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2022 Ford Bronco Everglades Review
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First Drive: 2022 Ford Bronco Everglades Review

Nifty snorkel and massive winch signal this Bronco craves mud and water. Canada Drives gets dirty in New Brunswick to put the new Everglades SUV to the test.

There are eight – count ’em – varieties of the Bronco, but only the Everglades is made for off-roader size mud puddles. Don’t let the name fool you – it pays tribute to that massive bog in Florida, but this water-baby is also tailor made for the boondocks of Canada. 

The Everglades is ready to take on our country’s best mud holes from sea to sea to sea, with a host of upgrades over the standard Bronco. Of course, if more heavy-duty upgrades for a serious off-road challenger is required, also read our 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor first drive review. 

Key Features:

  • 35-inch Goodyear mud terrain tires (with the “Wrangler” brand name removed, at the request of Ford), mounted on 17-inch rims. These allow for 29 cm (11.5 inches) of ground clearance. 
  • Handsome and super-functional made-for-Bronco snorkel, with reversing intake.
  • Raised vents for the front and rear axles, transfer case and transmission allow for up to 93 cm (36.5 inches) of fording ability. 
  • 10,000-pound Warn bumper-mounted winch is standard.

Direct Competitors:

  • Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 
  • Toyota 4Runner 
  • Land Rover Defender

What upgrades set the Bronco Everglades apart?

The Everglades comes equipped with the Sasquatch package, which includes front and rear locking differentials, 35-inch tires with 17-inch Beadlock gray-painted alloy wheels designed to look like steel wheels, 4.7 final drive ratio, heavy-duty Bilstein position-sensitive monotube shocks, and high-clearance fender flares. 

2022 Bronco Everglades | Photo: Ford Canada 

It also has rock rails and steel skid plates. And for those times when mud wins the battle, the Warn winch wins the war. The Everglades’ heavy-duty modular front bumper, safari bar and massive integrated winch can handle up to 10,000 pounds. 

A not-sure-we-love-it graphic on the front fender declares its water-worthiness. A heavy-duty roof rack and removable roof panels are also standard. 

2022 Bronco Everglades price and competitors

There is no question that the Everglades is one pricey vehicle – the second most expensive in the eight-model Bronco lineup. It lists in Canada for $79,599, plus delivery and tax – roughly $10,000 more than the Wildtrak, which has the superior 2.7-litre EcoBoost engine (315 horsepower and 415 lb.-ft. of torque). 

The Everglades only offers the 2.3-litre four-cylinder that produces 300 horsepower and 325 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s enough oomph to haul you through the bogs but seems a bit shy for highway cruising. The 10-speed automatic is the only transmission option, although a few other Bronco models offer a seven-speed manual.

2022 Bronco Everglades | Photo: Ford Canada 

Everglades vs the Wrangler, 4Runner, and Defender

The Everglades’ price is also a big jump over the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon ($49,645, plus delivery and tax) and Toyota 4Runner ($51,050, plus delivery and tax). Even the upscale Land Rover Defender is $10,000 less than the Everglades, starting at $69,000 in Canada. 

Yet the Everglades is a purpose-built vehicle with the extensive Sasquatch package that adds features that are either optional or aftermarket on competitors’ SUVs, or with capabilities the rivals can’t match. The Everglades’ fording depth, for example, is a full 16 cm (6.4 inches) better than the Rubicon (not that anyone is keeping track!). And a winch is an option or aftermarket item on the Rubicon. 

Inside the Bronco Everglades

The inside of the Everglades is . . . serviceable. Rubberized, hose-out flooring with drain holes is standard and the seats come in marine-grade vinyl. The Sync 4 interface, Ford’s latest, includes a 12-inch (diagonal) touchscreen and the infotainment system offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

2022 Bronco Everglades | Photo: Doug Firby 

The High and Lux interior packages are not available in the Everglades, and the base six-speaker sound system is the only audio offered. 

Performance & drive impressions

It’s hard to have more fun in the mud than you can with an Everglades. It is, quite simply, a blast to charge through bog holes that would leave other SUVs choking for air. It certainly elevates Ford's SUV lineup.

In New Brunswick’s backcountry, just past an ATV bridge barely wide enough to accommodate the Everglades, a menacing stretch of nearly waste-deep water dared us to take it on. “We’re going through that?” test drivers muttered. 

Thankfully, the Everglades doesn’t carry its name for nothing. Just choose “mud/ruts” from Ford’s G.O.A.T. (Goes Over Any Type of Terrain) seven mode options, and the Everglades automatically engages 4-High and locks the rear differential. Anything less than quicksand will yield to the blue oval.

2022 Bronco Everglades | Photo: Ford Canada 

As essential as that winch is, it gets in the way of a front-facing camera, and we miss it. Ford reps say they are working on a solution.

Verdict: is the Bronco Everglades worth it?

You can cover a lot of the same dry terrain as the Everglades with the less-expensive Outer Banks or Badlands. Yet, if you’re a confirmed swamp-monkey, there is no substitute for the upgrades on the Everglades that would cost you thousands of dollars on the aftermarket. 

The snorkel itself is a work of art, with its clever ability to intake air either from the front or rear of it by moving one simple plate. If you like to mess in the wet, this package is good-to-go straight out of the factory.

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