How reliable or proven is the hybrid CVT?
I think research is going to show that because the Ford Maverick comes standard with a hybrid powertrain in a vehicle that doesn’t typically attract hybrid customers, that a high percentage of buyers will be experiencing a hybrid for the first time.
Because of this not only are many not experienced with driving and owning one, but have a lot of concerns about Ford’s hybrid drivetrain – how it will drive, how reliable is it, will it really get 40 mpg etc. So many questions. Because it’s new to them, it must be new right?
The reality is that Ford has been building hybrid cars and SUVs for well over a decade. The engine and hybrid eCVT in the Maverick is the latest generation of powertrain that powers the Ford Escape Hybrid and a variant of those that powered several other Ford and Lincoln models over the years.
It’s 2.5-liter gasoline engine built in Chihuahua Mexico is long proven. It’s in-house designed and built eCVT hybrid transmission assembled in Van Dyke, MI is also long proven. The only thing new in the Maverick is a latest generation electric motor designed and built by Ford instead of outsourced from a supplier – which by the way has more power and is more efficient.
The bottom line is that Ford has been doing this for a while. There’s nothing unproven or risky here. If you want to get an idea of what it’s like to drive, test drive a Ford Escape Hybrid – it will be nearly identical.
Why isn’t there an AWD hybrid available?
While the Maverick uses virtually the same hybrid powertrain as the Ford Escape which offers AWD, because the Maverick uses a modified variation with the new electric motor, engineering and prove-out for an AWD version is still ongoing.
Thus such an option was not available for 2022 model year production. This is not to say AWD for Maverick hybrid is promised and a sure thing, but will more than likely be something we see come available later down the line.
Will there be a plug-in hybrid Maverick?
It’s possible. The gasoline engine and eCVT powertrain is mechanically identical to a non plug-in hybrid, so nothing need change there to offer a plug-in. The major difference is the addition of more battery capacity, a different control system and some software changes.
These things are in Ford’s parts bin and reports I have read tell that the floorboard in the Maverick hybrid is already designed to allow for additional battery capacity to be mounted without any structural changes. I think like and AWD Maverick, it’s something we will see in the next year or so.
Can the Maverick be flat towed?
Yes and No. The Maverick Hybrid can be flat towed but the 2.0 EcoBoost models cannot. According to the Maverick Towing Guide you can find online with a simple search, you can safely flat tow the hybrid by following a few procedures.
Why are there so few upscale options and features for Maverick?
In short, because Ford wanted Maverick to be cheap. If too many standard features, too many options and extras were included in the Maverick it would cut into the place of the showroom the Ranger sits. In essence, if you are going to spend $30, 35, or $40,000 Ford would rather sell you a Ranger.
This is why the slimmer level of standard features is seen across the lineup of Maverick trims. This is why we don’t have high-end touchscreen infotainment systems, leather interiors and all the like. Not yet any Platinum or Limited trim grades. For now at least, Maverick is meant to stay in its lane as an affordable product. Simple as that.
Will I be able to upgrade to a larger touchscreen later?
On the tail of the last question, I have seen a lot of people asking about whether they can upgrade their 2022 Maverick later to a larger and better touchscreen, upgrade to SYNC3 or SYNC4 later. The simplest answer is no.
The aftermarket doesn’t offer a lot in the way of custom fit systems that would replace the stock Ford touchscreen in a way that is seamless and OEM in its look and function. Furthermore, these systems are not always interchangeable, meaning if such a system came available in 2023 or 2024, it would be unlikely you could have it installed in your 2022 Maverick without upgrading a lot of wiring and back-end hardware.
What color interiors come with each trim?
There has been a lot of discussion out there about the interior colors with the Maverick. This is in part because while there are lots of photos of the XLT and Lariat interiors out there, little is shown for the XL. Furthermore, the Ford website early on was ambiguous in its descriptions and photos of the XL interior, not being clear about what the colors really include.
So let me clear this up. You had better like blue because the background color in all three trim-grades is Navy Pier. That’s Navy Blue to you and me. The XL, the XLT and the Lariat all have Navy Pier plastics in the dash, console, door panels and surrounding trim.
Only the colors of the dash trim inserts, door panel inserts, and seating fabric change from trim-grade to trim-grade.
The XL is listed as Black Onyx and Medium Dark Slate. This description is for the seating cloth, the surrounding environment is Navy Pier as shown on the material palette as well as is now shown in updated photos and 360 view on the Ford website.
XLT trim has upgraded seating with Navy Pier and Medium Dark Slate cloth but adds orange accent pieces throughout and a light stone finish accent plastic in the doors and on the dash. Again, Navy Pier surrounds all.
Lariat trim is listed as Desert Brown for its vinyl seats but also includes Navy Pier throughout. Here the plastic accents are a bit more upscale looking with bronze colored accents. Note that while it looks like leather, it is ActiveX which is Ford’s name for vinyl.
Why Ford went with a Navy Pier color in all trucks is likely a decision made in cost, to keep everything as common as possible. I happen to like to so it doesn’t bother me, though I know not everyone will be happy. I predict Ford will change it up in a year or two after they hear from enough customers and dealers that they want something else to choose from.
Will there be a single or super-cab Maverick?
Not at all likely. Don’t be waiting for it. There are two main reasons for a standard super-crew cab on the Maverick. The fact is that crew-cabs sell way more than a single or super-cab. Even where they are offered, their sales numbers are minimal. So when launching a new product with low costs in mind, it makes sense to offer it only one way, the way that sells.
The second reason is because of the Maverick’s uni-body construction and design. When you have a uni-body constructed truck, great structural challenges have to be met to keep it from bending in half for lack of a better way of putting it.
If you look at other uni-body trucks, the previous generation Honda Ridgeline and even the new Hyundai Santa Cruz you will notice the flying buttress design, that being the sloped C-Pillar designed in to create a bracing effect against heavy loads and body twist.
With the current Ridgeline and the new Maverick, there is no flying buttress. Instead they have hung the rear quarter panels on as a separate piece so that the rear cargo box structure can move and twist without wrinkling up your sheetmetal.
Offering a super-cab or single-cab variation of the Maverick with a longer bed would require a complete structural redesign and a completely different body structure able to handle heavier loads assumed with a longer bed. With the current design format, it’s unlikely that really works structurally without adding significant weight and cost with extra bracing. Again, for the amount of vehicles they’d actually sell, its a proposition that just doesn’t pencil.
Can you lift or lower the Maverick?
Not today, but count on the aftermarket manufactures of springs and suspension kits to be on this thing quick. The Maverick is a vehicle that I suspect will be popular with the mod crowd both for those wanting lowered custom sport truck looks as well as a more rugged off-road theme.
I would look to companies who already build a lift-kit for the Ford Bronco Sport and keep an eye on them. It would be easy for them to offer a variation for the Maverick, at least for AWD models. Whether a lift kit for the FWD models takes hold in the market is a wild card.
Lowering springs should be a given as well for both FWD and AWD. Look to established manufacturers like Eibach, H&R Springs and maybe even Ford Performance in the coming year to see what pops up.
What aftermarket accessories will be available when Maverick goes on sale?
I see lots of dreaming and wishing going on, lots of questions about what kind of aftermarket accessories will be available for the new Maverick. In short, count on just about anything you can get for any other truck being available in pretty short order.
For me, I intend to make this a work truck but also a platform for camping and outdoor things. This means I’m going to be looking for bed racks, a tent, and storage solutions for the bed whether they be tonneau covers, boxes or whatever. Also, perhaps I’d like an up-size on tires and wheels to go along with a few other details.
What I would suggest you do is look at what companies are already offering the items you want to see for vehicles like the Ford Ranger and Ford Bronco Sport. These are likely the brands you will first see the items your eye is on coming out first.
I will be going to the SEMA Show in early November to see the first accessorized Ford Maverick pickups on display. The annual industry show is where all the aftermarket manufactures come together to show off their latest greatest. I anticipate many new things for the Maverick will be on display for me to show you.