The Ford Bronco is one of the most highly anticipated SUVs that came out in the last decade or so as the Bronco brand name carries great significance in the world of Ford Bronco enthusiasts. One of the more surprising aspects of the new Bronco is that it is available both with a manual and an automatic gearbox.
This means that Ford envisioned the Bronco to be a true enthusiast’s car which is further exacerbated by the fact that you can get it in either 2-door or 4-door configurations and with up to 10 different trim packages. With such a wide array of choices, certain compromises had to be made which is why some versions of the Bronco experience more problems than others.
In this article, we are going to go over all of the Ford Bronco transmission problems and what you need to do to take care of them. To start off, the most common Ford Bronco transmission problems include loose bolts within the transmission, grinding while accelerating, shifting delays and hesitations, and the transmission refusing to go into gear.
Ford did do a few transmission-related recalls, the most important one was to combat the issue with loose bolts. All in all, the transmission isn’t the Bronco’s worst part as far as issues are concerned but it still isn’t one of the most reliable transmissions in Ford’s current lineup.
Loose Bolts Within the Transmission
One potential transmission problem that has been reported with the Ford Bronco is loose bolts within the transmission. Loose bolts can lead to a range of issues, including fluid leaks, improper shifting, and even complete transmission failure. While it is essential to note that this problem may not be widespread and could be limited to specific production batches or early models, it’s still important for Bronco owners to be aware of this potential concern.
Ford did issue a recall to combat this issue which included recalling quite a few Ford Bronco, Ford F-150, Ford Mustang, Ford Explorer, and Lincon Aviator models made between the 2022 and 2023 model year production run.
Grinding While Accelerating
There are a few sources stating that the grinding noises while accelerating are down to the aforementioned loose bolts within the transmission. However, there are also reports stating that this problem is actually due to a problem with a planetary gear system which is often mentioned with other Ford models using this transmission.
Either way, it’s best to take your Bronco to a dealership in order to find out what is exactly causing this problem as you don’t want to risk causing more damage to your transmission. Be sure to maintain it properly by replacing all the fluids when necessary and being relatively gentle while driving the vehicle.
Shifting Delays and Hesitations
Insufficient transmission fluid levels can affect the transmission’s hydraulic pressure, leading to shifting delays and hesitations. Checking the fluid level and ensuring it is at the appropriate level can help resolve this issue. If the fluid is low, it may indicate a leak that needs to be addressed. On the other hand, these problems can also be caused by worn-out clutch or torque converter systems.
Lastly, various other components within the transmission, such as sensors, valves, or gears, can contribute to shifting delays and hesitations if they are damaged, worn out, or malfunctioning. Identifying and repairing or replacing the affected components is necessary in such cases. To know what exactly the cause of these underlying problems is, take your Bronco to a Ford dealership.
Transmission Refusing to Shift into Gear
This problem is primarily associated with Ford Bronco manual transmissions, more specifically, the gear shift lever. The gear shift lever is located inside the passenger compartment of the Ford Bronco and is connected to the transmission via a linkage mechanism. This linkage mechanism allows the driver to shift gears by moving the gear shift lever.
However, if the linkage between the gear shift lever and the transmission is not properly adjusted, it can cause shifting to be difficult or even impossible. If the linkage is improperly adjusted, the gear shift lever may not be able to fully engage with the transmission, causing the gears to slip or grind. This can result in hard shifting into gear, meaning it takes more force than usual to shift the vehicle into gear.
Is the Manual Ford Bronco Better than the Automatic Ford Bronco?
It depends on your personal preferences, but it is rather obvious that most people driving modern-day cars are more likely to go for an automatic gearbox. This is made even more obvious by the fact that Ford doesn’t even offer an automatic gearbox for larger engines as the manual is only available for the entry-level 4-cylinder unit.
The automatic gearbox is quicker to engage gears and it is much easier to live with on a daily basis. If you are unsure about which one of these two you should go for, it’s best to test-drive both variants of the Bronco and then make a final decision.
Does the Ford Bronco Offer Low-Range Mode?
Yes, the Ford Bronco does offer a low-range mode both with a manual and an automatic gearbox which is to be expected from a true off-road model.
The low-range mode is typically associated with a two-speed transfer case. This feature allows the driver to switch between high-range and low-range gearing. In low-range mode, the gearing is multiplied, providing increased torque at the wheels, which is beneficial for traversing steep inclines, navigating through deep mud or sand, or crawling over rocks and obstacles at slower speeds.
Which Transmission is in the Ford Bronco?
The Ford Bronco uses either a 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission or a 7-speed manual transmission for the entry-level 4-cylinder engine model. The 10-speed is the preferred choice for a wide variety of customers while the manual transmission gives you the added ability to control the car’s shifting experience more precisely.
Depending on your preferences and engine choices, be sure to consider both as each has its own set of pros and cons.