The decade-plus-long drought of there not being a compact truck from the maker of America's most popular full-size pickup has ended. Ford's back with a new-for-2022 Ford Maverick compact truck. The “flexible, fun and affordable" Maverick fills the company's longstanding compact-truck gap created when the auto and truck maker discontinued production of their ever-popular Ford Ranger in 2011 after a successful 28-year run.
While it's too early to tell how Maverick's popularity or longevity will measure up against Ranger's, Ford's generating some buzz right out of the gate, first with Maverick's MSRP at just under $20,000, and second, by positioning this newcomer in the compact truck category as having a bit of a rebellious streak with its stereotype-breaking equal parts of fun and practicality.
Ford Maverick | Ford
MAVERICK FAST FACTS
First and foremost, Maverick is a true compact track. Measuring just 200 inches long, 73 inches wide and 69 inches tall, compare that to Ford's full-size F150 pickup that maxes out at 250 inches long, 87 inches wide, and 80 inches tall for comparison. Maverick also:
- seats five
- hauls 1,500 pounds
- has front-wheel or optional all-wheel drive
- is powered by either a 2.5-liter hybrid engine or optional 2.0-liter with Ecoboost® paired with a continuously variable transmission or eight-speed automatic
- and has 13.8- or 16.5-gallon tanks
Looking at the dollars — because, often, that's where a lot of new-vehicle-purchase decisions begin and end — the Maverick's positioned affordably, beginning at $19,995 MSRP for the XL, $22,360 for XLT and $25,860 for the top-of-the-food-chain Lariat trim level.
Maverick XL highlights include an eight-inch, LCD touch screen center stack, 17-inch steel wheels, wireless hotspot and FORDPASS CONNECT™, which provides access to optional remote features such as start/stop and lock/unlock. Jump up to XLT level for 17-inch painted aluminum wheels, front bucket seats with what Ford calls unique Navy Pier/Medium Slate cloth and a cargo area that includes Ford's FLEXBED™ system — featuring a multi-position tailgate, numerous tie-downs and moveable slots for setting up bike racks, dividers and more. Lariat's notable features include the addition of 18-inch wheels, a 6.5-inch instrument cluster screen and power eight-way adjustable driver's seat.
A NEW GENERATION
Ford seems to be targeting younger buyers for Maverick, both with its price and descriptions of Maverick as “flexible, fun and affordable" and “breaking all the stereotypes" — alongside all “the technology you need." Admittedly, it does sound as though the party is wherever Maverick's at, with bottle openers built into its bed and compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Puzzlingly, Ford designers styled Maverick not only for a party, but also to party like it's the 1970's by including what their marketing materials refer to as an “ash cup/coin holder" and a “smoker's package (ash cup with element and socket)" under the “dealer-installed options" category.
Ford Maverick interior | Ford
SAFETY, POWER AND OTHER FEATURES
Safety-wise, the Maverick has all the requisite airbags, as well as TPMS, an anti-theft engine immobilizer, and an optional backup alarm. Additional safety features — branded under the Co-Pilot360™ Technology — include automatic high beams, pre-collision assist with auto emergency braking and rear-view camera, with available options of lane-departure warning, lane-keeping aid and BLIS® (Blind Spot Information System) with Cross-Traffic Alert.
Under the hood, the 2.5-liter hybrid churns out 191 HP while barely sipping gas to the tune of an impressive 42 mpg, while the 2.0 Ecoboost® delivers 250 HP, with an available towing package that maxes out at 4,000 lbs.
Several welcome additions inside the Maverick include standard rear under-seat storage, a space-saving rotary dial gear selector that replaces the traditional shifter column, a power sunroof and wireless charging.
The Maverick seems to be picking up where Ranger left off; albeit 11 years later. Only time and sales figures will tell if the Maverick will be just as popular as or even more popular than Ranger. Or perhaps Ford's been out of the compact truck game for too long now, and small-truck-buyer interest and loyalty have shifted elsewhere? At first glance though, it looks like there's a lot to love about this Maverick.
What do you think of the new Ford Maverick? Let us know in the comments.