First Edition Review of the 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat

First Edition Review of the 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat:

A Compact Pickup That Survives When Fully Loaded

Small pickups were commonplace decades ago, completing the minor everyday chores while big rigs handled the bulk of the job. They were also the ideal foundation for bespoke construction, whether it was adding more power or applying flamboyant paint. Then, they all vanished, and the big guys gained control of every facet of life on the road and on the racetrack . Addition to all the work and space on the SEMA Show floor.

The Hyundai Santa Cruz and the Ford Maverick are two brand-new little trucks that can compete with mid-and full-size giants today. Both vehicles are unibody vehicles with front-or all-wheel drive and are designed for leisure and errand-running around town. For the 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat First Edition. Which I used to travel to and from Louisville, Kentucky, for my yearly trip to cover the Street Rod Nationals. The largest street rod event in the United States, for my numerous freelance customers, recreation was the order of the day.

2022 Ford Maverick Lariat:

Not your father’s Maverick.

Ford’s initial effort to counter the Japanese imports that were flooding the American market in the early 1970s. The Maverick, was successful in the wake of the 1973 oil crisis. Additionally, it wasn’t designed to continue more than one generation, with the 1978 Fairmont eventually taking over as its successor after the 1975 Granada. Nevertheless, the Blue Oval saw success with the tiny car, selling 578,914 units between April 1969. The conclusion of the 1970 model year alone. Over the course of the majority of the 1970s, the factory produced 2.1 million Mavericks in total. In addition to almost 500,000 Comets, which were the Maverick’s Mercury brothers.

Time-travel to 2021. For its 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat entry into the resurgent compact truck segment—which presently only contains the aforementioned Hyundai Santa Cruz—Ford revives the Maverick name. The new Maverick, Ford’s final compact pickup, is a unibody crew cab with a short bed built on the same C2 platform as the Bronco Sport and Escape. Unlike the original compact car from the 1970s or the second- and third-generation Ranger from the 1990s into the early 2010s (Ford’s last compact pickup).

And just like the car that carried the nameplate first, the new Maverick had a successful debut season. Therefore, until the 2023 order book opened on August 1, 2022. The only options available were front- and all-wheel-drive EcoBoost variants, like our Lariat First Edition. Orders for the standard hybrid configuration had to be closed early in 2022.

2022 Ford Maverick Lariat:

Styling and audience profiling.

The Ford Maverick looks more like a truck than the sleek and upscale Santa Cruz when compared to the two new compacts. Both of which have more in common with coupe utilities like the Chevrolet El Camino and Ford Ranchero than the traditional cab-plus-bed-on-full-frame compact trucks of the past. The compact truck lives up to what Ford expects from its whole series of trucks. Including the current Ranger (now a midsize truck) and the F-Series family of full-size rigs. This includes the broad face up front and the dramatic transition between cab and bed at the rear. Under the sideview mirrors, the Maverick even makes a small homage to the F-Series with a curve in the door panels that resembles the beltline cut-out for the front doors’ glass on the F-150 and Super Duty.

Therefore, how can this styling and profiling be amplified? Your Maverick Lariat may be purchased with the First Edition Package if you were fortunate enough to secure one when the 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat order book was still open. It also has a black painted roof with matching skull caps for the side mirrors. A power tilt/slide moon roof, and a soft-folding tonneau cover. These extras are designated “First Edition” decals for the hood and sides. If you were quick enough to choose the hybrid model. You also received a set of 18-inch black-painted wheels; otherwise. A set of Falken Wildpeaks would be installed on 17-inch aluminum wheels. Finally, you may choose between Area 51 and the package-only Rapid Red Tri-Coat Metallic for your First Edition.

The specific vehicle I was given for the week required some fiddling with the Ford online configurator, as I soon discovered. In fact, until I went through the configurator again, I believed my vehicle to be an exception. This meant first selecting EcoBoost with all-wheel drive, then scrolling down to select. The First Edition package (which by default selects Area 51 for the paint color). Finally selecting Rapid Red in the paint section. However, once it was established, everything was fine (and on the street).

2022 Ford Maverick Lariat:

Your choice of hybrid or EcoBoost depends on your budget.

There are two different powerplant options available regardless of how you customize your Maverick. Early birds could choose the Hybrid, which has a 2.5-liter inline-four with CVT and only sends 191 horsepower to the front wheels (no all-wheel drive option for the Hybrid thus far). The 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbo-four is the alternative. It comes with an eight-speed automatic transmission that can send all 255 horsepower to either the front or all four sides if AWD is selected. In the short bed, each option can haul up to 1,500 pounds and pull up to 2,000 pounds.

The 4K Tow Package, which my Maverick had and which included improvements to the powertrain cooling systems. Brake controller, and a trailer hitch receiver with a 7-pin connector to enable the Maverick to tow up to 4,000 pounds, is only available for the EcoBoost with all-wheel drive. Additionally, only the aforementioned combination will allow you to select the FX4 off-road kit, which includes all-terrain tires, front tow hooks. Drive modes for sand, mud, and rutted conditions.

But now that the order book for 2023 is available, customers can choose between the EcoBoost or the Hybrid once more. Which option should you pick? If fuel and financial savings are your top priorities. There is no contest: the Hybrid’s 42 city, 33 highway, 37 combined mpg rating and range of up to 511 miles per tank will cover the majority of journeys, including the majority of my six-hour, 400-mile commute to and from Louisville.

Unfortunately, the EcoBoost with all-wheel drive took a serious financial toll on me due to its 22 city, 29 highway. 25 combined mpg rating and a range of up to 412 miles on a single tank. Due primarily to the lengthy journeys I took during the week it was with me, I was able to average 26.5 mpg. Thank goodness I had some discounts to utilize on my way back to Virginia.

(Lariat) At the pinnacle of luxury

The Maverick’s Lariat trim level is already quite opulent. The First Edition package, however, kicks things up a notch by also including the Lariat Luxury and Ford Co-Pilot 360 options. The front seats, steering wheel, and side mirrors are all heated within the cab. Any device in need of a recharge will find two smart-charging USB ports and a wireless charging cradle there.

Of course, there is also the eight-inch touchscreen in the center console. Which is also equipped with SYNC 3, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. It’s essential to keep your iPhone or Pixel at the ready for nicer interfaces because the outdated SYNC 3 infotainment system isn’t the most aesthetically beautiful system available. (particularly considering systems like SYNC 4/4a and notably Android Automotive OS have since come).

The Maverick Hybrid’s back bench conveniently folds up to show the storage areas underneath. Including the one on the passenger side that would typically house the hybrid vehicle’s battery. Throw in the long all-weather mat, and not only will you have the perfect spot to tote groceries. But also messy goods. Furthermore, because the Maverick is designed for DIYers. The back bench passengers can bring their own 3D-printed cup holders. Attach them to the opening in front of the rear USB . 12-volt outlet array to accommodate any bottles or cups they may have. There are QR codes strewn throughout the cabin and on the bed that link to online instructions for those do-it-yourself tasks. Whether covered in leather or not, the seats are comfy.

In the Bluegrass State, you can work and have fun.

The 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat First Edition was with me for a week and primarily acted as my work truck for reporting on the NSRA Street Rod Nationals for different customers. One of my favorite events to go to is The Nationals. But in the future I’ll need a golf cart or one of those motorized mobility rides to truly cover everything. If I had had one this year, the tonneau cover would have been folded and it would have traveled with me every day in the back of the bed. It would also be simple to load and unload such a device to go throughout the grounds of the Kentucky Exposition Center due to the modest loading area of the bed.

However, the Maverick served as my mobility scooter. Transporting me from the NSRA Autocross in the vast back parking lot to the back door to the expo center floor. Where all the vendors peddled their wares to the thousands of attendees in a cool, storm-free environment.Even the several Ford F-Series tow trucks at the autocross, as seen above, blended in quite well.

Thanks to the varied weather Louisville had during the Nationals week. I had a chance to try out all of the Maverick’s driving modes, from Sport for slamming onto the highway to Slippery for navigating between my dad’s house and the expo center through the rain. To save fuel, I even tried using Eco mode. Though I don’t think it was as effective as it could have been. Not to mention Adaptive Cruise Control, which I first used in a group of Ford Broncos. While returning from an off-roading excursion in Northern Michigan’s Bronco Everglades.

Although ACC is most clearly designed for cruising, it can be useful when traffic is backed up. More than once, the EcoBoost’s strength made me smile, especially as I left my dad’s driveway to start the day.

A hit back then, a hit now

The Maverick attracted a large following wherever it went. Just like all of the street rods, custom trucks, and muscle vehicles competing in the Nationals. I was eating breakfast at Sheetz in my Virginia home when a curious driver of a Cyber Orange Ford Ranger looked all over the truck. On my approach to the next part of my day. I passed a group of Ford dealership employees at the NSRA Autocross looking over the vehicle. My father and stepmother were impressed by the small pickup. They all essentially asked the same thing: what did I think of the Maverick?

The Bronco Sport Badlands or the Maverick would be my two top picks if I had to sell my 1997 Toyota RAV4. That choice is more difficult to make now that the Maverick is offered with the Tremor package. Which features the torque-vectoring rear drive unit, all-wheel drive system. HOSS off-road suspension stability system from the Badlands. But if I had to choose between the Maverick and the Hyundai Santa Cruz, I’d choose the Maverick.

For starters, even though the Hyundai looks just as good as the Maverick. I don’t like the Tucson’s haptic-sensor center console. The Ford just seems more practical, especially considering its price: the 2022 XL Hybrid’s base MSRP starts at $20,995. While the entire MSRP for my Maverick Lariat First Edition was $36,295.

At the end of the 1960s, Ford produced one of its best compact automobiles with the Maverick. So far, Dearborn has succeeded once more with the new 20s-era compact truck, which also carries the Maverick brand. Will it also be a one-generation phenomenon like the import fighters from the 1970s. Or is a second generation on the horizon? It will depend on time and user desire.


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