corners. Rivals with a more focus on the road, such as the Mazda CX-30, VW Taos, and Kia Seltos, offer better handling and a more comfortable ride. The Ford Escape, which is mechanically similar, also does.

However, the Bronco Sport excels and is far superior off-road, surpassing expectations. By adjusting the all-wheel-drive torque split, transmission shift points, traction control/stability control settings, throttle tuning, brake tuning, and steering weight, each GOAT (Go Over Any Terrain) mode significantly changes how the Bronco Sport drives. The Badlands has an additional inch of ground clearance over the other models, which is particularly noteworthy. We stumbled along a path, hearing an Outer Banks and Big Bend Bronco Sport struggling in areas where our Badlands was performing perfectly. When driving on sand, its torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive technology proved useful as well. However, nobody will confuse the Sport for its larger Bronco sibling. It’s still a crossover, but its off-road potential has been sacrificed in order to make it quieter and more comfortable on the road.

Although the 1.5-turbo is not very fast, it is lively and has the characteristic three-cylinder, gravelly, bulldog-like growl. For a car like this, the transmission blends in the background and doesn’t stand out, which is fortunate. In terms of conventional powertrains, tiny crossovers don’t get much worse than this. Nevertheless, you can also go far better and choose the Badlands’ 2.0-liter 250 horsepower engine, which is further matched with an improved torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system that is advantageous both on and off the road. It ought to come in more variations.

Which other reviews are there for the Ford Bronco Sport?

First Drive of 2021 Ford Bronco Sport

an in-depth examination of the engineering and design of the Bronco Sport, including impressions from both on- and off-road driving.

Review of the Ford Bronco Sport Badlands Road Test

Specifically, a look at the 2.0-liter turbocharged engine and torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system of the top-of-the-line Badlands.

Review of the Ford Bronco Sport’s interior storage

The Bronco Sport has a ton of innovative storage options, including an in-car bike rack and MOLLE strap connectors. Everything is covered in this ford bronco sport review.

Test of the Ford Bronco Sport Luggage

Discover the actual amount of cargo space behind the rear seat of the Bronco Sport.

Ford Bronco Sport Badlands Suspension Deep Dive:

Engineer Dan Edmunds examines the suspension system in detail, describing its components and their consequences.

Design of the Ford Bronco Sport Deep Dive:

How the Little Bronco Was Realized We have a conversation with the design team to find out the inner workings of their process.

How much does the 2024 Bronco Sport cost?

Even with a large price reduction in April 2024, the Bronco Sport remains highly expensive for an SUV of its size, despite our great appreciation for it. It’s true that the Big Bend trim is the entry point now that the prior Base trim level was withdrawn, raising the base price. However, certain trims cost more than equivalent SUVs in the same size.

Big Bend, Outer Banks, and Badlands are the standard Bronco Sport trim levels; Heritage and Free Wheeling, which are seen below, are more akin to Big Bends with appearance upgrades. While equipment does go up with each of those base trims, the differences are fundamental. Primarily, the Badlands and Outer Banks depart from the typical terrain provided by the Big Bend. Together with the vibrant interior options, the Outer Banks offers a tonne of comfort and convenience amenities. The same comfort and convenience features are present in the extreme off-road-focused Badlands, but outward and interior design cues are different. Crucially, it also comes with a plethora of off-road goodies, such as a special Badlands suspension, extra transmission and rear-drive coolers, bash plates, front tow hooks, all-terrain tires, and a torque-vectoring rear diff.

Cars Direct and Autoblog have obtained a dealer bulletin from earlier in April 2024 that states that Ford removed a low-four-figure number from all Bronco Sport trims save the Badlands. Following the $1,595 destination fee, the 2024 Bronco Sport’s new prices, which are different from the prior list price, are:

$31,390 ($1,435 less) in Big Bend

Heritage: $33,690, minus $1,335

$33,990 for free wheeling ($1,335 less)

$35,530 ($1,980 less) for the outer banks

Badlands: $39,985 (Same as before)

What are the driver assistance features and safety ratings for the Bronco Sport?

The Ford Co-Pilot360 driver assistance suite is included as standard equipment with every Bronco Sport. This features automatic high beams, lane-keeping assistance, blind-spot and rear cross-traffic detection, and forward automated emergency braking. Adaptive cruise control, lane centering assistance, evasive steering assistance, and speed sign recognition are further features offered in the Assist+ package.

It has outstanding safety ratings; the government’s NHTSA awarded it a flawless five stars for frontal, side, and total crash protection. The 2023 Bronco Sport received a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety because to its superior performance in all crash tests and its advanced accident-prevention technology. Its basic headlights received an almost unheard-of “Good” rating, the highest attainable. As of this writing, the 2024 Bronco Sport has not yet received a rating, although it’s difficult to imagine how it wouldn’t receive the same rating considering that it carried over in aspects that would affect IIHS testing unchanged.

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