They may be among the shrinking minority, but members of the "save the manual" movement are a vocal bunch. That's why when Ford revealed the most off-road capable Sasquatch package for its new Bronco SUV without any word on a stick shift for the model, manual enthusiasts didn't hold back. "Give us manual with Sasquatch ðŸ™ ðŸ™ðŸ™" was just one of the countless petitions on social media proving this passionate group is not too proud to beg.
After pleas from enthusiasts and reservations holders alike, Ford has answered the call and announced it will be offering a 7-speed manual transmission in the Sasquatch off-road package for all two-door and four-door Bronco SUVs.
The beauty of the Sasquatch package is that its best off-road features aren't reserved for the top trims, allowing buyers to add more capability to every Bronco from the Base to the Badlands models. Standard on Bronco Wildtrack and First Edition models, the Sasquatch package outfits the adventure-ready 4x4s with 35-inch Goodyear mud-terrain tires, 17-inch wheels, front and rear electronic locking axles with 4.7:1 final drive ratio, high-clearance suspension position-sensitive Bilstein shocks, and wider fender flares.
According to Mark Grueber, Ford Bronco consumer marketing manager, this move is a direct response to customer feedback: “The Bronco community spoke and we heard them. Our team moved quickly to add Sasquatch with a manual transmission – another example of our focus on giving customers the best possible off-road vehicles and accessories that we can.”
By adding a manual option to the package, Ford sets the Bronco lineup apart as the only 4x4 with a 7-speed manual and 35-inch off-road tires. Not only does the manual satisfy those who like to row their own, but it also maximizing the Bronco's crawl ratio to 94.75:1, providing even more off-road capability across the line-up.
All Ford Broncos equipped with a manual gearbox will come with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost inline-four, which is expected to make 270 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Those not looking for a manual transmission can opt for a mightier 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 with a best-in-class projected 310 horses, and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. The two- and four-door Ford Bronco models go on sale next spring and the manual Sasquatch package will be available in late 2021.