There's only one real possibility.
It is perhaps one of the worst-kept secrets at Ford right now. For months, we've known the Blue Oval has been putting the finishing touches on a new truck to be called the Maverick. Slotted beneath the midsize Ranger, the Maverick is classified as a "C-Pick Up", or compact pickup, that shares its underpinnings with the Bronco Sport. Assuming all goes to plan, the Maverick will go on sale for the 2022 model year, and those plans appear to be moving along just fine.
CNBC reports Ford has quietly begun Maverick production at its Hermosillo factory in Mexico, the same facility where a leaked image of a pre-production example was exposed not long ago.
Ford was understandably furious about that but sometimes there's no stopping the internet (or a suspected supplier employee with a smartphone camera). The latest report goes on to state just 21 examples were assembled last month and they'll likely be used for last-minute testing, early media test drives, and publicity shots. Ford declined to comment on the latest report.
The company's entry into the compact truck segment couldn't happen at a better time. Newly-minted CEO Jim Farley has gone on the record stating Ford's plans to expand its global truck franchise and enter new segments below where it currently competes.
Expected to be priced from around or below $20,000, the Maverick could be the ideal truck for thousands who view the Ranger as still too large and, perhaps, too expensive (MSRP: $25,000) for their overall needs. The full-size F-150, Ford's long-time best-seller, may not even be on these buyers' radar for many reasons. Although specific details still remain under wraps, the Maverick's general makeup is expected to be very similar to the Bronco Sport, which is built at the same factory.
Like the compact SUV, the Maverick will come standard with a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder while the turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder will be optional. Full specs such as potentially standard AWD are expected very soon.