Impressive reservation numbers are proof it was the right move.
The Ford Maverick was a long time coming. Not only does it represent the Blue Oval's return to the compact pickup truck segment, but it's also part of a segment revival in general. With competitors like the new Hyundai Santa Cruz and Honda Ridgeline, the unibody Maverick had to be a standout from the get-go. This required plenty of homework on Ford's part. Speaking to Muscle Cars and Trucks, Maverick Marketing Manager Trevor Scott admitted the automaker wanted the truck to be affordable and appropriately sized. Essentially, it had to easily fit in showrooms.
"We're not shy about leaning into the fact that this is a compact truck," he said. "We recognize that at one point in time it was a really, really strong segment in the industry."
"For us it's not just a compact truck. It's a compact truck that delivers on a lot of these attributes that many of these customers prioritize today." Making a well-rounded vehicle was a must and it's not as easy as it sounds. Balancing core attributes like efficiency, storage, and general capabilities was a significant challenge for designers and engineers. It also had to be built "Ford Tough." Using decades of experience in that regard, Scott is confident Ford has delivered the goods.
"For Maverick, it's absolutely Built Ford Tough, it's part of the Built Ford Tough truck lineup… when we brought the Ranger to market there was definitely fear that it was going to cannibalize F-150 business. That's not been the case."
Having the Ford nameplate and reputation at its side, Scott and his employer are confident the Maverick has a solid edge over the Santa Cruz. A significant chunk of Maverick reservation holders are first-time truck buyers and that's already a huge win for Ford.
The fact that its starting price is just below $20,000 and that it's a hybrid is further proof Ford wants the Maverick to appeal to non-truck owners. Ford could have easily rushed the Maverick to market sooner but it correctly recognized there was an opportunity neither GM nor Stellantis were taking advantage of. Packaging the Maverick correctly required time, and early indicators seem to show that's paying off.