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Wednesday, 21 October 2020 18:49

Vintage Ford Broncos Being Rebuilt, Transformed---Into Something Like You’ve Never Seen

Written by Phoebe Wall Howard, Detroit Free Press
The 1966 Ford Bronco with a VIN of 000, left, and Gateway Bronco’s reimagined edition, that costs about $320,000. This original 1966 Bronco is the first to ever roll off the Ford production line. It was given to race car driver Carroll Shelby by Ford Motor Co. These images were taken Oct. 14 in Detroit. The 1966 Ford Bronco with a VIN of 000, left, and Gateway Bronco’s reimagined edition, that costs about $320,000. This original 1966 Bronco is the first to ever roll off the Ford production line. It was given to race car driver Carroll Shelby by Ford Motor Co. These images were taken Oct. 14 in Detroit. Junfu Han, Detroit Free Press

Index

After that 2016 road trip, Burgett talked to another company that does modern restoration about building him a Bronco. But the wait was too long and he was unimpressed.

 

So that's how a mechanical engineer who invented a heart surgery robot company (and sold it) and the Yurbuds sport headphone company for athletes (and sold it) ended up making cars. He points to his training at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, MO.

 

He planned to sit back and have family time. Now he's filling orders. The quality control required to manufacture low volume medical devices is now used to build Broncos.

 

Buyers have submitted about 130 orders since he opened his business in 2016. He has delivered about 65 vehicles so far to clients in the U.S., Canada and Spain. Orders have come in from New York, Florida, Texas, Michigan, Arizona, Colorado and California.

 

About 80% of the buyers are men and the vast majority of clients are 45 to 55 years old, and they are people who want vintage car experiences without vintage car repair bills and drama.

 

One in three buyers is the CEO of a public company while most of the rest are in private equity, real estate investment and venture capital. Money, basically.

 

While the pandemic shut down the company temporarily, as happened with companies around the country, orders have returned to an average of four a month with a production period of nine to 12 months.

 

That doesn't include the man who just called Burgett and asked if he could place an order in mid-October and have the Bronco delivered to their home in Hawaii to surprise his wife on Christmas morning.

 

"We can do that," Burgett told the Free Press with a smile during a visit to Detroit on Oct. 14, saying special orders come at a cost but just about anything is possible.


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