July 9th. That’s the day that Ford will be unveiling and reintroducing the Ford Bronco SUV that ended production 26 years ago. The release date has a lot of people raising an eyebrow because it’s also OJ Simpson’s 73 birthday.
The Ford Bronco first rolled off the assembly line in 1966 and was touted as the original SUV capable of cutting a trail through the great outdoors.
The Detroit automaker released the date we can expect to see the new car on Instagram promising the wild would return.
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The Bronco probably made its most wild headlines not on Instagram over the weekend, but back in 1994 when a white Ford Bronco containing OJ Simpson lead police on a widely televised low-speed chase over 60 miles around Los Angeles.
Inside that Bronco in the backseat was former NFL running back OJ Simpson.
On Friday, June 17 of that same year Simpson was charged with two counts of murder in the deaths of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman. When Simpson didn’t turn himself in the LAPD declared Simpson a fugitive and issued a warrant for his arrest.
Later that evening drivers spotted Simpson in the back seat of the Bronco driven by his friend and former teammate Al Cowlings.
KNSD-TV reports more than 95 million people watched the chase. Also happening that day was Game 5 of the NBA Finals between the New York Knicks and Houston Rockets.
Ford tells the Detroit Free Press that the whole thing “purely coincidental.”
Brian Moody the executive editor of Autotrader told the DFP he agrees, “I’m sure it’s a coincidence but it does go to show that bringing back the Bronco is the right move. The Ford Bronco is so completely woven into the cultural fabric of America, stumbling upon points of ‘relevance’ happen accidentally. Like the Mustang and F-150, Ford Bronco is forever part of America’s shared experience.”
Simpson was acquitted of the murders in criminal court, but was later found responsible for both deaths in a civil trial.
Ford promised to invest $750 million and add 2,700 new direct jobs in the next three years at their manufacturing facility in Wayne, Mich. to help build the new vehicle. Also in the lineup will be a hybrid version.
Car and Driver reports that the new Bronco is aimed at taking on the Jeep Wrangler and will be available with either two or four removable doors as well as a removable roof and has an estimated sale price in the $30,000’s.
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