AUTO

Trump's attack on Ford reveals return of the Ranger and Bronco

2004 Ford Bronco Concept

2004 Ford Bronco Concept  (Ford)

Donald Trump has been riding Ford so hard about moving its small car production from Michigan to Mexico that you’d think he was trying to bust a Bronco.

Well…

Speaking to the Detroit News about the presidential candidate’s continued criticism of the automaker’s plan, Bill Johnson, the UAW plant chairman for the factory that is at the center of the switch, revealed the still-secret vehicles that the compact Focus and hybrid C-Max models are making way for.

Johnson told the newspaper that “Trump needs to get his facts straight,” and said that other automakers have already shifted less profitable small car manufacturing south of the border.

“We hate to see the products go to Mexico, but with the Ranger and the Bronco coming to Michigan Assembly that absolutely secures the future for our people a lot more than the Focus does,” he said.

The factory was the home of the Bronco from 1966-1986, and built trucks until a few years ago, when Ford started producing small cars there in conjunction with a $5.9 billion Energy Department loan for fuel efficient vehicles.

Ever since Ford announced it was bringing new vehicles to the facility, rumors have been swirling that they would be a new Ranger small pickup and a Bronco SUV based on it, but Johnson is the first person who likely knows for sure that’s said it out loud.

For now, Ford itself is sticking to its “we don’t comment on future product” line, but with the new Mexican factory set to open in 2018, it won’t be long before it does.