1978 Ford Bronco NEC Auction

Rare 1978 Ford Bronco 4×4 ready for sale at British auction this weekend

1978 Ford Bronco NEC Auction This weekend will see a rare second-generation Ford Bronco making its way across the auction block. 

But this particular retro SUV is not for sale in the United States. Instead, it is being auctioned in the United Kingdom, as part of the 2019 NEC Classic Motor Show Sale arranged by SIlverstone Auctions.

It means British fans of American trucks have a rare opportunity to grab this in-demand full-size SUV, without the hassle of importing one.

1978 Ford Bronco NEC AuctionProduced for the 1978 and 1979 model years, the launch of the second-generation Ford Bronco was hit with several delays. The 1973 oil crisis saw full-size SUVs rapidly fall out of approval, with Ford pushing back the planned 1974 release date for the second-gen Bronco as a result. 

It meant that rivals such as the Dodge Ramcharger and Chevrolet K5 Blazer had already established a foothold in the market. Despite this, the second coming of the Bronco still proved popular. Buyers were happy to wait months to get hold of the three-door SUV.

The short production period has boosted the collectability of the second-generation Bronco, as has the anticipation for the new 2020 version.

1978 Ford Bronco NEC AuctionWhilst North America was the intended target for the second-gen Bronco, this particular example escaped across the Atlantic in April 1978. Ford UK shipped the Bronco to its Dunton Technical Centre, and registered it for use in the United Kingdom.

Fitted with the smaller 351-cubic inch (5.8-l) Cleveland V-8 engine, this Bronco left the factory with 156 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. A selectable four-wheel drive system is fitted, along with a four-speed manual transmission.

The Bronco was placed in dry storage between 1996 and 2019, meaning it has covered just 33,750 miles since new.

1978 Ford Bronco NEC AuctionAccording to the Silverstone Auctions, substantial amounts of paperwork are present to support the ownership of the Bronco by Ford UK. A subsequent transfer to Ford New Holland in 1991 is also covered by the included paper records. 

In 1998 the Bronco was sold to a former Ford employee, before finally becoming the property of the current vendor. 

Restoration work was started by the previous owner, and continued by the seller. The period correct Silver Metallic paint has been resprayed, whilst new leather has been added to the four seats inside. 

1978 Ford Bronco NEC AuctionOpportunities to buy a second-generation Ford Bronco in the United Kingdom are limited at best. It means the chance to hook one officially imported from new is likely to appeal to fans of American metal. 

The Bronco is being sold as part of two days of auction action during the 2019 NEC Classic Motor Show. Other vehicles crossing the block include a Jaguar XJ200 supercar, and a Mercedes-Benz previously owned by musician, Jay Kay.

Silverstone Auctions has estimated a sale price of £18,000 to £20,000 ($22,500 to $25,000) for the Bronco. The Ford UK provenance, plus the novelty of being an American retro SUV with a removable roof, should easily help it find a new owner.

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