Before the 1970s, you bought a truck to do truck things, and you got a bouncy steel box with simple construction, primitive interior, great durability, and road noise similar to that experienced by occupants of the Republic Thunderscreech. Sure, truck manufacturers would try to pitch their wares as offering luxury appointments, but nobody was fooled. By the late 1980s, though, the process of converting trucks into plush commuter vehicles was well under way, and Ford's Ranger-based compact SUV, the Bronco II, got this two-page-spread magazine ad for its second-to-last year of production.

2018 SUV buyers would run away screaming from an alleged luxury truck with 140 horsepower, two doors, and a manual transmission as standard equipment, of course. Recognizing the direction in which American vehicle-shopping tastes were heading even in the 1980s, Ford killed the Bronco II after 1990 and replaced it with the much larger and taller (yet still Ranger-based) Explorer.

Source: Autoweek

October 29, 2018