Ford Maverick compact truck debuts as affordable entry-level model
The Ford Maverick compact truck is a long-awaited launch and its birth was triggered by a trend. In the past couple of decades, we have seen monocoque crossovers gain ground over old-school ladder-frame based SUVs. With the arrival of the Maverick, Ford is looking to shake up the U.S. pickup truck segment, even if past attempts at crossover pickups by Honda and Subaru produced a lukewarm response.
The Ford Maverick joins a new segment of compact monocoque-bodied pickup trucks. We saw it with the larger Honda Ridgeline and the Subaru Baja, and the recently launched Hyundai Santa Cruz, the latter being the Maverick’s prime nemesis. But unlike the Santacruz that adopts an edgy design from the Tucson, hiding none of its crossover roots, the Maverick brandishes a slightly tougher design, a trait of Ford’s pickup lineup. The large headlights and the turn indicators inside them may put some fans off though. It is 280 mm shorter than the Ranger, the closest member of its Ford family. Only available in crew cab style, the Maverick gets a 4.5-foot long cargo deck.
The engine options on the Maverick include a 2.5-litre hybrid engine, shared with the Escape Hybrid, which also shares its front-wheel-drive chassis to the Maverick, albeit stretched. This powertrain creates 191 hp while sipping just 5.88 litres/100 km. A CVT channels the power to the front wheels, and no AWD is available with this engine. Stepping up the game is an optional EcoBoost 2.0-litre engine from the Bronco Sport. With this mill, the Maverick is good for 250 hp of power and 376 Nm of torque, while being attached to an eight-speed transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard while an all-wheel-drive option is also on the list.
A utilitarian dashboard design is livened up with the use of bronze accents inside the Maverick. Several storage spaces and upright design fits the character of the truck. There are several slots littered around the cabin as a part of the Ford Integrated Tether System (FITS) for attaching removable accessories. The port geometry will be made public by Ford, helping people create their custom accessories. There are larger slots on the rear armrests, for neatly tucking in the tyre of a mountain bike, keeping it upright with no tethers. The loading bay is versatile too. It comes with numerous adjustments and nifty features to segregate the cargo, load larger items and secure them in place.
Ford Maverick gets Ford’s Co-Pilot360 Assist suite as an option, with blind-spot monitoring and lane-keep assist. It also comes with adaptive cruise control, lane centering, and parking sensors.
Carrying an ATV or towing a small speedboat will not be a pain with the Maverick, thanks to its rated payload of 680 kg and the towing capacity of more than 1800 kg, respectively. The standard towing capacity of the Maverick is 900 kg but throwing in a max-tow package will hike it up. And if you need your truck to veer off the road, you may be interested in the FX4 pack. It is available for the Mavericks with the EcoBoost engine and AWD, adding taller tyres, lifted suspension, hill descent control, better underbody protection and two additional off-road driving modes.
The Ace in the Ford Maverick’s deck is its price. The starting price of this little truck in the United States is US$ 19,995 (equivalent to Dhs 73,445). At this price, making it about as expensive as a compact sedan. No word on its journey to the Middle East yet.