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HomeThe MarketFord unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model

Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model

Our occasional roundup of new car news and notes

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It will cost you in the “mid-$200,000 range,” but Ford plans to produce 50 examples of the Baja-ready 2023 Bronco DR, the company announced. DR is short for Desert Racer. Ford says the SUV will be ready to compete in events such as the Baja 1,000 with Multimatic suspension and a 5.0-liter Coyote V8 engine rated to more than 400 horsepower.

The vehicles will be available in late 2022, Ford said, adding that the new ones pay homage to the Bronco that Rod Hall and Larry Minor drove to victory in the Baja 1,000 in 1969, the only 4×4 ever to claim overall victory in the historic race on Mexico’s Baja California peninsula.

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal

Compared to the 4-door Bronco Badlands model, the DR will offer 55 percent more front suspension travel and 58 more at the rear. Approach, breakover and departure angles also are increased. 

The DR models will be equipped with a full safety cage, two racing seats and data acquisition systems. 

Mercedes-Benz launches 7th-gen SL

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
SL 63 (left) and SL 55 versions of the new Mercedes-Benz 2+2 | Daimler photos

The seventh-generation of the Mercedes-Benz SL has been unveiled in the form of the Mercedes-AMG SL, which features a new chassis, AMG active-ride control, rear-axle steering, new aerodynamic control devices, and a 585-horsepower 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine. 

A 476-horsepower biturbo V8 Mercedes-Benz SL 55 model also debuted, with the automaker also announcing that a hybrid powertrain for the roadster is in development and will be launched at a later date.

For the first time in the SL’s 70-year history, the roadster, in its AMG SL 63 version, can be equipped with all-wheel drive, AMG Performance 4Matic+. 

The new SL gets 2+2 seating covered by a convertible rather than retracting metal roof. Mercedes said the car’s enlarged interior is “hyperanalogue,” combining “analogue geometry and digital world.”

BMW opening Indy driving experience

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
You can drive a new BMW around the Indy speedway | BMW M Driving Experience Center photo

BMW of North America has announced a new BMW M Driving Experience Center based at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where classes will be taught with students driving on the Speedway’s tracks. The program and its new facility, located with a view of the track’s Turns 3 and 4, is scheduled to open in July, 2022, BMW said.

Bentley touts renewable fuel drive

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid encounters spectacular scenery on its renewable-fuel drive across Iceland | Bentley photo

Bentley said its Flying Spur Hybrid, which goes on sale in 2022, posted a 45 percent reduction in CO2 emissions on its recent drive across Iceland using second-generation renewable fuel and geothermally produced electricity. The drive covered 455 miles with Bentley proclaiming “best of both worlds… useable electric range combined with genuine grand touring reach.”

Bentley said its second-gen biofuel is produced from agricultural waste materials.

VW, Oak Ridge working on wireless charging

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
Device on garage floor designed to recharge electric vehicles without connecting cable | Volkswagen photos

Volkswagen and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have announced a joint research effort to test new wireless charging for electric vehicles. 

According to the announcement, Oak Ridge has been working with a Porsche Taycan EV using focused electromagnetic waves with 98 percent efficiency.

“Our unique polyphase electromagnetic coil design and power electronics provide high power transfer levels in a compact system, with the potential to alleviate electric vehicle range anxiety and speed the decarbonization of the U.S. transportation sector,” Xin Sun, associate laboratory director, is quoted.

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
New Aston Martin / Girard-Peregaux timepiece | Aston Martin photo

Aston Martin launches a chronograph

It’s not a new car but a chronograph being launched by Aston Martin and Girard-Peregaux.

The dial of the Laurenato Chronograph Aston Martin Edition shares the green shade featured on Aston Martin racing cars, the partners said in their announcement.

The companies said only 188 examples of the watch are being produced for world-wide distribution.

Pricing to be announced.

Kia debuts new Sportage

Bronco, Ford unveils Baja-ready Bronco DR model, ClassicCars.com Journal
Kia says its new Sportage breaks the mold of bland SUVs | Kia photo

Calling it “a welcome addition in a sea of bland-looking subcompact SUVs that crowd today’s market,” Kia has launched its new and fifth-generation Sportage, the South Korean automaker’s longest-running model. 

In addition to its exterior design, the new Sportage has a curved 12.3-inch display screen on its dashboard, more interior room, and an additional 1.5-inches of ground clearance when equipped with all-wheel drive. It also has a new 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine and new 8-speed automatic transmission.

Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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