Review by Veeno Dewan

The new 2022 Ford Maverick pickup truck slots just below the mid-size Ford Ranger, and has an advantage being also available as a full-hybrid – as well as a conventional gas-powered version. The Maverick is based on the same platform as the Ford Bronco Sport and Ford Escape and arrives as a four-door, five-passenger crew cab, with a 4-foot-5 bed.
The gasoline engine on the XL and XLT trims, is a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder engine, making 250 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. It comes standard with all-wheel drive, and can be optioned with the FX4 off-road package, or with a towing package to pull up to 1,814 kg (4,000 lb). The Maverick’s payload is 680 kg (1,500 lb), and the bed can be fitted with dividers to carry bicycles.
In contrast, the Maverick hybrid uses a 2.5L four-cylinder engine that makes 162 hp and 155 lb-ft of torque on its own, and a net 191 hp when paired with the electric hybrid motor. It’s mated to an automatic continuously variable transmission (CVT), with only front wheel drive available. Towing capacity for the hybrid is 907 kg (2,000 lb),
The Maverick lineup starts with the XL trim for $27,895, before tax. The step-up XLT, starts at $30,795, with available extra cost options. Both trims can be optioned to a non-hybrid engine, which is the only choice in the top-line Lariat. The Maverick XLT includes: 17-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, , eight-inch touchscreen, cruise control, a storage bin under the rear seat, Type-A and Type-C USB ports, and a locking tailgate, Options include such items as the XLT Luxury package for $3,150, which adds features such as: an eight-way driver’s seat, heated front seats and steering wheel, remote engine starter, heated body-colour door mirrors, a trailer hitch; drop-in bedliner, LED lighting, tie-down rails, and a 110-volt outlet. The gasoline engine -only all-wheel-drive model, offers the FX4 Off-Road package, and a higher-capacity towing. Ford also the FlexBed system which allows for creative ways of lugging bikes, building material and what have you with a two-position tailgate, multiple Tie downs, and available u-rail sliding anchors.
Standard safety assist items include emergency front braking, automatic high-beam headlights, and a back-up camera. Extra safety packages include items such as: blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, lane-keep assist, and hill descent control. Adaptive cruise control is only available on the top-level Lariat, as an option.
Interior wise- a lot of thought has gone into giving the Maverick a practical versatile interior designed for maximum functionality. Nice touches include larger water bottle holders in the door panels, a phone holder in the centre console; and plenty of storage cubbyholes, plus a wireless phone recharging pad. The Maverick’s interior has rugged styling cues, with some cool use of colour and texture. It’s not as luxurious as an F150, ,but this is a well priced compact truck.
There is a comprehensive simple-looking dash with proper buttons and dials to operate the climate system and stereo. The infotainment screen is intuitive and easy to use. The rear seats flip up for extra cargo storage. Overall interior room is good, with comfortable seats and adequate leg room in the rear. My XLT came with some cool hits of orange trim on the air vents, in the seat piping and elsewhere.
On the road, the Maverick Hybrid ride offers a smooth and composed. Feeling. The steering is nicely weighted and, and the vehicle is responsive on acceleration and holds it own on the highway offering satisfyingly strong, linear power delivery. The switch from gas to electric is almost seamless. The Maverick Hybrid handles a variety of surfaces very well thanks to its well sorted suspension and dampers. Large bumps are soaked up compliantly while body roll is muted. The truck feels solid and durable.
The Maverick Hybrid’s fuel economy is officially rated by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) at 5.6 L/100 km in the city, 7.1 on the highway, and 6.3 combined. If you op for the non-hybrid 2.0L, it’s rated at 9.6 L/100 km in combined driving.
Downsides are few, the fold-down rear seat is a full-width bench, not a split affair, and there is no flat floor once its folded, but is balanced by the handy hidden storage bins, under the rear seat. To sum up, the Maverick is very impressive and is nice to drive. What is compelling is the very attractive starting price for the hybrid which is a bargain. Other highlights include a smart interior, good road manners, compact size and the fuel-efficient hybrid powertrain portion are all plus points. For buyers wanting a well priced fuel frugal small truck – walk this way!

2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid: priced from XL trim for $27,895, – $35,665.
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