The headline for the Pick of the Day advertisement says simply: 1976 Ford Bronco for sale. But open the ad and you find something weirdly different, something that makes you squint your eyes and scratch your head and say, “What the what?”
Oh yeah, it’s a Bronco all right, at least mechanically, but one that has been transformed by Beijing Automobile Works into a 1997 BAW, according to the private seller in Phoenix who’s offering the strange beast on ClassicCars.com.
The chassis and drivetrain are totally 4X4 Ford Bronco, the seller says, powered by a 302cid V8, 3-speed manual transmission and some off-roading upgrades. But that Chinese body looks like an amalgam of Land Rover, Toyota Land Cruiser and Jeep CJ, put together into a unique and not-unattractive style.
The BAW is a BJ2020 series SUV, the seller explains in the ad, this one specifically a BJ2023S1. Not exactly a catchy name, but maybe it sounds better in Cantonese.
“It was created and built in conjunction with Russian off-roaders from UAZ,” the seller explains in the ad. “It debuted in 1965 as the Beijing BJ212. This is from the more-advanced BJ2020 Series.”
UAZ, by the way, was founded in 1954 in Ulyanovsk, Russia, to produce 4×4 vehicles, according to the Beaulieu Encyclopedia of the Car. The company builds 4X4s, trucks and buses for both the military and civilian customers.
This Bronco certainly would attract attention on the road or in encounters with other less-exotic off-roaders on the dusty trail. And just think of the reaction as you pull into the local Ford dealer for service. Although, easy availability of parts and service would be a major plus.
The body design looks pretty cool, and it has a Jeep-style removable soft top, windows and doors, and a fold-down windshield. The BAW’s off-road credentials are boosted by the kind of upgrades you might find on a regular Bronco, such as five “brand-new” 33-inch BFG Mud TA tires and a lift kit with suspension upgrades.
“Absolutely rust-free Arizona truck is very clean throughout,” the seller says, noting that it “also has original factory mud flaps, factory tire carrier, factory front and rear light grill guards, factory running boards, and a locking storage compartment in the rear.”
The mileage noted in the ad is just 13,500, but there’s no indication whether that is original. From the clean appearance of the truck, it very well could be. The only real clinker I see are the rumpled-looking seat covers, but they might be some aftermarket additions to protect the original seat upholstery.
The asking price for this highly unusual “Ford Bronco” is $31,500.
To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.