The official Ford Bronco Instagram account dropped something interesting over the weekend in its Instagram story that got us curious. It also caught the attention of the rabid Bronco enthusiasts over at bronco6g.com.
According to the story, all 2021 Ford Bronco SUVs still at the manufacturing plant will get a new hardtop roof and will be shipping before the end of the year. This is music to the ears of those with outstanding orders, as the Bronco launch has been anything but smooth. Production delays and several issues with the Bronco’s molded-in color (MIC) hardtop supplier have led to much longer waits for vehicle delivery.
The MIC hardtop has been one of the biggest issues for Ford as it has tried to relaunch the iconic Bronco. Many of those who placed orders for the hardtop switched to the soft top option just to get their Broncos this year. Then some of those soft top owners complained about water puddling near the driver’s-side door.
So to say the roof issue is sensitive to the new Bronco owners is an understatement.
According to a story by Ford Authority: “Ford pushed back production of every modular hardtop variant to the 2023 model year. That includes black-painted hardtops, contrasting white hardtops, and dual top hardtops.”
Now, according that IG story, there could be a light at the end of the tunnel for the Bronco hard top models.
We reached out to Ford for more information about the IG story, and this is what Sam Schembari, Product Communications for Ford Motor Company said: “Parts are now available and customers can work with their dealers to receive and install their replacement hardtop on either a two or four door. When the customer receives their hardtop is dependent on each owner and when they schedule time with their dealer once the hardtop has arrived.” Shcembari went on to say that this Instagram interaction was part of a Ford customer satisfaction program that is currently underway.
The other intriguing part of Bronco’s Instagram story activity was offering to answer questions from followers. We’re curious how many questions they got, and how many Ford actually answered. Ford had three different Bronco employees answering specially chosen questions and posted the video answers live on their IG story. These have a short, 24-hour life, so if you’re interested in seeing the answers or if one of your questions got answered, head over to their IG account.
This Q&A format is an interesting way for Ford to attempt to be transparent. Obviously the majority of questions would not be answered and Ford I’m sure specifically chose to answer some questions while not addressing other questions. And we know this by monitoring the member posts at bronco6g.com who posted their questions and the answers they received. Yet, as of now, none of these questions made the cut as to what Ford put up on their IG story.
One forum member posted the question: “So are these the mic 2.0? Cause I have one and it’s already broken and leaking. Will these be better or more of the same?” He received the following answer from the Ford Bronco Instagram account: “Hello, James! Please send a message to us with your Bronco’s VIN and the name location of your Ford dealership, along with the details regarding the leak you’re experiencing. I’d like to assist. Thank you!”
Another member sent this question: “Soo mine was built 10/25 delivered 11/05 is it the old top or new? It doesn’t match and rattles like all hell.” And Ford’s response was: “Hi there – send a message to us with your VIN and the name location of your Ford dealership, along with some more details about your situation. I’ll look into this for you. Thanks!”
So responses, but not really an answer. We’d be really curious about Ford’s follow up here.
Truth be told, Ford has had several missteps along the way when it comes to the Bronco launch, but the automaker will likely resolve many of these issues with the 2022 model year. Ford did come out of its cone of silence when CEO Jim Farley began Tweeting out photos of some customers’ Broncos rolling through production. That was good PR, but was it enough to placate the masses?
Some of the issues have been out of Ford’s hands, and some have been Ford’s own doing. However, transparency and some mea culpas would help appease the hundreds of thousands of enthusiasts who have been quite patient, but whose patience is wearing thin.
With this Instagram stunt, Ford had a chance to be a little more transparent. Whether it was enough to smooth things over with the passionate-but-weary Bronco enthusiasts is hard to say.
I’m a huge fan of Instagram for things like this (follow me if you don’t already), but I’m afraid Ford missed a golden opportunity here. What would you ask Ford about the Bronco if you could? And if you asked Ford a question, did they answer? We’d love to hear about it in the comments below.