In addition to becoming far more capable, comfortable, and well-equipped with each passing generation, pickup truck proportions have grown by leaps and bounds over the years. As its perennially best-selling light-duty F-150 continues to improve and expand, Ford has invested in smaller models to meet the needs of drivers who don’t need or want a full-size pickup. Ford first did this with the resurgence of the Ranger nameplate and is at it again with the all-new Maverick, which is based on the Bronco Sport crossover platform.

Boasting fuel economy of 5.9 L/100 in the city and a turning radius of 12.2 m (40 ft), Ford is looking to appeal to urban dwellers who want the fuel economy and manoeuvrability of a smaller vehicle with the styling and utility of a pickup. The 2022 Ford Maverick is a four-door compact unibody design truck that seats five and promises 800 km of range on a single tank of fuel.

What’s in a Name?

If the name Maverick seems familiar, it is with good reason. Following the same animal theme of the Mustang and Pinto, the original Ford Maverick was sold from 1970 to 1979. Marketed as a compact foreign car fighter, it was named after a term used to describe unbranded range animals.

Pricing and Trim Levels

Three trim levels are available – XL, XLT, and Lariat. Standard wheel sizes are 17-inches on the XL and XLT, while the Lariat gets 18-inch aluminum wheels as standard fare.

The XL starts at an MSRP of $25,900 with front-wheel drive and a 2.5L four-cylinder hybrid powertrain that is good for 191 hp and 155 lb-ft of torque and a 907-kg (2,000-lb) towing capacity. The XLT and Lariat start at $28,500 and $34,450, respectively.

Upgrading to the turbocharged 2.0L engine (optional on the XL and XLT, but standard on the Lariat), brings performance numbers up to 250 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque with an 1,814-kg (4,000-lb) towing capacity, but only when equipped with the 4K Tow Package. At a cost of $750.38, the package contains a hitch receiver with seven-pin connector, transmission oil cooler, higher capacity radiator, upgraded cooling fan and drive ratio, and a trailer brake controller. The towing package is not available with the entry-level hybrid engine, which is matched with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). The inline-four-cylinder EcoBoost engine gets an eight-speed automatic transmission.

An FX4 package adds beefier all-terrain tires and off-road suspension tuning, as well as underbody cladding, an additional mud/rut and sand drive mode, and hill descent control. The FX4 package costs $1,120 and is only available on all-wheel drive models outfitted in XLT and Lariat trim levels.

A special First Edition Package is available for $3,450.38 exclusively on the Lariat trim, which adds unique 17-inch wheels on aggressive tires, a black roof and mirror caps, a power tilt/sliding moonroof, a soft tonneau cover, and First Edition graphics.

Technology and Safety

The standard stereo is an AM/FM radio with six speakers. Ford’s Sync 3 infotainment system can be added, which includes an 8-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, two smart charging USB ports, and enhanced voice recognition. An eight-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system is also available on the Lariat trim as part of the Luxury Package.

The driver can choose from five drive modes, including normal, eco, sport, slippery, and tow/haul to prioritize fuel economy or accommodate various driving conditions.

The FordPass app allows the owner to identify the vehicle’s location, monitor the fuel level, lock or unlock the doors, and even start the vehicle from their phone. Ford’s Co-Pilot360 suite of safety technology also comes standard, which includes automatic emergency braking and automatic high-beams. Additional options include adaptive cruise control, blind spot detection with cross-traffic alert, lane centring and steering assist.

Flex Bed

Marketed as the Flex Bed, the 1.3-m (4.5-ft) bed offers a 680-kg (1,500-lb) maximum payload capacity. A 12V outlet as standard and a 110V outlet is optional. The multi-position tailgate, integrated slots and 10 tie-down points offer flexibility for carrying cargo. Ford is touting endless versatility by suggesting DIY solutions using home improvement store products and simple tools.

Interior

The interior styling combines a variety of materials, textures, and colours. Attention has been paid to storage solutions, including between the front seats, within the doors, and under the rear seats. Leg room is limited in the rear, but there is sufficient headroom in the vehicle for all passengers.

The Ford Maverick goes on sale this fall as a 2022 model year vehicle. Orders can be placed on Ford.ca now.

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