Ford Bronco® vs. Jeep® Wrangler as Off Road Vehicles

Two of the most popular 4×4 off-road vehicles on the market are Ford’s updated and modernized remake of its beloved Bronco® and the ever-popular and ubiquitous Jeep® Wrangler. Both are readily available to the market—whether new or used—and offer a host of available original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and aftermarket accessories that make customization and personalization a breeze. Many off-road enthusiasts consider the Ford Bronco and Jeep Wrangler to be two of the best 4x4s on the market for overland exploration. Whether rock crawling, mud bogging, trail running, or desert exploring the Bronco and Wrangler are two best-in-class offerings in the 4×4 off-road vehicle segment.

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To find out more about the Ford Bronco and the Jeep Wrangler, continue for a detailed analysis of each vehicle, including highlights of some of the key features and benefits that will enable one to choose which model will best suit their intended type of off-road adventure.

Using a Ford Bronco Off Road

A blue jeep on a dirt road

Until recently, the Ford Bronco was a ghost from the past, owned by vehicle collectors or those who may have purchased one during the vehicle’s original heyday from its inception in 1965 through the last Bronco model that rolled off the production line five generations later in 1996. The model quickly gained notoriety and a cult-like following among adventure seekers. However, as consumer preferences continued to evolve in the mid-90s, Ford decided to end production of the Bronco, and the model disappeared from the market and became a coveted item for collectors.

Fast-forward to 2021. Thanks to the continued growth in the off-road segment, Ford saw an opportunity to resurrect its beloved—albeit absent-from-the-market—Bronco in a modernized version that maintained its original DNA and styling but added modern design, technology, and comfort amenities. With the sixth generation Bronco rolling off the production line in 2021—much to the delight of Ford fans and 4×4 enthusiasts alike—the vehicle has quickly become a popular addition to the 4×4 vehicle segment.

Key features and benefits the new Bronco offers:


Safety features on the Ford Bronco include:

  • Front-Impact, Side-Impact, and Overhead Airbags
  • 360-Degree Camera with Offroad Views
  • Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB)
  • Terrain Management System (TMS) with 10 G.O.A.T. Modes
  • Tactically Located Passenger Grab Handles
  • BLIS® (Blind Spot Information System) with Cross-Traffic Alert
  • Lane-Keeping System
  • Hill Descent Control™
  • Rear View Camera With Backup Assist
  • Auto High-Beam Headlamps With Windshield Mounted Camera


According to Ford, the Bronco measures 190.5 inches long (15.9 feet), 76.3 inches (6.3 feet) wide, and 79.3 inches (6.6 feet) high, which is nearly 24 inches longer than the Jeep Wrangler. Gross Vehicle weight ranges from 5,540 to 6,160 lbs., making the Bronco roughly the same weight as the Jeep Wrangler. 

Additional specs on angles and clearance: The Bronco 2-door has an approach angle of 43.2 degrees, a breakover angle of 29.0 degrees, and a departure angle of 37.2 degrees. The 4-door model has an approach angle of 43.2 degrees, a breakover angle of 26.3 degrees, and a departure angle of 37.0 degrees. Base ground clearance on the Bronco is 8.3 inches before adding additional features.

Off-Road Capability

The sixth generation Bronco includes what Ford dubbed “G.O.A.T. Modes™” (Goes Over Any Type of Terrain), providing ten unique settings for specific conditions. Modes include Sport, Eco, Normal, Slippery, Sand/Snow, Mud/Ruts, Rock Crawl, Baja, Tow/Haul, and Offroad. To change modes, one only has to turn the G.O.A.T. Modes dial inside the cab and choose an appropriate setting for the terrain. The system allows the Bronco to be as user-friendly as possible, allowing users to tackle almost any terrain and condition. Other key features that help improve and simplify the off-road capabilities of the Bronco include “Trail Turn Assist,” which delivers a tighter turning radius, Ford “Trail Control” off-road cruise control mode, and “Trail 1-Pedal Drive,” a feature that allows the gas pedal to control both acceleration and braking. The Bronco took a page from other popular 4x4s such as Toyota and went with a Independent Front Suspension. This setup tends to be preferred by high speed desert racing enthusiasts for its ability to quickly adapt to changing terrain.  

Price and Value

According to Ford, the Bronco has an MSRP that starts at $34,890 and goes up from there, depending upon the model and trim package, which makes the price slightly higher than the Jeep Wrangler. With the Bronco being such a hot commodity, they may be more challenging to find and more susceptible to market value price fluctuations.

Using a Jeep Wrangler Off Road

A jeep on a dirt road in a canyon like setting

Unlike the Bronco, which ceased production in 1996 and disappeared from the market until 2021, the Jeep Wrangler has been in non-stop production since its inception in 1987, having been rebranded from the CJ or Civilian Jeep that drew its lineage from the iconic World War II Jeep. As a result, the Wrangler has become one of the world’s most iconic and recognizable 4×4 vehicles. The Wrangler has continued to evolve and improve with each new model year, adding technology and comfort features that have helped modernize the model. And because the Jeep Wrangler has been in production so long, it has one of the most significant followings with recreational enthusiasts and aftermarket brands that produce many products for the model.

Key features and benefits the Jeep Wrangler offers:


  • High Strength Steel Frame Maximizes Crash Protection
  • Front-Impact and Side-Impact Airbags
  • Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Path Detection
  • Forward Collision Warning with Active Braking
  • Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop and Go
  • Automatic High-Beam Headlamps
  • ParkSense® Rear Park Assist System
  • ParkView® Rear Back-Up Camera
  • Durable Windshield with Corning® Gorilla® Glass
  • SOS Button for Emergency Services Access


According to Jeep, the Wrangler measures 166.8 inches long (13.9 feet), 73.9 inches (6.2 feet) wide, and 73.6 inches (6.1 feet) high. Gross Vehicle weight ranges from 5,000 to 6,100 lbs., making the Wrangler close to the same weight as the Ford Bronco. However, the Wrangler is nearly 24 inches shorter in overall length.

Additional specs on angles and clearance: The Wrangler 2-door model has an approach angle of 44.0 degrees, a breakover angle of 27.8, and a departure angle of 37.0 degrees. The 4-door model has a breakover angle of 43.9 degrees, a breakover angle of 22.6 degrees, and a departure angle of 37.0 degrees. The base ground clearance of the Wrangler is 9.7 inches before adding additional features.

Off-Road Capability

The Jeep Wrangler continues to evolve, including new off-road features that make it even more capable of going to extreme locations. Standard features like high air intake location and sealed electrical connections mean the Wrangler comes ready to traverse water up to 33.5 inches deep. The Wrangler offers three unique 4×4 systems: the Command-Trac® Part-Time 4×4 System, Selec-Trac® System that automatically switches to two-wheel drive on clear roads, and Rock-Trac® System designed for pure off-road performance. Front and rear Tru-Lok® electronic locking differentials lock and evenly distribute power for even better traction. Some Wrangler models, like the Rubicon, include Jeep’s Off-Road+. This button lets users quickly adjust shift points and set traction control levels on the fly for better performance. 

Because it was built for off-roading, the Jeep Wrangler also comes with OEM skid pans that protect critical components such as the gas tank, transmission, and transfer case, whereas on Bronco, this comes at an additional cost. While everything in the industry has moved to independent front suspension, Jeep has committed to continuing to build solid axel front end vehicles as the performance of that type of suspension is what makes it so capable offroad. The solid axle is superior for traversing mountainous terrain found in areas such as the Rocky Mountains of Colorado and the challenging trails of Moab, Utah. 

Price and Value

According to Jeep, the Wrangler has an MSRP that starts at $31,195 and goes up from there, depending upon the model and trim package, which is $3,695 less than the lowest-priced Ford Bronco. Jeep Wrangler models tend to hold a high resale value because of their popularity and with so many in the market. 

One of the best features, in our opinion, is Jeep teamed up with onX Offroad to provide Jeep owners with 2021 or newer vehicles with six months of free Elite access to the onX Offroad App.

Is the Bronco or Jeep a Better Off-Road Vehicle?

A Ford Bronco with a Jeep Wrangler parked behind it

Determining which is the better off-road vehicle for you is a difficult question to answer, as these types of decisions are subjective in nature. Are you a Ford fan? Maybe you’re a Jeep fan? Both are legitimate reasons to choose one over the other. But one thing is certain: both are worthy vehicles for the discerning 4×4 enthusiast. Both offer performance and personalized accessories, including the technology and comfort amenities one expects in a modern vehicle. Choosing one over the other depends on the features and benefits that matter most to you. Only then can you decide if the Ford Bronco or Jeep Wrangler is the right model for you.


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Dale Spangler

Dale Spangler is a lifelong motorcycle enthusiast introduced to two wheels at the age of eight and began racing motocross at 12. After chasing his dream of being a professional motocross racer through the mid-90s, he moved on to a career in the powersports industry, where he’s spent the last 28+ years as a marketing specialist, writer, and content creator.