PREVIEW: 2022 Ford Maverick
If there is a reason for Ford to introduce their own small pickup truck, it is their leadership in market. Their bread and butter will continue to be the F-Series. However, Ford always finds opportunities when the market calls for it.
That is why Ford developed the 2022 Maverick.
Not be confused with their “compact” car from the 1970s, this Maverick slots below the Ranger pickup truck in terms of size and capability. It is also Ford’s first unibody pickup truck.
We finally were able to experience this new small pickup truck at a regionak media event at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Our brief time with this newest member of the Ford truck family yielded plenty of impressions.
The Maverick was designed and developed as a pickup truck first. The 54.4-inch long bed offers no gimmicks. Just an easy load-in from the tailgate that can load up to 1,500 pounds. The bed is integrated with the four-door crew cab seamlessly. In all, it will not win any beauty contests or design awards, however it has a more useful design for every day tasks.
The crew cab itself offers a good front door egress, while the rear doors seem a bit small for some adults. Still, having the Maverick developed as a crew cab first is a sign of current market trends towards trucks being seen as family transportation.
Inside, there is room for four people. Realistically, you can count on at least four averaged-sized adults inside the Maverick. Our Lariat tester wore two-tone leather upholstery with the same color motif on the doors and the instrument panel.
The Maverick is based on the same platform as the Bronco Sport. Therefore, it shares the same instrument cluster design with a digital screen in the Lariat and a stand-alone infotainment pod. The controls are standard Ford fare, which includes the dial for the transmission. They are tactile and logical, including the multitude of controls on the steering wheel.
Our tester came with the 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid driveline. This is the standard driveline for the Maverick. It is only available in front-drive and offers 191 combined horsepower. Power is channeled through a PowerSplit continuously variable transmission.
It is a nice driveline that can deliver plenty of power that matches its light duty purpose. Our tester can only tow up to 2,000 pounds, which might be a bit light for a lot of jobs it could do.
In all, we found the driving experience to be quite nice. It is well behaved and managed rougher surfaces without a lot of feedback to the cabin. The steering is not as tight as we liked, with a turning radius of 40 feet. Yet, it is better than larger pickup trucks. Brakes were well composed with solid response from the pedal.
Pricing for the 2022 Ford Maverick starts at $19,995. There are three trim levels available with a choice of all-wheel drive along with a 250-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Our Lariat hybrid tester came with a sticker price of $29,340.
Currently, the Maverick has only one competitor – the Hyundai Santa Cruz. It offers a different kind of utility than the traditional pickup style of the Maverick.
The Ford Maverick may be seen as a lifestyle vehicle. However, it offers the opportunity for property utility, despite not having all of the numbers of a larger pickup truck. It works best for lighter duty work, while offering a truck-like experience for those looking for something affordable to own.
Story Credits: CarSoup Editors