Ford is showcasing the breadth of its accessories catalog and the versatility of the new Bronco with a concept named Riptide. It gains a number of factory-backed modifications that turn it into a surfer-friendly beach-bound rig.
Painted in Velocity Blue, the Riptide started life as a four-door Bronco equipped with the Sasquatch package. It rides on 35-inch tires wrapped around the factory-style 17-inch wheels, but it features beadlock rings from the Ford Performance catalog. Ford also installed a mesh Bimini top from Bestop, and it replaced the standard doors with tubular units that let the air in. There's a Rigid LED light bar above the windshield and a Yakima bike rack out back.
While all of these add-ons are off-the-shelf components, the Riptide inaugurates two accessories that aren't available yet. One is a prototype steel front bumper fitted with fog lights and integrated tow hooks; it looks ready for production. The second is a simple attachment that lets users strap surf boards to the available sport bars.
Sitting on cloth or leather in a wet bathing suit can be disastrous, so Ford wrapped the seats with water-resistant, marine-grade vinyl upholstery. Rubber floor mats that can be washed with a hose help keep the cabin clean.
Power comes from a 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 that develops 310 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. Unmodified, it spins the four wheels via a 10-speed automatic transmission. Some of the best surf spots are hidden off the beaten path, and the Riptide helps surfers reach them with electronic driving aids like Trail One-Pedal Drive.
Nothing suggests Ford will offer buyers a factory-built surf-ready Bronco. However, most of the accessories used to build it are available through participating Ford dealers or from a number of aftermarket vendors; the Blue Oval notes buyers can even roll accessories into their financing. Plans to make the bumper and the crossbars available to the public haven't been announced, but we wouldn't be surprised to see them reach production sooner or later.