When Ford announced back in 2020 that they were reviving the storied Bronco name with a brand-new, super-tough 4×4, Australian motoring fans were ecstatic. Aussies love off-roading, so the prospect of a cool new ‘Jeep killer’ entering the market – especially one with such a high level of customisation offered from the factory – was a tantalising one.
Sadly, Ford Australia has since revealed that they won’t be bringing the car Down Under – consigning the Ford Bronco to be yet another cool Ford, like the F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E electric vehicles, that Aussies are set to miss out on.
Never fear, however: one enterprising firm has stepped up to the plate, and is importing and right-hand-drive converting Broncos themselves, to help fellow Aussies get their Bucking Horse fix… Although there’s a catch.
Melbourne’s Crossover Car Conversions, which has been converting LHD US-made vehicles for the Aussie market for years, have recently opened up their waiting list for new Broncos. CCC has already imported at least one Bronco, with the Melbourne Car Spotters Instagram page sharing a photo of an orange Ford Bronco Wildtrak parked at the Westfield Southland shopping centre in Cheltenham earlier this week.
So what’s the catch? Well, they won’t be cheap. Depending on the trim level, you’re probably looking at anywhere between AU$90,000 and $150,000 for a Bronco. The import duties and cost of converting the cars to right-hand drive takes its toll (literally)… As does the price shenanigans US Ford dealers play.
“The problem you have with America is the prices are overinflated by the dealers so you can’t buy them cheap, so they end up being so expensive just like a Shelby is right now… The price [demanded by dealers] will always be $10,000 to $15,000 over, maybe even $20,000 over the MSRP because of the demand over there,” CCC owner Craig Dean tells Chasing Cars.
The Bronco’s just the tip of the iceberg. Imported US domestic market vehicles are becoming increasingly common on Australian roads, with a number of firms around the country specialising in the whole import/RHD conversion shebang having popped up in recent years.
Popular candidates for importation/conversion include sports cars like the Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger, as well as full-sized pickup trucks like the Ford F-Series and GMC Sierra, which are prized by locals for their towing capacity and imposing on-road presence.
As for Ford Australia, they’re probably not that fussed by third parties wanting to bring Broncos to Australia. The Ford Ranger ute and Everest SUV, both of which were designed and tested in Australia and have formidable off-road capabilities, are still best-sellers.
Ironically, the new Ford Bronco actually shares the same T6 chassis as the Everest and Ranger… So unless you really want a soft-top, you’re probably better off saving your money and buying a Ranger. But that’s just, like, our opinion, man.