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Spy Shots Reveal Super Weird-Looking Ford Bronco Prototype

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Ford Bronco sheet

If it looks like a truck and drives like a truck, is it really a truck? In the case of a bizarre test mule spotted driving around Michigan recently, odds are pretty good that the answer to that question is “no, it’s probably a Ford Bronco in disguise.”

Autoblog published some choice spy photos last month of a camouflaged prototype driving around the Detroit area. What makes this mule so unusual is that the cab very much appears to be that of a Ranger SuperCab, but the rear seems to belong to an SUV with a shortened bed, wheels that are pushed in closer to the cab, and a bubble top. This leads Autoblog to conclude that this weird Frankenstein’s monster-looking thing is actually a Bronco prototype made up so as not to give away the look of the final product.

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1985 Ford Bronco
1985 Ford Bronco
Photo: Ford Motor Company

There’s reason enough to believe this is the case, especially given the widely held belief that the Ranger and Bronco are sharing underpinnings. This would make it easier to slap a Ranger face on a Bronco butt and make something that, frankly, looks weird and kinda ugly. But Car and Driver flips that belief a bit, suggesting that the Bronco is most likely riding on a new platform that will underpin the next-generation Ranger, which is expected to arrive not long after the Bronco (and bring the next-gen Ranger Raptor to the United States in the process).

It’s not known if the prototype here is the same that was seen testing in Detroit in December and speculated to be an early prototype for the Ford Courier small pickup.

In the meantime, while speculation abounds, let’s all mull over what you’d call a Ranger/Bronco hybrid. A Rancor? A Bronger? A Brangco?

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News Sources: Autoblog, Car and Driver