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Ford changes Bronco reveal date originally on OJ Simpson's birthday

Jordyn Grzelewski
The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co. has rescheduled the unveiling of the new Bronco SUV amid controversy over a previous reveal date that coincided with the birthday of the Bronco's most infamous passenger, O.J. Simpson.

"The reveal of the all-new Ford Bronco lineup will now happen on Monday, July 13," Ford spokesman Mark Truby said on Twitter Friday. "The previous targeted date of July 9 unintentionally coincided with O.J. Simpson’s birthday. We wanted to be sensitive and respectful of this concern."

The June 1994 slow-speed police chase of a white Ford Bronco, driven by Al Cowlings and carrying O.J. Simpson, was watched in real time across the world. Ford has moved the debut date of the new Bronco because the original reveal was planned for Simpson's birthday.

Ford recently announced the reveal date for the hotly anticipated SUV would be July 9. It was quickly pointed out that the date coincided with the birthday of Simpson, who in 1994 led police on a slow-speed chase as a passenger in a white Bronco. Simpson was facing charges in the murder of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman. Simpson was later acquitted.

Ford has said the timing of the original release date was coincidental.

The Bronco is one of Ford's most iconic nameplates. It was in production from the 1960s until it was discontinued in 1996. But even more than 25 years later, the off-road SUV has a cult following among car enthusiasts. 

Anticipation for the debut has been building for years; Ford confirmed at the 2017 Detroit auto show that the vehicle would be making a comeback. Ford dealers have reported huge interest among their customers for the new Bronco, which will be available in two- and four-door variants.

The vehicle will be built at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, the only plant where the Bronco has ever been built. 

Now, the world will finally get a look at the new design — on July 13.

jgrzelewski@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @JGrzelewski