By Cars.com EditorsNovember 16, 2022
About the video
Is the Ford Maverick’s EcoBoost engine’s performance worth its MPG penalty?
(light upbeat music) So we are here today with two 2022 Ford Mavericks, our own long-term Maverick Lariat hybrid and a front-wheel drive XLT EcoBoost. We're gonna conduct a little experiment.
We want to see if the EcoBoost on its own is really worth it. The point of the EcoBoost is that it gets you other things in the Maverick. It's the only way to get all-wheel drive, it's the only way to get the towing package, it's the only way to get the FX4 or Tremor off-road packages, so there's a point to it beyond just performance. But we want to see is that power, that fun on its own really worth it. So what we're gonna do today is we're gonna conduct acceleration testing both without and with payload. We're gonna do 0 to 60, quarter mile, and then we're also going to conduct fuel economy testing just to see where, using our measurements, the delta is between the two powertrains when it comes to fuel economy. That's enough talking for now. Let's give it a shot down the track. This is our Maverick Lariat hybrid, gonna put it in sport mode and just see what it does. And we are unloaded at the moment. And that is it. That is not fast. Then again, the last time I was doing this, I was driving a RAM 1500 TRX, so, you know, bear with me on that one. (engine whooshing) (laughs) Why? But for all the quickness this truck has driving around town, not a lot there once you get past the sort of 0 to 30 range. Oh man, I just realized we're gonna be adding payload to this eventually, and that's probably not gonna be good. (Brian laughs) <v Crew>Was it thrilling? No, not at all. We are about to do our acceleration testing in the loaded Maverick EcoBoost. We've got a great deal of payload back there. The big question here is whether or not this is gonna be faster than the unladen Maverick hybrid. I'm leaning towards yes. Let's find out. (car thudding) Ooh, that was a lot of wheel hop, so we're gonna, we're gonna... That sucks is what that was. Therein lies one of the problems with front-wheel drive EcoBoost Maverick with payload, and now I'm very concerned for the hybrid as well, which we haven't tested just yet, but that didn't seem good. We're gonna try that again. So let's see. I'm gonna one foot it, I'm not even gonna two foot it. So before, I was holding the brake with my left foot and then stomping the gas with my right, but now I'm just gonna... Nah, that was a bad start, probably could have laid into it a little more right away. I will say though, once you're able to get on the gas, the delivery of power is fairly linear and impressive. The EcoBoost Maverick might be the sport truck of the bunch, but I am craving all-wheel drive right now. I don't know if that would reduce the wheel hop entirely, but I have to think it would make it a little better. All right, we are back in the Maverick EcoBoost now for unloaded acceleration testing. There we go. See, that little bit of extra weight back over the front drive wheels seems to make a world of difference. This is a lot faster than the Maverick hybrid in just any acceleration measure. Not surprising though. Again, this is 250 horsepower, 277 pounds feet of torque compared to 191 and 155 for the hybrid, and this is a little bit lighter. So yeah, this is gonna be the speed demon of the pair here today. We are back in the Maverick hybrid, and we're about to try acceleration testing 0 to 60 and quarter mile with payload. Ooh, that's... Oh, it's trying so hard, bless your heart. 60, 75, we got to 80, hey! Woof. So now that we've taken the Mavericks down the track, what's the performance difference between the EcoBoost and the hybrid? Well, the EcoBoost was consistently about two seconds quicker 0 to 60 and about a second and a half quicker in the quarter mile, with about a seven mile an hour difference in speed. And that difference also carries over among the trucks in terms of payload or no payload. That is, both trucks were equally affected by the over half a ton of sandbags we had in the back. So yes, the EcoBoost is quicker, is that enough? We also did a fuel economy run where the Maverick hybrid outperformed the EcoBoost in terms of both its trip computer and our pump-calculated miles per gallon average. Over about 200 miles of driving, the trip computer had the Maverick hybrid at 44.1 miles per gallon, while the Maverick EcoBoost was at 33.1. And then by our calculations, the Maverick hybrid performed at 41.5 miles per gallon, while the Maverick EcoBoost was closer to its estimation at 32.76. Those differences are significant. They're both actually higher than the combined fuel economy ratings, according to the EPA. We spent about $33 on the EcoBoost and almost $26 on the Maverick hybrid, both, again, recommend premium gas. So is the EcoBoost engine worth it overall? On its own, in a front-wheel drive Maverick, I would say no. This was more fun to drive than the Maverick hybrid, particularly on the drag strip, but then what isn't? That said, normally, when you choose which powertrain for your Maverick, it's not gonna cost you anything. You can get front-wheel drive with the EcoBoost or the hybrid, the hybrid is front-wheel drive only, or with the EcoBoost, you have the option to add all-wheel drive. That's the true advantage of the EcoBoost is that it unlocks all-wheel drive, it unlocks the towing package, it unlocks the FX4 and Tremor packages. Normally, it's a no-cost option, though on the Lariat, if you do want the EcoBoost, you are going to have to add all-wheel drive, so it's not quite no cost. But overall, if you want those features, yes, absolutely, get the EcoBoost. If you're just gonna drive your Maverick around, if you're not worried about going off-road, if you're not gonna tow a lot, go for the hybrid, save the money on gas. If you'd like to learn more about this comparison and check out all the data and how we tested these two Mavericks, be sure to check out the full article on cars.com/news.