Ford has ruled out putting a V8 engine in the 2021 Bronco, so American tuner Hennessey will step in to fill the void. It announced plans to offer the off-roader with an eight-cylinder whose output nearly matches the GT500‘s.
Available with two or four doors, the Velociraptor Bronco will receive a 5.0-liter V8 topped with a 3.0-liter supercharger. Upgraded fuel injectors, a high-flow intake and a stainless steel cat-back exhaust will help raise the eight’s output to 750 horsepower, a significant increase over the standard model, which tops out at 310 horsepower from a turbocharged 2.7-liter V6. Hennessey pegs the SUV’s 0-60-mph time at 4.5 seconds.
Four-wheel drive and a 10-speed automatic transmission will come standard; it doesn’t sound like a manual transmission will be available. Off-road-focused suspension upgrades will be part of the package, too.
Bronco production won’t start until 2021, so Hennessey doesn’t have a functional prototype to show off yet. It nonetheless released a rendering that reveals the Velociraptor will get an air scoop integrated into a custom hood, a redesigned grille with the Texas-based tuner’s name, new-look bumpers on both ends and aluminum wheels wrapped by beefy tires. Photos of the cabin haven’t been released, but we’re told the Bronco will gain a custom interior with a numbered plaque, leather upholstery and embroidered headrests.
Hennessey plans to make 24 units of the Velociraptor Bronco for the 2021 model year, and pricing starts at $225,000 before shipping costs enter the equation, a figure that places the SUV deep into supercar territory. Sold through authorized Hennessey/Ford dealers, each example is covered by a three-year, 36,000-mile warranty.
Ford blamed its decision not to offer a V8-powered Bronco on emissions-related hurdles, which leaves the door wide open for aftermarket companies. Hennessey’s Velociraptor is the first such build, but it certainly won’t be the last. Jeep, on the other hand, strongly hinted it will shoehorn a V8 into the Wrangler — the Bronco’s arch nemesis.