What we're driving: 2022 Ford Maverick hybrid
It's rare that a vehicle can satisfy so many people with such diverse needs, but the 2022 Ford Maverick scores big on multiple levels.
- Finally, a pickup truck that people can afford — and that's not impossible to park.
- And it's a hybrid, which means it gets great gas mileage — up to 42 mpg in city driving.
- With a starting price under $20,000, it's also a surprising entry-level model for a brand that no longer sells small cars.
Why it matters: Today's trucks have gotten bigger and more expensive over the years, pricing many would-be buyers out of the market.
- The average transaction price of a mid-sized pickup is $39,669, according to Kelly Blue Book, while a loaded Ford F-150 or Chevrolet Silverado can easily top $80,000.
The Maverick, on the other hand, is within reach for many, provided you don't insist on a lot of fancy features.
- It comes in three trim levels: XL ($19,995), XLT ($22,360) and Lariat ($25,860).
- On the base model, you'll have to adjust the mirror and cloth seats manually, and there's no cruise control or blind-spot monitoring.
- Trade up and you get a nicer interior, with vinyl seats (no leather), a push-button start and modern safety features.
- Infotainment is optional on a small 8-inch screen, but at least Apple Carplay and Android Auto are standard.
The Maverick's design is so clever, however, you probably won't miss those niceties.
- A series of notches in the truck bed enable do-it-yourself improvements like bike racks and dividers.
- Ford is even offering instructions for DIYers to 3D-print their own accessories.
- It can't match the towing or cargo-hauling capabilities of the F-150, but as the Detroit Free Press noted, the Maverick "looks and feels like a well-made tool."
The bottom line: There's no other vehicle on the market that offers the value of the Ford Maverick.