‘America's first SUV'? Not really

‘America’s first SUV’? Not likely

The 12 months was 1965. The Beatles performed Shea Stadium. O.J. Simpson graduated highschool in San Francisco and joined the soccer crew at Metropolis School.

And in Dearborn, Mich., Ford Motor Co. introduced the Bronco, a automobile it declared to be “equally at residence on rugged mountain grades or on a run to the procuring middle.” Ford, in its typewritten press launch, coined a time period for its “go-nearly-everywhere, do-nearly every part” creation: “sports-utility automobile.”

Fifty-five years later, Ford is selling the revival of the Bronco as a return of “America’s first SUV.”

When Lynn Faeth, who owns an auto restore store in Fort Madison, Iowa, heard that, he laughed. Faeth’s enterprise, the Scout Connection, buys, sells and restores Worldwide Harvester Scouts. It additionally sells elements for the Scout, an off-road, four-wheel-drive automobile that went on sale in 1960 — 5 years earlier than the Bronco.

Members of Scouts West, an Worldwide Scout membership with three chapters in California, had the same response. “The fellows simply rolled their eyes at that,” stated the group’s president, Arnold Leos.

Ford’s historian Ted Ryan stated Ford benchmarked the Bronco in opposition to the Scout and varied Jeeps — which additionally existed earlier than 1965 — and labored to make sure the Bronco was higher on the street than rivals and versatile off-road, too. Ryan stated Ford seemed via the advertising and marketing supplies for competing automobiles and located phrases corresponding to “sporty” and “utility” however not “sports-utility automobile.”

So the Bronco grew to become the primary SUV by advantage of being the primary to declare itself an SUV.

“It is promoting, and like many advertisements, it isn’t as correct because it might be,” Faeth stated. “However I’ll give them the advantage of the doubt and say Scout was an SUV earlier than the time period was coined.”

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