The Easter Safari event has been one that has always been synonymous with Jeep and some of the wild custom creations that the off-road brand would show to eager attendees. Ford wants a slice of the action and has revealed its plans to invade the 2021 Easter Safari with five different custom Broncos that aim to show Jeep that it’s serious about bringing the fight to the brand in the quest to achieve true off-road supremacy.
RTR Leads The Charge
To help facilitate this ambitious plan, Ford teamed up with RTR Vehicles (a firm better known for its Mustang-based builds,) ARB 4×4 Accessories, and 4 Wheel Parts, with the three firms each creating a full-size Bronco custom. Ford also brought along a build of its own with 4 Wheel Parts, creating a Bronco Sport build. We’ll focus on the three main builds here, which should draw Bronco fans’ attention everywhere.
In the case of RTR, they chose to base their creation off of a four-door Badlands model and adorned it with several custom exterior touches. They include a reworked rear bumper, custom rock sliders, and even a 3D printed front grille with what RTR calls “simulated accent lights” we wish they were the real deal.
But that minor quibble does little to detract from the rest of the presentation, and it’s apparent that RTR didn’t skimp on the details with the Bronco being equipped with 35-inch Nitto Ridge Grappler tires that are mounted onto RTR designed Tech-6 wheels. A Project X sourced lightbar helps light up the night while a custom wrap rounds out the changes and brings some extra flair to the Bronco.
ARB Custom Wears Vivid Blue Suit, Tailored Towards Camping
As is the case with the RTR sourced build, ARB’s interpretation of a Bronco also uses a four-door equipped Badlands model as its core platform. In contrast, the RTR Bronco is tailored towards extreme off-roading. The ARB Bronco tones it down a bit and instead goes for a more camping-focused approach. This Bronco features custom front and rear bumpers, which actually managed to be still compliant with the factory airbag system (a rarity in builds like this), heavy-duty rock rails, and camping gear designed to complement the build as well as a custom-built skidplate. ARB even added a rear-mounted refrigerator to help keep beverages ice cold during hot weather.
ARB also revealed that the whole thing from start to finish took several years of planning and hard work, with ARB USA President Doug Pettis revealing some of the efforts that took place behind the scenes in a brief statement.
“These accessories represent years of development and engineering collaboration with the Ford team to build parts driven by the Bronco SUV off-road heritage and styling.” He elaborated further, adding, “This design represents a practical yet capable vehicle that improves performance and enhances comfort off-road.”
Diamond’s Are a Bronco’s Best Friend In 4 Wheel Parts Custom Bronco
Unlike the other two firms, 4 Wheel Parts (4WP) chose to go in a unique direction with their custom Easter Safari build based on a Black Diamond edition Bronco. But don’t let the subtle connection to high-priced jewelry fool you; this particular Bronco is still capable of easily slaying your local off-road course. Arguably the most extreme of the bunch, 4WP claims that this particular custom embodies several key features created by the firm in-house. That includes the beefy front bumper, skid plate, and heavy-duty platform for the front-mounted winch.
4WP also takes credit for the custom suspension in a curious twist, which is paired with sick-looking 17-inch Method wheels and 37-inch BFG Mud-Terrain tires. That potent combination should allow this diamond to shine brightly on the wildest of adventures, especially in a wide range of terrain. Along with the potent performance enhancements, 4WP also gave the Bronco a custom roof rack and light mounts along with a roof-mounted tent from the folks at Smittybilt.
Will Everything Fall Into Place?
When Ford first unveiled the 2021 Bronco lineup, it promised a rather expansive pool of accessories with over 200 different items that customers could order. Much has happened since then, and with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic creating a true nightmare scenario in terms of supply shortages and other issues, it will be fascinating to see if all 200 of these items will make it into the inventory or if some of them could be impacted by COVID related delays.
Still, the appearance of all five of these customs indicates that Ford is still committed to its plan of going toe to toe with Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts (JPP) in the accessories arena. This off-road market sector has rapidly become a key profit generator for automakers, and while Jeep is currently the top player in the U.S., Ford’s aggressive approach could potentially allow it to steal the title away from Jeep, assuming that all the pieces fall perfectly into place.
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.