2021 Ford Bronco Sport

What’s new

  • A new off-road capable SUV based on the Ford Escape
  • Part of the first Bronco Sport generation introduced for 2021

Pros & Cons

  • More all-terrain capabilities than your typical SUV
  • Smart features for both adventures and everyday use
  • Lots of customization options
  • Rugged styling
  • Three-cylinder base engine is likely pretty weak
  • Last-generation infotainment system
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2021 Ford Bronco Sport Review

What is the Bronco Sport?

The redesigned Ford Bronco is a significant addition to the Blue Oval's lineup — after more than two decades, Ford aficionados will finally see the return of a body-on-frame off-roader intent on beating the Jeep Wrangler at its own game. But what if you want Bronco styling and abilities in a more road-friendly — and affordable — package?

Enter the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport. Based on the Ford Escape, the Bronco Sport aims to marry the look and feel of the Bronco with traditional crossover strengths including a more refined road-going experience. The Bronco Sport should still hold its own when venturing off the beaten path thanks to standard four-wheel drive, multiple traction settings, and a wealth of optional off-road upgrades.

What's under the Bronco Sport's hood?

Standard on the base, Big Bend and Outer Banks trim levels is a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine with 181 horsepower and 190 lb-ft of torque. You also get four-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Upgrade to the off-road-oriented Badlands or First Edition, and you'll be rewarded with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder producing 245 hp and 275 lb-ft, plus a more off-road-capable 4WD system.

What about the Bronco Sport's off-road stuff?

Aside from its more unique and expressive styling, the available off-road goodies might be the reason you choose the Bronco Sport over the Escape. With standard 4WD, along with Slippery and Sand traction control modes, every Bronco Sport model should prove to be quite capable at navigating tricky terrain.

The Badlands and First Edition raise the ante with an upgraded 4WD system that incorporates a clutch at each rear axle, allowing it to shunt almost all torque to either rear wheel when the situation calls for it. They also add Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl traction modes, extra powertrain coolers, unique suspension upgrades and all-terrain tires.

Available features include Trail Control. This is a kind of off-road cruise control you can use to have the Bronco Sport accelerate (up to 20 mph) and brake automatically while you just worry about steering. There's also a front-facing camera to help you watch for objects and other obstructions while off-roading, and even comes with a washing system to keep mud from obscuring the lens. You can further spec front tow hooks in case you run into a jam.

How's the Bronco Sport's interior?

The Bronco Sport's interior is very similar to the redesigned Ford Escape's. Front and center are an upright 8-inch touchscreen, chunky infotainment knobs and buttons, and straightforward climate controls. The center console features a rotary transmission selector, plus assorted buttons governing the drive modes, parking brake and other controls.

The one major difference is that the Bronco Sport's air vents flank the touchscreen, freeing up space immediately below for a small storage tray. Ford says the Bronco Sport affords best-in-class headroom for both rows; we have several too-tall editors willing to put these claims to the test.

How's the Bronco Sport's tech?

Just because the Bronco Sport is geared toward active lifestyles doesn't mean the tech offerings suffer. All trims will come with Ford's Co-Pilot360 suite of active safety features, which consists of forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, a blind-spot monitor and lane keeping assist. The Co-Pilot360 Assist+ option adds lane centering, adaptive cruise control and navigation to the mix, while Co-Pilot360 2.0 adds traffic sign recognition, allowing the adaptive cruise system to alter speed based on the observed speed limit.

The only quibble we have is that the touchscreen features the Sync 3 operating system. It's not bad, mind you — we actually think it's one of the better systems out there. But the bigger Bronco comes with Sync 4, which introduces the ability for over-the-air updates and even includes trail maps.

How's the Bronco Sport's storage?

We don't know how much space the cargo area itself holds, but Ford says two mountain bikes standing upright will fit with the rear seats folded. In a throwback to old-school SUVs, you can flip up the rear window glass independently of the liftgate to create space for longer items.

The Bronco Sport is also quite useful, with thoughtful solutions suited to its intended use. Badlands and First Edition models, for instance, offer rubber flooring and sealed switches so you can easily clean out the interior after a day of adventuring. There's an available storage bin under the rear passenger seat where you can load muddy gear, while the cargo management system adds a rear work table, a household-style power outlet and tailgate-mounted floodlights.

Edmunds says

The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is a little more civilized than the Bronco, but this compact crossover can still do the job when pavement turns to dirt.

Consumer reviews

There are no consumer reviews for the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport.

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    2021 Ford Bronco Sport video

    2021 New Ford Bronco Reveal

    2021 New Ford Bronco Reveal

    SPEAKER 1: three and a half years ago, Ford teased with the Bronco logo at the Detroit Auto Show, a vehicle they haven't produced in over 20 years. Well, the wait is over. And not only do we have one Bronco, we have three. [MUSIC PLAYING] We have the two-door Bronco, the four-door Bronco, and the Bronco Sport, which is based off of the Escape. The main Bronco will go on sale in the beginning of 2021 while the Bronco's Sport will be available near the end of 2020. Of course, style is one of the biggest draws for the Bronco. And it has a ton of it, especially when we talk about the cool retro heritage that comes with the original first gen Bronco. First off, we have this one-piece grille and the round headlight styling. That is unmistakable Bronco styling. And quite honestly, I love it. We also have very, very short overhangs that gives it a very steep approach angle as well as in the back with the departure angles. Now, modularity is going to be a word that comes up a lot in this video because almost everything you see here is removable or modifiable. These rails right here are very sturdy, easily removable, but they give you a very good indication of where the corners are when you're off roading. Throughout the side, we also have big, featureless kind of door panels if we had doors. But the key here, too, is it's very quick to remove the doors. It's one bolt that goes through the hinge, pretty smart and a lot easier than pulling doors off of a Wrangler. Further down, we have a lot more heritage traits coming in. But most importantly, it looks great. The rear 3/4 looks fantastic with these upright tail lights and with a tire mounted on the rear gate. Now, I don't have full specs yet, so I'm going to send that forward to future Mark. As you probably can tell, I was rushed for time and short on information when I was checking out the Broncos in Michigan. But I'm home now. And I have a lot more to share with you, at least all the information we have so far. So let's start with specs. The two-door and four-door Broncos will be body-on-frame SUVs, which means they're built a lot like a pickup truck. They should have better off road and towing capabilities than the typical modern crossover SUV. The two door has seating for four while the four door has seating for five. The base engine will be a 2.3-liter turbo-charged four cylinder that makes 270 horsepower and 310 lb feet of torque. Not all that impressive, but there will be an upgrade. There will be a 2.7-liter turbo-charged V6 that's good for 310 horsepower and 400 pound feet of torque. Now, that sounds a lot more appropriate, especially for the four-door Bronco. At the moment, there is no word or even a hint that there will be a hybrid-electric variant. But one could hope. The big news as far as I see it is transmissions because the base transmission will be a seven-speed manual transmission. You heard right, a stick shift in the Bronco. But get this. The seventh speed will be a dedicated crawl gear. Brilliant! How cool will that be? Unfortunately, that transmission will only be offered on the base four-cylinder engine. The V6 will get a 10-speed automatic, which will also be optional on the four cylinder. As a proper offroader, these Broncos will come standard with a two-speed transfer case. There is also an option for an electromechanical transfer case. The front suspension gets AA arms while the rear is a solid-axle multilink setup. Both get coilovers and Bilstein shocks. There will be several trims and packages available with awesome-sounding names like Big Ben, Black Diamond, Outer Banks, Badlands, and Wild Track. There's even one called Sasquatch, which comes with beadlock capable wheels. Rad. Some of these may alter the Bronco's off-road capabilities for better or worse. But even in base form, the specs are strong. Add in the available 35-inch all-terrain tires, and those specs get downright impressive. In base form, the Bronco will have 8.4 inches of ground clearance. Approach angle is 35 and 1/2 degrees. Break over is 21.1 degrees. And departure angle is 29.8 degrees. If you opt for the 35-inch all-terrain tires, ground clearance claims to an impressive 11.6 inches. Approach angle increases to 43.2. Break over's 29 degrees. And departure angle is 37.2 degrees. And with a Sasquatch package, maximum fording depth comes to 33 and 1/2 inches. Wow. Because I was so rushed in Michigan when I was taking a look at those Broncos, I want to take a little more time to go over all the details. And there are a ton of them. They all add up to something pretty amazing. Now, starting from the front, let's talk about that grill. It is, obviously, a nod to the first generation Bronco from 1966, the one-piece horizontal grill with two round headlights on either side. Just above those headlights are some cool cleats. Now, those cleats can be used as tie downs for whatever you want to secure to the hood rather than using tow straps that go from a bumper, pass the headlights, onto the hood because those straps will block some of the forward line that you have available to you. Those cleats also serve as limb lifters or limb risers. So if you're off roading through some dense woods, put a cable between that and the top of the windshield, and they'll gently lift some of that vegetation right out of the way. There's also a very cool detail within those cleats. And that is the shape of the grille itself-- two dots with a horizontal bar between them. It's a nice little touch. But it also serves a purpose. We can still secure stuff with a nylon strap through that slot while also using the limb lifters through one of the round holes. You'll also notice at the top of the fender is a tiny little peak. And that's also a nod to the original first-generation Bronco that had these kind of almost fins that go from nose to tail. If you were to look at the classic Lincoln Continental, it has something similar with that fin that goes the entire length of the vehicle. Not only is it a nice little aesthetic touch, but it also serves a purpose. It gives the driver a much better indication of where the corners are on the vehicle. If you've ever driven an old classic car with tail fins, you know what I'm talking about. There are even cool details about the mirrors. You might notice that they're not mounted to the doors. And we'll get to that in a bit. They're mounted to the hood, that section just between the hood and the windshield. Now, there are several benefits there, too. First off, when you remove the doors on the Bronco, that means you still have mirrors. And integrated into those mirrors are a lot of the surround view and off-road capable cameras. So you're not going to lose anything by taking off the doors except, well, you know, protection. Also at the top of the windshield, you might see these two little tabs. If you pop those open, underneath will be two hard mounting points. Now, that means you can mount anything you want up there. Whether it's a light bar or a big heavy rack, it can handle it. A few months ago, a few pictures of the Bronco leaked online. And the Bronco faithful had a few objections, notably the black plastic fenders that were shown. But I will say that they're very quickly mobile with some quick release tabs underneath. So within a matter of seconds, not minutes, you can pull them off and hit the trails. Another cool detail are the torque bolts that seem to hold everything together on the Bronco. There's this very cool embossed Ford logo in it. Now, that's a throwback to the World War II era when Ford was building jeeps for the war effort. Now, they distinguished the Ford build jeeps from everyone else with a slight little F, Ford, on their bolts. I like details like that. Further down the vehicle are the doors which are, obviously, removable. But unlike the Jeep Wrangler, these doors are removable with a single long bolt. It has an added bonus-- they're coupe like doors, which means they don't have these roof pillars attached to them. So here's the kicker. When you roll the windows down and remove the door, it can fit inside the car if you have the option for stowable doors. They also built in clever handholds right where you would normally try to grab it because they're not particularly light either. So with the handholds at the corners, you should be able to get it into the back of the Bronco with a little less effort. Also removable are roof panels. And when you do remove them, you have a straight shot right up to the sky. There's no big bar kind of blocking your view. You can literally stand up in the front seats and look out the top just like Safari style. Sign me up. In the back, there is a side-hinged rear gate. But if you ask me, it's hinged on the wrong side, at least for the US, where we drive on the right side of the road. That means if you're parked on the street, in order to load anything into the cargo area, you'll have to do it from the driver's side of the car. I brought that up to the Ford designer. And he was very quick to respond that, if it was hinged on the left side, that means you're opening that gate into traffic, leaving yourself open to the possibility that someone might drive right into it. So I'll give him that one. As for the interior of the Broncos, they are just as cool. Keep in mind that wherever you see one of these torque bolts, it's an indication that whatever it's mounted on is removable. And that goes for those handhelds that are right on the edges of the dash as well as on the center console for the front passenger. That means you have the freedom to swap them out, or remove them, or add extra ones to your heart's content. I certainly wouldn't be surprised if the aftermarket community comes full force with a ton of accessories for the Broncos. Now, talking about those handholds for the front passenger, you might notice that there's one on the side right where the dash ends. There's also one right next to the center console. That means that the front passenger can actually triangulate themselves with their handholds, giving them a much better purchase on the seat so they won't be bounced around when you're really doing some serious off roading. One of the coolest interior features of the Bronco is something that I had wished would show up in the Land Rover Defender. And that's a drain plug in the floor. You know where I'm going with this? [GIGGLES] That means you can hose off a lot of the interior, open up that drain plug, and it just goes draining out the bottom of the car. Brilliant. It was something that the original Land Rover Defender had. And just like the Defender, this new Bronco has sealed switches where it counts. So you won't short circuit a thing when you're hosing all that mud and dust out of the interior. The theme of modularity also carries over to features that are as typical as map pockets. In the doors, you'll see those pockets with some netting. But those are also removable. Swap out with whatever you want, or make whatever you want. Another cool detail that I fell in love with on a Bronco was on the top of the dash. It's this little accessory rail that you mount stuff to. In a lot of ways, it looks like a picatinny rail if you're into shooting sports. But it's something that you mount a GoPro to, a radar detector to, a phone mount. Whatever you can dream up, you could probably mount it to that system. And if you don't have that kind of system, if you don't have the particular mounting hardware for that kind of rail, you're still in luck. That entire rail is removable and can be replaced with something that you can use. All of this new Bronco goodness won't end when you leave the vehicle either. When they go on sale in 2021, you'll have the option to attend the Off Rodeo. The Off Rodeo will be an offroad school situated at four permanent locations throughout the country. And it'll allow, let's say, less gifted off roaders get the skills they need to tackle some real rock crawling. Also available will be something called Bronco Nation, an online community for previous and current Bronco owners to talk about great trails, show off the rides, and just feel like they're part of a big movement again. The Bronco Sport is based off the Ford Escape and, obviously, won't be as rugged as the other Broncos. But it will be capable nonetheless. The base engine is a 181 horsepower 1.5 liter three cylinder, which sounds a little weak. There is an upgrade to a 2-liter turbo-charged four cylinder that's good for 245 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic is the only transmission offered. But four-wheel drive and a locking differential is available. Thanks, future me. Man, that guy is a hell a lot smarter than I am, isn't he? We're going to have a lot more information on all the Bronco lineup as we get closer to its on-sale date. So keep checking back with edmunds.com for the latest. And of course, if you want to know anything about them and their competition, head on to edmunds.com. To see more videos like this, hit subscribe.

    The Ford Bronco is back! And not only that, but it's also available in three different flavors: a two-door, a four-door and the Bronco Sport.

    Features & Specs

    Badlands 4dr SUV AWD features & specs
    Badlands 4dr SUV AWD
    2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A
    MPG N/A city / N/A hwy
    SeatingSeats 5
    Transmission8-speed shiftable automatic
    See all for sale
    Outer Banks 4dr SUV AWD features & specs
    Outer Banks 4dr SUV AWD
    1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A
    MPG N/A city / N/A hwy
    SeatingSeats 5
    Transmission8-speed automatic
    See all for sale
    4dr SUV AWD features & specs
    4dr SUV AWD
    1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A
    MPG N/A city / N/A hwy
    SeatingSeats 5
    Transmission8-speed automatic
    See all for sale
    First Edition 4dr SUV AWD features & specs
    First Edition 4dr SUV AWD
    2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A
    MPG N/A city / N/A hwy
    SeatingSeats 5
    Transmission8-speed shiftable automatic
    See all for sale
    See all 2021 Ford Bronco Sport features & specs

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    Is the Ford Bronco Sport a good car?

    The Edmunds experts tested the 2021 Bronco Sport both on the road and at the track. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Ford Bronco Sport. Learn more

    What's new in the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport?

    According to Edmunds’ car experts, here’s what’s new for the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport:

    • A new off-road capable SUV based on the Ford Escape
    • Part of the first Bronco Sport generation introduced for 2021
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    Is the Ford Bronco Sport reliable?

    To determine whether the Ford Bronco Sport is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the Bronco Sport. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the Bronco Sport's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

    Is the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport a good car?

    There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is a good car. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2021 Bronco Sport is a good car for you. Check back soon for the official Edmunds Rating from our expert testing team Learn more

    How much should I pay for a 2021 Ford Bronco Sport?

    The least-expensive 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $26,660.

    Other versions include:

    • Badlands 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A) which starts at $32,660
    • Outer Banks 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A) which starts at $32,160
    • 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A) which starts at $26,660
    • First Edition 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A) which starts at $38,160
    • Big Bend 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A) which starts at $28,160
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    What are the different models of Ford Bronco Sport?

    If you're interested in the Ford Bronco Sport, the next question is, which Bronco Sport model is right for you? Bronco Sport variants include Badlands 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), Outer Banks 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A), 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A), and First Edition 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A). For a full list of Bronco Sport models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

    More about the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport

    2021 Ford Bronco Sport Overview

    The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is offered in the following submodels: Bronco Sport SUV. Available styles include Badlands 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), Outer Banks 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A), 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A), First Edition 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A), and Big Bend 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo 8A).

    What do people think of the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport?

    Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport and all its trim types. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2021 Bronco Sport.

    Edmunds Expert Reviews

    Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2021 Bronco Sport featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

    Our Review Process

    This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

    We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

    What's a good price for a New 2021 Ford Bronco Sport?

    Which 2021 Ford Bronco Sports are available in my area?

    Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2021 Ford Bronco Sport for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport.

    Can't find a new 2021 Ford Bronco Sports you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

    Find a new Ford Bronco Sport for sale - 12 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $22,861.

    Find a new Ford for sale - 8 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $17,788.

    Why trust Edmunds?

    Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

    Should I lease or buy a 2021 Ford Bronco Sport?

    Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

    Check out Ford lease specials