With an average value of about $90,000 right now, the first-generation Ford Bronco is one of the most “exotic” classic SUVs. And as such, we’re not surprised that it gets the same expensive restomod treatment as a Mustang from that era. But have you ever wanted to see a $230,000 custom 1968 Bronco? Wow, that’s a lot of money.
Now, to be fair, that’s not exactly expensive. Every Barrett-Jackson auction this year (Scottsdale, Palm Beach and Las Vegas) pushed the 1st gen Bronco past $200,000. The all-time record, I believe, was set by Big Oly at $1,870,000 in 2021.
The first Broncos were offered for the 1966 model year, and initially, three main body styles were available SUV, pickup, and an open-top roadster with no doors. But to slow sales, they dropped the roadster after 1968 and the pickup after 1972.
Today’s Bronco is all turbos and stuff, but the original came in four traditional flavors. Ford offered two affordable straight-6 engines, the 170 and 200 (2.8 and 3.3-liter) plus its two small-block V8s, the 289 and the 302 (4.7 and 4.9-liter). As restomods are becoming popular, people are retrofitting the latest Mustang 5.0-liter V8 into the 1960s classic. That’s right, this has a Coyote swap, paired to a 6R80 six-speed automatic transmission.
Bronco restomod build details
It’s so cool to open a hood built in 1968 and find the Coyote under there, along with a modern intake, exhaust, and the Wilwood master cylinder. The Gen 2 Coyote 5.0-liter is equipped with an aluminum KMF Stella oil pan, Kincer Chassis exhaust headers, and a custom exhaust system with a catalytic converter. Yes, I think this is California-legal because that’s where chassis number U15NLD26118 spent its last few years, although it’s now being sold by Vanguard Motors out of Detroit.
The 289 cubic-inch V8 would have been top dog when this 1968 Bronco was built, and it pushed 200 horsepower. The modern Coyote 5.0 makes closer to 435 hp and is easier to daily-drive.
On the chassis front, this Bronco has been equipped with an Atlas twin-stick dual-range transfer case, ARB air lockers on Dana axles, a suspension lift, four-wheel disc brakes, Hanson Offroad bumpers, and a Kincer roll cage for strength.
Orange is a difficult color to capture in photos, but this color looks suspiciously like Code Orange, which is something any Bronco fan will like. The 4×4 is selling with two sets of wheels, gray-finished 17-inch Wheelsmith steel wheels with chrome covers and some large replicas of period alloys, both wrapped with gigantic 35×12.50” Goodyear Wrangler tires.
The interior is also way nicer than a 1968 Bronco should be, boasting Bestop front bucket seats and a rear bench upholstered in gray vinyl, rubber floors, push button start, Alpine touchscreen infotainment system, and an Alpine audio system.