DETROIT – Ford Motor’s new Maverick truck would be the first pickup in America with a typical gas-electric hybrid engine when it goes on sale this fall beginning at about $20,000.
The firm unveiled the compact pickup Tuesday because the smallest car in its extremely worthwhile truck lineup, slotting under the full-size F-150 and midsize Ranger pickups. The Maverick is about 3 toes shorter in size and 7 inches decrease than an F-150, Ford mentioned.
Compact pickups are an untapped and unproven market within the U.S. Ford’s enlargement into the section comes as gross sales of vans have skyrocketed lately, with buy consideration surpassing that of vehicles final 12 months, in response to Cox Automotive.
2022 Ford Maverick hybrid (left) and 2.0-liter EcoBoost Lariat 1
Expanding Ford’s truck enterprise has been a goal under CEO Jim Farley, who’s restructuring the automaker’s operations to deal with its strengths corresponding to pickups.
The identify Maverick is not new to Ford. It produced a two-door sedan with that identify from 1969 to 1979. The firm additionally used the identify Maverick in Australia, China and Europe for a number of automobiles.
Ford expects the new Maverick to draw new patrons to the model in addition to the extraordinarily loyal pickup truck section, in response to officers.
“Maverick challenges the status quo and the stereotypes of what a pickup truck can be,” Todd Eckert, Ford truck group advertising supervisor, mentioned in an announcement. “We believe it will be compelling to a lot of people who never before considered a truck.”
Several Ford officers throughout a media briefing referred to as the Maverick a “truck for people who never knew they wanted a truck.”
The car is a typical five-passenger, four-door pickup not like different Ford vans such because the F-150 that begin with two doorways and seat solely two or three individuals.
Ford mentioned the Maverick will come customary with a hybrid gas-electric powertrain that’s anticipated to have 500 miles of vary on a single tank of fuel. The hybrid car is anticipated to attain an EPA-estimated 40 mpg gasoline economic system in metropolis driving, in response to Ford. The firm declined to launch complete and freeway gasoline economic system estimates.
Chris Mazur, chief engineer of the pickup, mentioned the 40 mpg metropolis was Ford’s “rallying cry” for the car. He mentioned gasoline economic system is a serious consideration for smaller pickups.
(*40*) he informed CNBC. “It’s a white-space vehicle going into a new segment.”
Cox Automotive says cargo house is the highest issue — by a large margin — for shoppers who would think about a compact truck over a extra conventional SUV, adopted by gasoline effectivity and worth.
Analysts have mentioned the Maverick would must be priced nicely under the Ford Ranger and different midsize pickups to be aggressive within the U.S. market. A two-door model of the Ranger starts at about $25,000. A four-door mannequin starts at about $27,000, in response to Ford’s web site.
The Maverick will begin at $19,995, in response to Ford.
Unlike Ford’s different pickups, the Maverick can be assembled via a course of the auto trade calls “unibody” development. The course of, which is how vehicles are produced, is the place the body/physique of the car are one. That compares to “body-on-frame” development for many pickups and some vans and SUVs, which mixes the physique and body of the automobiles towards the top of manufacturing.
The most notable unibody pickup at present in the marketplace is the midsize Honda Ridgeline. Such development sometimes permits for a smoother journey however has much less functionality than a standard truck.
The smaller measurement of the Maverick will enable for simpler entry to the car’s mattress and cabin in contrast with bigger pickup vans, Ford mentioned.
The car’s customary 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid powertrain is rated at 191 horsepower and 155 foot-pounds torque. A 2.0-liter fuel engine rated at 250 horsepower and 277 foot-pounds of torque additionally can be out there.
The pickup is being produced at Ford’s Hermosillo plant in Mexico alongside its new Ford Bronco Sport SUV. The automobiles share the identical base, also referred to as a platform.
Compact automobiles with pickup beds have come and gone a number of instances all through the American auto trade.
Most notably, the Ford Ranchero and Chevrolet El Camino beginning within the Nineteen Fifties and Nineteen Sixties, and extra just lately, the Subaru Baja from the 2000s. Hyundai is getting into the small U.S. pickup market with the Santa Cruz, an SUV-like car that is scheduled to go on sale this summer time.
2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz
Ford expects to distinguish the Maverick from earlier automobiles in addition to the Santa Cruz by making it a extra conventional truck. It’s a plan much like its recently unveiled electric F-150 pickup.
“It’s unmistakably a Ford truck,” mentioned Heath Hilliard, Maverick artistic exterior designer.