Open bed, roll bar, vintage KC HiLiTES lights, and a shade of blue that makes us weak in the knees–this 1984 Bronco II is just the right amount of classic ’80s and American brashness that we look for when cruising through the Hemmings classifieds.
We all remember the 1980s: Ronald Reagan, Back to the Future movies, Teddy Ruxpins, Walkman tape players, and some questionable fashions that we’d sooner try to forget than remember. Back then, the cars and trucks coming out of Detroit were short on power but big on looks and style, and today, off-roaders are generally more mindful of power over aesthetics.
Fortunately, whoever was responsible for the build on this Blue Oval made sure to take care of both aspects (though the appearance can be a little jarring the more we see of it). Hailing from Wichita Falls, Texas, the Bronco II is well-maintained by the dealer Lone Star Muscle Cars, and looks ready to rock at a moment’s notice.
Gone is the end cap with its massive side windows and limited utility, and here instead is a sturdy four-point roll bar, drop-in bedliner, and custom spare tire mount. The truck appears to have been given a mild lift package to clear the wheels and tires, as well as custom tube bumpers to both the front and rear, with the front having a swell-looking brush guard and rectangular KCs.
The goods are under the hood, as they should be. Here, we find a small-block 302 V8 fitted in place of the stock Cologne V6s that were notorious for head failure and subsequent total destruction. Certain parts look quite old and rusty, but we’ll offer up the benefit of the doubt for having an engine bay that’s completely painted to match the outside.
Inside is where things get interesting. Here, we see the builder’s obsession with diamond plate steel, covering the floor, lower dashboard, and center console in gleaming metal that would wear out its welcome after a few weeks of driving, if that. The seats accommodate a five-point racing harness, so there’s that.
All in all, we like what we see, but what do you think? Let’s not forget the asking price–$15,988–is incredibly steep, and we have no idea what the rust or mileage situation is like. But hey, if you’re in the market for a piece of old-school off-road nostalgia, perhaps this short, stout, SUV is just what you’ve always wanted.