How we’d equip our Best Car To Buy 2022 winner

The 2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid is an automotive unicorn. The compact pickup truck costs less than half of the average new utility vehicle, is more efficient than most cars, and is so sought after that you might have as hard a time locating it as you would a unicorn. 

Even though Ford’s smash hit won our Best Car To Buy 2022 award, you have to take what you can find in lots right now. Ordering for the Hybrid won’t reopen until this summer for the 2023 model year, Ford confirmed in early December. Bummer. We’ve waited this long for a small truck that costs $21,490, including $1,495 destination, and gets an EPA-rated 37 mpg combined, so we’re tempted to get what dealerships have in stock.

In the meantime, it is possible to order a Maverick now, but not with the 2.5-liter inline-4 hybrid with its 94-kw electric motor and 191 hp combined. Instead, shoppers can pay more for the more powerful 2.0-liter turbo-4 that makes 250-hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. With an 8-speed automatic, it comes with front-wheel drive or can be optioned with all-wheel drive, which is not possible with the front-drive only hybrid. With a 4,000-lb towing capacity, it can tow double the Hybrid, but fuel economy drops to 26 mpg combined or 25 mpg combined with AWD. The turbo-4 only costs $1,085 more, and AWD adds $2,220. That brings the total for the Maverick XL turbo to $24,795, which is very reasonable given the average transaction price of all new cars at about $46,000.

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

2022 Ford Maverick

The crew cab with a 4.5-foot bed comes with 17-inch steel wheels, cloth seats, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with smartphone compatibility, a wi-fi hotspot, two USB ports, and automatic emergency braking. It even has power windows and door locks, as well as keyless entry. But you still need a key to start it, cruise control costs extra, and the interior is bedecked with as much plastic as a Costco folding table.

Still, we want the Hybrid. And we want it with a few extras, even though we’re as basic as a TikTok parent. Thus, we arrive at the $23,775 XLT Hybrid, which gets cruise control, power mirrors, and a power outlet in the bed. Orange highlights add some pop to the interior that distracts from its basic car basics. The number of bed tie downs increases from six to 10, and there’s a bed storage cubby.

Ford’s suite of driver-assist systems compels for only $540, but mostly because it includes a full-size spare tire in addition to blind-spot monitors and active land control. The towing package is exclusive to the turbo-4, but we’re OK with lightweight towing up to 2,000 lb. The Luxury Package includes a trailer hitch with 4-pin connector (it’s only $140 standalone), as well as some nice convenience features. For $2,345, it includes an 8-way power driver seat with better lumbar support, heated front seats, heated leather-wrapped steering wheel, LED bed lights, 400-watt/110-volt bed inverter, and spray-in bedliner. A tonneau cover’s going to cost us either $560 for a soft top or $1,160 for a hard top. Since we’re erring on the side of inexpensive, we’ll go soft to bring our options to $3,445.

Our Maverick XLT Hybrid costs $27,220. For 2023.  

We’d color it Velocity Blue or Area 51 for no extra charge, and hope for its arrival sooner rather than later. 

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