Last week, we published new Bronco prototype images, but not without consequence.
Among the entire TFL team, our firm editorial position is to present you all with as much timely and accurate information as we possibly can. We have a tagline to that end: “You saw it here first at The Fast Lane Truck”. In all the anticipation and excitement — those on our team included — leading up to the 2021 Ford Bronco, we published new photos we had received last week. Like us, we know many of you out there want to know as much as you can about the upcoming Bronco, especially if you’re thinking about buying one.
The images we published came from an anonymous source, which shared them with TFL. As we have stated before, this is unofficial information based on a prototype. We all still need to see the actual Bronco be unveiled in order to learn the official details.
While we were successful in bringing you the information we received quickly, this video (seen above) and its corresponding post on TFLcar.com didn’t come without consequence. Shortly after we published the news, we received notice from a Ford spokesperson that we had been summarily disinvited from the official reveal for the 2021 Ford Bronco and the 2021 Ford F-150. These are both hugely important reveals this year, but with this turn of events we will not be able to cover them as originally intended.
Some of you already know this through watching another video we posted this past weekend (below), but we also wanted to let you all in the TFL community know what happened and why.
More context on the situtation
Any automaker wants to keep tabs on what information’s coming out regarding their upcoming models as much as possible. After all, part of the marketing push for these new models is the hype that surrounds its debut, and that drives interest into the eventual product launch. In a sense, showing off major points of a new model early can impact the messaging an automaker has invested in and is working to cultivate leading up to the reveal event. The Tesla Cybertruck is a great case in point, because we had little knowledge of what it would ultimately be before Elon Musk brought it on stage last year.
Ford’s response to our coverage of the 2021 Bronco came as we shared the information we received before the company’s public relations team was ready to publicize it. Our decision to publish those photos drove Ford’s decision to bar TFL from Ford events, at least for the foreseeable future. That said, our editorial responsibility is to you, the TFL community our team has worked to serve for the past decade. As managing editor of The Fast Lane Truck, I have a duty to you all to report as much accurate information as I possibly can because you have the right to be informed.
This latest round of photos provided even more credibility to other information we reported in late May, which is why our team collectively made the decision to bring it to you.
TFL needs your help!
If you’ve wondered what it’s like working in this industry, this situation provides some insight into TFL’s working relationship with automakers. The manufacturers “hold the keys to the kingdom,” as we’ve said, by providing trucks to journalists and inviting them on press events (pandemic-related delays notwithstanding). In our coverage, we aim to be transparent in letting you guys know that companies invite us to those press events, and indeed provide new vehicles for us to review as part of that working relationship.
The whole TFL staff believes in our journalistic responsibility to present accurate news, unbiased reviews and real-world reviews, and we’ve gotten hundreds of e-mails throughout the years that you have taken our reviews into account when buying a new car or truck. That means more than anything to our team, and we wanted to take what would otherwise be a negative ordeal and turn it into something more positive.
To do that, though, we need to hear from you. If our reviews helped you make your decision when buying your new car or truck, we want to know! We’re using our Instagram pages (@tflcar and @tfltruck) to see what you guys bought after seeing our reviews.
To be clear, we’re asking for owners of any make and model — it doesn’t have to be a Ford. Any and all are welcome to chime in, but we do have a few instructions:
- Please post a photo of yourself next to the vehicle you bought to Instagram (or your other favorite social media platform) and mention TFLcar (@tflcar) or TFLtruck (@tfltruck)
- Tell us when you bought your vehicle (again, it can be a car or truck!)
- Tag the manufacturer of your car (@chevrolet, for example)
- Use the hashtag #thanksTFL so we can keep tabs on who responds!
Thank you for your support
At the end of the day, TFL Studios only exists because of your support. Whether it’s directly through PayPal, Patreon, or watching our videos on YouTube, every little bit helps keep us operating as independent media bringing you news, views and real-world reviews. Thank you for everything you do to help us out and, if you decide to participate in the Instagram call to action above, telling us more about your buying experience!