Good news, everyone! It looks like the 2021 Bronco will get a manual gearbox after all! But despite Ford not offering one in any vehicle that resembles the Bronco, a new report says a seven-speeder is on the way. Though it might not be exactly what you’ve come to expect from multi-gear manuals.
Because according to The Drive, a bronco6g forum member found details on a new Getrag box that offers up to seven speeds and is designed for all-wheel drive sports cars, pick-ups, and light commercial vehicles.
The surprise is that the seventh-speed in this one is for crawling, a super low first gear that doesn’t ruin the total overdrive ratio (and therefore fuel economy) by packing one more gear in down low. It’s a design able to handle vehicle weights up to 4,000 kg, Getrag says, and handle up to 590 lb-ft depending on application, which should be plenty for any Bronco engine, especially the expected 2.7L EcoBoost four that makes 400 lb-ft in the F-150.
It’s designed to handle start-stop systems as well as rev-matching and there is hybrid capability to cover future electrification. A maximum gear ratio spread of 11 could give it a lower first gear and taller seventh than any competition.
On the other hand, we should mention that this modular box is also available in five and six-speed configurations, with six being much more likely for an SUV if such a transmission is even offered. Getrag’s website also shows off the gearbox in a Transit van, likely the LCV offering that the company mentions in the spec sheet. Ford already offers a hybrid six-speed stick Transit in Europe. All we know for sure is that Getrag-Ford has a brochure that mentions a seven-speed stick. One we certainly would love to see in a Bronco.