Off-road vehicles have become increasingly popular in recent years, with the Jeep® Wrangler and Ford Bronco being two of the most popular options for buyers. Although the Wrangler has long been considered the top player in this market, a closer analysis of the Q1 2023 sales figures reveals that the Bronco is gaining ground on its rival.
During this period, Ford sold 32,430 units of the Bronco, representing a significant increase of 37.6% from the same period in 2022. This growth was primarily attributed to the conquest of about 60% of substantial buyers from the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee. Additionally, Ford reported that the Bronco family is attracting more female buyers, accounting for 31% of retail sales. So it appears that the Bronco isn’t just gaining market share but expanding its demographic reach.
In contrast, Jeep sold 37,971 units of the Wrangler during the same period, down by 17% from last year’s sales figures. However, the Wrangler 4xe, Jeep’s plug-in hybrid (PHEV) variant of the Wrangler, experienced a 72% increase in total U.S. sales compared to last year. The 4xe accounted for 38% of Jeep Wrangler sales in Q1 2023, making it the best-selling PHEV in the country. An indication that while the Wrangler may be experiencing a decline in overall sales, the introduction of PHEV technology is helping to maintain its competitive edge.
Despite the Wrangler outselling the Bronco overall, the Bronco is gaining ground on the Wrangler. This trend could be attributed to the Bronco’s fresh design and Ford’s aggressive marketing strategy. Additionally, the Bronco’s appeal to a broader demographic could be helping it to chip away at the Wrangler’s dominance. However, with the recent introduction of the more refined 2024 Wrangler, Jeep could be poised to regain some of the ground it has lost to the Bronco. Only time will tell.