NEWS

Our Long-Term 2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid Is Gone, But We Still Love It

ford maverick hybrid fwd 2022 15 exterior dynamic rear angle scaled jpg 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat hybrid | Cars.com photo by Christian Lantry

Our time with our long-term 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat hybrid, winner of our Best of the Year 2022 and Best Pickup Truck of 2022 and 2023 awards, has wound down. Our staff racked up nearly 16,000 miles on the truck’s odometer in the year we owned it, and our ownership experience was mostly issue-free. The plucky Maverick got its share of scratches and dings from frequent city use in and around Chicago, including one large dent in the plastic lower front bumper that we repaired ourselves, but through it all, our staff’s view of the pint-sized pickup hasn’t wavered. We’d certainly buy it again, and it has lived up to the expectations created by its multiple award wins.

Related: ​​Masterson to Masterson: Driving Our Ford Maverick 2,800 Miles for the Bit

We paid $34,585 for our Maverick — including a $2,500 dealer markup and $800 to ship it from the dealership in Ohio to our home base in Chicago. Besides the addition of a very necessary $1,100 bed cover, our costs have been mostly limited to fuel. How much did we spend on gas, and what was our overall fuel economy? Read on to find out.

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A Fuel-Efficient Pickup?

We logged 15,719.7 miles in our Maverick hybrid and filled it with 477.4 gallons of fuel, meaning we got nearly 33 mpg from the truck on average. That’s short of the Maverick hybrid’s EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of 37 mpg combined, but a pickup truck that can do pickup things and still get over 30 mpg in everyday use is still impressive.

Why did our truck get lower fuel economy than its rating? A few things could be in play. Our well-equipped Lariat could be heavier than the truck used for the testing; our driving styles may not match the testing protocol; we’ve used the Maverick for towing and hauling; we occasionally put the truck into Sport mode; and we’ve also taken it to the drag strip. These use cases aren’t conducive to maximizing efficiency, but they do reflect how an actual owner may use the truck (except for the drag-strip part).

Ford recommends 91-octane or higher premium fuel for the Maverick hybrid (and the gas-only EcoBoost version), but it says 87-octane regular gas is acceptable, too. Overall, we spent $2,110.06 on gas; $1,431.23 on premium and the rest on regular. Our overall cost per gallon averaged $4.42; $3.30 for regular and $5.27 for premium.

Would We Buy the Maverick Again?

Staff opinion of the Maverick remains high. It’s not my favorite of our long-term vehicles because I don’t have any strong memories associated with it — I haven’t taken it to a friend and coworker’s wedding in Nashville like I did with our Volvo XC90 or used the excuse of going to see a screening of “Cats” to take our long-term Hyundai Palisade to Toronto in the dead of winter — but it’s served me well when I’ve driven it. I’m not thrilled with the ride or interior quality, but then I remember that this is an extremely affordable and fuel-efficient pickup truck — it isn’t meant to excel in either category.

From highway trips to running errands in the city, the Maverick has been a capable truck that does exactly what I need it to. Not having to deal with any major mechanical issues has also been a pleasant surprise. Knowing what I know a year on, I’d be happy to buy it again.

Don’t take my word for it, though. Here’s what some of our other staff had to say about it:

Damon Bell, Senior Research Editor

What a charmer this vehicle is. The Maverick is a master class in smart design and careful tuning to get the most out of relatively humble, low-cost components.

I don’t think I’ve ever geeked out like this on an interior door-pull design — it’s space efficient, ergonomically ideal (at least for me), and even fun to look at from a design standpoint.

The Maverick benefits from consumer perceptions/expectations of a pickup truck versus a compact car or compact SUV. The hybrid drivetrain isn’t particularly quiet, and the ride quality can be on the noisy/bouncy side, as well. Since the Maverick is a pickup that promises some workhorse capability, these traits are more forgivable than they would be in a sedan or an SUV — and actually, they might contribute to the Maverick’s plucky, no-nonsense vibe.

Joe Bruzek, Managing Editor

I would buy this truck a million times over, even at our marked-up price that was $2,500 over sticker. The Maverick hybrid is a spunky little truck with exceptional fuel economy and the perfect-sized bed for the DIY-er/home-improvement enthusiast. I loved being able to throw a load of electronics or hazardous waste in the bed to take to the recycling center with no concern over carrying disgusting junk in my SUV’s cargo area. I couldn’t use it as a primary family hauler like a larger truck, however, but it would make a great second car to occasionally haul a small family.

With two large car seats in the backseat, I couldn’t use the cab for storage, even for groceries, so the awesome bed cover we installed was imperative to get the most use out of the truck. Despite being front-wheel-drive only, the hybrid’s snow performance was admirable, and the only reason I’d miss all-wheel drive in the Chicago area (flat land with good snow removal) is because it pairs with a powerful turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes the Maverick a fun-to-drive sport compact truck.

Mike Hanley, Senior Road Test Editor

Owning the Maverick has been a relatively uneventful experience, with a single oil and filter change and tire rotation being our only service-related expenses. We’ve also been able to hit — and surpass — at various times the truck’s impressive EPA-estimated gas mileage of 37 mpg combined. Even though the Maverick is small by modern truck standards, it’s still big enough to work with an impressive 1,428-pound payload capacity. It can also tow a small trailer in a pinch — and still get decent fuel economy in the process.

We knew going in that the Maverick’s ride quality with an empty cargo box wasn’t great, and it remains one of the truck’s less impressive attributes. Interior trim-piece fit has also been underwhelming, though the Maverick’s interior design details still resonate. If you occasionally need an open cargo box for hauling things you wouldn’t want to put in an SUV’s cargo area but still want the driving manners and efficiency of a small SUV, the Maverick is a strong choice.

What’s Next?

We recently purchased our next long-term test vehicle and will be reporting on it soon enough, but it’s worth mentioning that our Maverick ended up being part of that purchase transaction; the Maverick was our trade-in vehicle on the deal, with the dealer giving us $31,500 for it. While that’s not quite what we paid for it when new when you include the original dealer’s $2,500 markup, and the truck did still have the pricey tonneau cover we installed, it’s still remarkable that we were able to drive the Maverick for a year, sell it to a dealer at trade-in value and still get more than the truck’s original $31,000 sticker price. It’s a reflection both of the truck’s continued appeal and the current state of the car market. Having lived with the Maverick for a year, however, we thoroughly get its appeal.

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Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

Photo of Brian Normile
Road Test Editor Brian Normile joined the automotive industry and Cars.com in 2013, and he became part of the Editorial staff in 2014. Brian spent his childhood devouring every car magazine he got his hands on — not literally, eventually — and now reviews and tests vehicles to help consumers make informed choices. Someday, Brian hopes to learn what to do with his hands when he’s reviewing a car on camera. He would daily-drive an Alfa Romeo 4C if he could. Email Brian Normile

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