Ford has announced that it will be introducing a new pickup next week, effectively making this the pre-engagement ring of automotive commitments. Anticipated to be a compact truck priced to contend with tougher times, the model has fittingly been named the Maverick. The title harkens back to the 1970s and the 2-door coupe (later sedan) equipped with a lineup of “Thriftpower” motors that originally had the name emblazoned on the rear deck with a somewhat confusing cattle theme.
While designed in roughly the same spirit as the original, the modern Maverick is a different animal and unlikely to come with the optional Windsor V8 allotted to the coupe. We’ve been told it’s to be produced alongside the smaller Bronco Sport in Mexico and likely share a platform. That means powertrains will probably be limited to 1.5 or 2.0-liter Ecoboost motors with a maximum possible output of 245 horsepower.
But that should suffice for a pint-sized pickup. It’s more than any non-Syclone version of the Chevy S-10 produced and would undoubtedly be sufficient for the lighter workloads someone would buy the truck for in the first place. Ford also released a teaser video where the truck looks to have a hybrid badge on the back. We’re betting that model would use the 2.5-liter Duratec iVCT gas-electric hybrid that’s found in the current-generation Escape. Though it should be said that absolutely none of this has been confirmed by the manufacturer.
Pricing is a mystery but Ford will absolutely keep the Maverick well below the Bronco Sport’s nearly $27,000 MSRP. It also has to try and avoid stepping on the Ranger’s toes, likely necessitating a price tag as close to $20,000 as it can manage. Blue Oval previously hinted that it wanted to introduce a pickup under $20,000, though we’re not sure how realistic that’s going to be with just every other model seeing a price hike over the last year — including the Bronco Sport.
The official debut happens on June 8th, with Ford hiring Gabrielle Union (who I verified is actually famous after a quick search) to simultaneously present the vehicle on her own Instagram and TikTok channels. The manufacturer will also be broadcasting the event on Hulu and via its existing social media channels. It’s likely to be a cringe festival but we’re genuinely interested in what the pickup is going to offer and hope this heralds in more legitimately small trucks, rather than “midsize” behemoths like the Chevrolet Colorado and Ford’s own Ranger.
[Images: Ford Motor Co.]