The 1974 Ford Bronco is one of the most popular model years of classic Bronco. 1974 was nearing close to the end of
the first generation of Broncos, so it was considerably less rough around the edges as previous model years were.
Additionally, the competition from Chevy and AMC was growing steeper, so Ford had to do all they could to keep the
1974 Ford Bronco: The Most Popular Bronco?
Besides the attributes of the 1974 Bronco itself, its current popularity can also be attributed to the fact that is was the best
selling year of classic Broncos, selling over 25,000 units. After 1974, sales of the Bronco began to slump, so this
particular year is the first generation’s high-water mark of sorts. Because of their sales success, you are more
likely to come across a 1974 Bronco than other years.
Classic Broncos have become quite the hot vehicle, and their values are steadily rising. In 1974, the Bronco's starting price was $2,194 ($11,399 in 2019 dollars) and today it can be sold for prices reaching into the low $40,000s.
Even though the Bronco is an innately rugged vehicle, classic Broncos are around half a century old. It’s hard to
find a clean example of an original first-gen Bronco that hasn’t been meticulously restored or restomodded. For that
reason, clean 1974 Broncos are in many ways the golden Bronco specimen to track down.
A big reason for the post-1974 sales slump had to do with the tightening emissions requirements of cars and the OPEC
oil embargo. Several options were not sold specifically in California for this reason. The 200 c.i.d. I6 engine and
the 4.11 rear axle gearing weren’t offered there starting in 1974. Additionally, the 1974 Bronco is the last year
sold without a catalytic converter. That being said, any 1974 Bronco project will surely have to install one in
order to keep up with modern emissions requirements. Regardless, the Bronco’s engines were further detuned in 1975, so
the 1974 Broncos feel palpably stronger than their successors.
1974 Bronco Transmission and Gearing Info
There were minor changes to the 1974 Bronco, most of which had to do with the transmission. In order to keep pace
with the Bronco’s competitors like the Chevy Blazer and the GMC Jimmy, the three-speed C4 automatic transmissions
were offered for the first time in 1973. In 1974, most of the kinks with this transmission were ironed out, making it a more desirable Bronco overall. Below are the gear ratios for this transmission.
For the 1974 Bronco's manual transmission option, Ford used their 3.03 three-speed, which was the same transmission as
The 1974 Bronco came with a Dana 44 axle in the front, and a Ford 9-inch axle in the rear. The transfer case is a
Dana 20 with a low range gear ratio of 2.34:1. Below are the varying rear gear ratios offered on the 1974 Ford
The 1974 Bronco fixes a few minor issues that customers were reporting having with their transmissions. This mostly
entailed reworking the J handle shifting mechanism to make it less difficult to shift gears. In addition to this, a
lighted transmission gear selector was added on 1974 Broncos.
A few things were recent for the 1974 Bronco, but not entirely new. In addition to the C4 transmission, a Saginaw
power steering system was implemented on the 1973 Bronco. This combined with the C4 automatic transmission
contributed to the 1974’s strong sales figures.
1974 Bronco Engine Options
The oil embargo threw a wrench into Ford’s plans for the Bronco. 1974 was supposed to mark the beginning
of the second generation of Bronco, but those plans had were halted as to not run afoul of fuel efficiency
and emissions standards. This delay is visible in the second generation Bronco’s incredibly short lifespan. It only
lasted from 1978 to 1979, making it a difficult Bronco to track down.
The base engine offered on 1974 Broncos was the 200 c.i.d. engine (the same one that wasn’t sold in California), making
84 horsepower at
3,800 RPM and 151 pound-feet of torque at 1,800 RPM. All in all, these power figures are relatively underwhelming,
especially when held up to modern standards. But that being said, modern engines like the Coyote 5.0 fit like a
glove under the hood of a '74 Bronco.
Below is a list of the engines that were available on the 1974 Ford Bronco. Keep in mind that while some of the same
engines were sold throughout the Bronco's first generation, their power ratings aren't necessarily the same. Many of
the engines were detuned in the early '70s to keep up with emissions requirements.
First Gen Bronco Engine Options
||105 @ 4,400 rpm
||158 lb-ft @ 2,400 rpm
||84 @ 3,800 rpm
||151 lb-ft @ 1,800 rpm
||200 @ 4,400 rpm
||282 lb-ft @ 2,400 rpm
1974 Ford Bronco Dimensions
Here are the physical dimensions of the Ford Bronco. The overall shape and size of the Ford Bronco did not change throughout the first generation, so the following stats also apply to all other years of classic Bronco as well.
1974 Bronco Stats at a Glance
1974 Ford Bronco Paint Colors
Below is a list of the colors offered on the 1974 Bronco. Among these colors, Ivy Glow, Burnt Orange, Pastel Lime,
Village Green, Samoa Lime, Bold Orange, Sandpiper Yellow, and Gold Glow are all new colors for this year. Seapine
Green, Winter Green, Durango Tan, Royal Maroon, Bright Lime, Bahama Blue, and Tampico Yellow are all paint colors
that were discontinued for the '74 Bronco.
- Raven Black
- Wind Blue
- Chrome Yellow
- Wimbledon White
- Ivy Glow
- Sequoia Brown Metallic
- Midnight Blue Metallic
- Candyapple Red
- Limestone Green Metallic
- Light Grabber Blue
- Burnt Orange
- Hot Ginger Metallic
- Pastel Lime
- Village Green
- Samoa Lime
- Bold Orange
- Gold Glow
- Sandpiper Yellow
Sources: Automobile Catalogue | Classicbroncos | Bronco.com
Credit: Vanguard | Hagerty | Autotrader | Bringatrailer