Pickup vans are probably the greatest promoting autos in America. It’s straightforward to see why—they provide glorious visibility and unmatched utility irrespective of the place they’re pushed. However vans have gotten so bloated and costly that many patrons have chosen to go the route of the crossover as an alternative. However maybe not anymore.
The 2022 Ford Maverick is the most recent entry in various new compact utility autos aimed toward filling the truck-sized gap between crossovers like the brand new Ford Bronco Sport and mid-size pickups just like the Ford Ranger or Chevrolet Colorado. With a beginning value of round $20,000 and a typical hybrid powertrain providing as much as 40 miles per gallon, the Maverick is rapidly working to safe its future house in each suburban driveways and on metropolis streets.
It was practically a decade in the past that Ford cancelled the mid-size Ford Ranger to focus efforts on its best-selling F-150. Since then, it not solely introduced the Ranger again to life, but additionally launched this model new compact pickup, the Maverick, primarily based on the Bronco Sport slotted immediately beneath it.
The Maverick is much from a standard truck. For proof, merely look beneath the hood and also you’ll discover a hybrid powertrain which makes use of an electrical motor to energy the truck at the side of its gasoline-powered 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. The pair ship 191 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque and sends energy to the wheels through a constantly variable transmission (CVT). This mix isn’t one thing which most conventional truck patrons are speeding out to purchase, but it comes normal on the Maverick—and that’s as a result of the Maverick isn’t meant for conventional pickup patrons. Ford says this powerplant is able to reaching round 40 MPG within the metropolis, a determine comparatively remarkable for a truck. That’s comparable with the Honda Civic!
Nevertheless, there’s a catch—the hybrid is simply obtainable in front-wheel drive, and isn’t significantly suited to towing greater than 2,000 kilos due limitations from the CVT transmission.
To make their rig extra succesful, patrons have the choice of upgrading to the non-compulsory 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine, a turbocharged engine which produces a extra brawny 250 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque. This additionally outfits the truck with an eight-speed computerized transmission and offers the choice for patrons to improve from front-wheel to all-wheel-drive. With the non-compulsory 4K Tow Package deal, the truck receives a transmission oil cooler, upgraded radiator, gearing adjustments, and extra—all of which permits it to double its towing capability as much as 4,000 kilos.
All Mavericks shall be provided in the identical physique configuration: a crew cab with a 4.5-foot mattress in every of its three trims—XL, XLT, and the top-tier Lariat.
A truck of a special colour
From the surface, the Maverick might be configured to mix in with the gang or stick out like a sore thumb—a nod to the youthful patrons Ford hopes to draw with the compact pickup. A complete of 11 completely different paint jobs can be found relying on the trim, together with various enjoyable Ford hero colours like Velocity Blue, Speedy Pink, and Cyber Orange.
The bodywork stays largely the identical all through the lineup. Design language is trendy with smooth physique traces all through all the exterior bundle, all whereas sustaining a glance instantly recognizable as a Ford. Nevertheless, there are some refined design adjustments to the truck relying on the trim, corresponding to adjustments to the grille, wheels, mirror caps, headlights, and extra. Patrons who decide to equip the FX4 off-road bundle will see extra adjustments, like uncovered entrance tow hooks and particular 17-inch wheels with all-terrain tires along with the extra hidden suspension modifications and underbody safety.
In fact, a very powerful a part of any pickup is the cargo field, one thing which Ford retains extraordinarily sensible on the Maverick. It’s referred to as the Flexbed, and the title is becoming given how versatile it may be for almost any job.
The 4.5-foot mattress isn’t the largest pickup field in the marketplace, and it wasn’t meant to be. Nonetheless, it may maintain as much as 1,500 kilos or a four-by-eight foot sheet of plywood. As an apart, the highest of the mattress is trimmed with plastic mattress rails to keep away from scratching the Maverick’s loudly-painted physique as cargo is loaded and unloaded.
When folding the tailgate flat, the mattress extends to 6 ft of usable space, and Ford has various further equipment to maintain kayaks and different giant objects mounted in place. Wider objects generally is a bit trickier, as a result of the truck’s general footprint is considerably narrower than its bigger brethren and the wheelhouses nonetheless take up some room. Due to this, Ford added an extra place for the tailgate which raises the lip by resting it at an angle. This brings the resting place to the identical top because the wheelhouses, that means a big sheet of plywood can sit flat.
There are a number of further get together tips corresponding to sliding inside mattress rails, a small in-bed cubby for an additional little bit of storage, an influence outlet, a mattress mild, and a bottle opener constructed proper into the tailgate.
The inside can also be fairly snazzy. Each floor incorporates trendy angles and design cues, whereas some modern materials traces the material seats and dashboard components. Door playing cards sport a neat geometric sample, and the seize deal with makes use of a floating design to look futuristic. Inside plastics are largely a shade of blue, a flashback from traditional vehicles, although sure add-on packages will add enjoyable accent colours like shiny orange to the combination.
Pickups historically endure from an absence of dry lockable storage given the shortage of a trunk. Due to this, inside storage and the group thereof comes at a premium. Ford maximizes on this within the Maverick, including nooks and cubbies nearly in all places clean area would have been discovered. Even the rear seats are used as storage units—as soon as the bench is flipped up, completely segmented under-seat storage bins are discovered, that are helpful for securing and stashing away cargo that drivers gained’t need rolling round on the ground.
[Related: The Ford F-150 Lightning is an electric vehicle for truck lovers]
This mid-size pickup market appears to be simply being tapped by automakers. As of now, the one different producer to announce a possible competitor is Hyundai. Its upcoming Santa Cruz is concentrating on comparable younger patrons who reside in cities or different markets the place a standard full-size pickup is likely to be desired, however merely isn’t perfect.
Ford says the Maverick will begin at a base value of $19,995 earlier than vacation spot expenses. Most patrons will probably swing for the middle-of-the-road XLT (which is priced at beginning at $22,280) because it features a myriad of primary options that the XL merely doesn’t have—energy mirrors and cruise management to call two very primary ones. Even absolutely loaded, the top-tier Lariat might be geared up with the extra highly effective 2.0-liter turbocharged motor, all-wheel-drive, and each obtainable choices bundle for simply north of $36,000. That’s nonetheless fairly inexpensive, particularly for a pickup truck. The 2022 Ford Maverick is ready to land on vendor tons starting this fall.