It's not a good day for certain 2021 Ford Bronco owners, and those with pending deliveries. On Thursday, the automaker announced a campaign to replace every molded-in-color hardtop built for Broncos produced with the option. Whether owners took delivery of their SUV, it's awaiting a quality check or hasn't begun production, every last one will get a new MIC hardtop.
Ford told Roadshow the existing hardtops are not up to the automaker's standards, but stressed these issues are only cosmetic. The problems do not affect their safety or functionality. All Broncos with soft-top roofs are not part of the replacement campaign.
For anyone who already got their hands on the hotly anticipated Bronco, there's no action required. Ford will send these owners a letter in the coming weeks with instructions on how the automaker will install the new MIC hardtop. For those waiting for their SUV while in transit, or if it's ready for delivery at the dealer, customers can still take delivery and then receive the same letter in the near future. However, the Blue Oval plans to prioritize the oldest SUVs first, and the first replacement units won't be ready until October.
Now, the worse news. For those who noticed their Bronco's build date came and went, it means the SUV is stuck in production limbo. Ford said SUVs in this category await replacement MIC hardtop roofs, but it does not have updated timing just yet. Those awaiting a new build date will receive additional information in September. For customers whose SUV is scheduled for production, expect delays, too. The company said these customers will receive updated timelines in October.
There's an even worse part. Anyone who sees their Bronco is not yet scheduled for production may be in for a lengthy wait. The automaker said if an order for a 2021 model isn't for a First Edition, it's being bumped to the 2022 model year. Ford plans to begin production of the 2022 Bronco in late December.
The company said the enthusiasm and demand is beyond what the automaker ever expected for the Bronco, and it's "disappointed in the inconvenience." To that end, the company will reward customers for continued patience. For those who will be pushed to the 2022 model year, expect dibs on new options and colors. In addition, Ford plans to send these customers exclusive Bronco merchandise and offers while issuing price protection. As long as customers don't configure a more expensive 2022 Bronco, it won't cost a penny more than their 2021 model, even if Ford increases the SUV's price next year.
Ford dealers will receive initial communication on these changes today, and Bronco customers will receive word from Ford on their SUV starting tomorrow.