By on April 16, 2021

Ford

Small pickups aren’t so small anymore. The trucks we today consider mid-size have dimensions that aren’t far off the smallest full-size trucks from the 1990s.

Enter Ford. And soon, Hyundai.

While the Santa Cruz may be the star of the moment, thanks to finally being shown in the flesh after a long tease, the Ford Maverick may actually be the driving force (pun very much intended) behind any future growth in small trucks.

At least in part. The Maverick is an important product to be sure, and its impending arrival probably has forced other automakers to take notice. But it all starts with the growth of full-size trucks, in both size and price.

In other words, if the F-150s of the world hadn’t gotten so big and expensive, the Maverick might not have an opportunity.

We don’t know a lot, in terms of specs, about the Maverick so far, though we know it might have an FX4 trim (usually meant to signify off-road performance) and that it will be narrower, lower, and smaller than the Ranger.

It may also have front-wheel drive and a coil-spring, twist-beam rear suspension that bears similarity to what’s on offer in Ford’s Transit Connect van. All-wheel-drive is a likely possibility.

Size-wise, it may be comparable to the Bronco Sport. Look for unibody construction and a crew-cab configuration.

Although Hyundai took the wraps off the Santa Cruz this week, the Maverick is expected to also be on sale for the 2022 model year. Which means we could see it before the end of 2021.

Santa Cruz

That also means that there may be more mini-trucks on the way — trucks that are smaller than the current crop of mid-sizers.

We could spend all day speculating on what other brands might do. There are the realistic guesses — could Volkswagen bring the Tarok here? Then there are wilder guesses — what if Subaru brought back the Baja?

Indeed, one analyst we spoke to thought the small-truck market could follow the lead of the crossovers.

“The pickup market has gone haywire in terms of both size and pricing. Small trucks became mid-size trucks while full-size trucks have gotten bigger than ever. In step with that, new pickups in general have become much less affordable as their size and content have increased,” Ed Kim, vice president, industry analysis at AutoPacific, told us.

Bronco

“I strongly believe there is a significant market for true compact pickups, especially new unit-body models like Santa Cruz and Maverick that blend good capability with a refined CUV-like drive character. These trucks will be more affordable than today’s mid-size models and will also no doubt bring advantages in drive refinement and fuel economy. Their unit-body construction also means they will likely have interiors that are at least as spacious as larger body-on-frame mid-size pickups. Considering that most retail pickup buyers actually use their trucks just like cars, smaller unit-body trucks could really find an audience in the same way unit-body crossover SUVs found an audience over two decades ago, and now represent the vast majority of SUVs today,” Kim said.
Only time will tell, but we tend to agree. After all, small trucks like the Maverick or Santa Cruz could prove to be a good solution for homeowners who rarely tow or use their bed, but do so juuuust enough that they decide they need a truck.
Say hello to the newest class of the automotive market. Leave it to a Maverick to start a trend.
[Images: Ford, Hyundai]
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57 Comments on “How Ford is Bringing Back the Small Pickup...”


  • avatar
    ajla

    “if the F-150s of the world hadn’t gotten so big and expensive”

    Why did they get big and expensive?

    I don’t think there is going to be much overlap here with the full-size and mid-size segments because current truck buyers *want* their vehicles to be large and powerful and put more emphasis on ground clearance/off-roading than bed access.

    3-4 size classes can co-exist in other segments so I don’t see why it can’t be the case for trucks.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      Are they even actually “big and expensive”, outside of the stacked models that rich people buy, or that autojournos get to test?

      The base F150 is just over $28k here, with incentives, for a standard cab shortbed.

      The cheapest F150 in 1991, 30 years ago, was $11k, which is $21k in adjusted dollars (and I can’t find deal information from 1991, so I’m assuming no cash on the hood), also for a standard cab shortbed.

      So the real price went up $7k or so in today’s money, which is, to be fair “more expensive”.

      But equally the new base F150 has twice the horsepower of the anemic 1991 model (and a bit more torque, from a significantly smaller engine), and vastly improved fuel economy (21 combined vs. 16).

      The new one is 5″ taller, .9″ wider, and has a 6″ longer wheelbase, and is a whole foot longer. Curb weight seems more or less the same., and payload is 300# higher.

      So, yeah, it’s “bigger”, but … mostly “bulkier looking” rather than actually being More Gianter in any important way, if you’re not trying to park it downtown?

      12″ longer isn’t all that significant on an OAL of 197″.

      And the increased cost gets you, well, a far better truck than that of 1991.

      (That said, I agree there’s room for more diversity in trucks.

      Just not sure how many people actually care about bed height; I suspect the fleet users would be the ones who’d most care … AND they also have the size to actually get a lower truck made for their segment.

      But that has not happened, probably because they don’t actually care that much?)

  • avatar
    dal20402

    This seems like a totally natural evolution. Pickups have grown both longer and taller, partly because they are now daily-use vehicles that need a crew cab for full functionality, and partly because they have gotten to be more about macho posturing than functionality. Even today’s midsize pickup is unlikely to fit in a standard garage or a city parking spot. But trucks are hot and there’s no reason people who need a smaller vehicle wouldn’t want it to be a truck.

    For the tasks that trucks in this class will be expected to do, FWD-based AWD and a unibody platform seem 100% appropriate.

  • avatar
    quaquaqua

    Considering what my daily parking/driving situation is like, I would have never considered a pickup truck due to how big they are. Now I’m considering one. This is an experiment that needs to happen.

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    I want my small pickup truck with two doors – not four.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      Yup. Going to the hardware store? “Sorry dear, I can’t bring the kids and mother-in-law on a side trip.” This is why the Ranchero and El Camino were so popular. Speaking of which, when are we going to see new versions of those?

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        That is what these are, pickups based on a CUV that is based on a car. Ford really should have called theirs a Ranchero and the Bronco Sport should have been the one to get the Maverick name.

    • 0 avatar
      Pig_Iron

      Sick to death of this crew cab madness.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    There are pictures of the Ford Maverick with very little camo and one side by side with a Ranger. The Maverick is noticeably smaller but it will still be longer than many would think because of the crew cab only even with a smaller bed. I too would like to see a 2 door extended cab offered but I doubt that will ever happen. I have to see both the Maverick and Santa Cruz in person to see if it would work for me.

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    People are trying so hard not to admit that what they really want is a STATIONWAGON! One with a fold down tailgate to make one long unobstructed load floor that’s actually long enough to be useful. Personally I’d love a real stationwagon, but it’s got to have the roll down rear window and a fold down tail gate. NOT a hatch back.
    What an awesome ride that would be!

    • 0 avatar
      Yankee

      I’m with you Imagefont! Maybe with some white spoke steel wheels like the old Subarus! Sadly, the automakers know there is a difference between what consumers need and what they will buy. A nice simple wagon would be perfect for all kinds of do-it-yourselfers and new homeowners, but they think their image is better in a “truck,” regardless of how fast and loose automakers are playing with the idea. That new Hyundai is nice looking, sure. But wouldn’t w wagon make more more sense because you’re obviously buying bagged mulch with that thing anyway. Never forget the time a guy with a Ford Explorer Sport Trac showed up at the nursery and asked to get a load of mulch. The front loader operator told him he’d end up dumping it all over his roof trying to get anything in that thing. A good laugh was had by all – except the poor sap in the Sport Trac, who drove away with an empty bed (no doubt on his way to Lowes to buy bags).

    • 0 avatar
      Sobro

      I would prefer the tailgate to slide into the lower body, fold down, or swing open. My Yukon Denali has a near useless hatch window that opens but it’s so high you can’t reach over the sill to get to the load floor and with the trailer hooked up the hatch hits the trailer jack.

    • 0 avatar
      DungBeetle62

      Finally saw a Buick Regal TourX in the wild today. God, that was a good-looking ride. Won’t have me replacing the Miata with it but I can’t fathom why it was so sales-proof.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        TourX owner here. Yes, good looking, practical, useful with a 40 plus cubic foot cargo area with the seats UP, 70 cubic ft with the seats down. And decently quick with a sub 7 sec 0-60 and under 15 in the quarter mile.

        Sales proof, well… I think the MSRP scared off a few buyers although you could get $10K off just by asking nicely. Station wagons aren’t “cool” and most women wouldn’t be caught dead in one (remember Buick has the highest percentage of female buyers right now.) The 3rd strike was that right before productions started at the Opel factory in Russelsheim Germany, Opel was sold to PSA (now Stellantis). Having a competitor build one of your vehicles under contract and then shipping that vehicle across the ocean is gonna hurt your profits. Lots of speculation that GM was just looking to fulfill its contractual obligations with the TourX/Regal Sportback and then get the heck out.

    • 0 avatar
      wolfwagen

      Absolutely!
      I would love a pickup, but the prices of even used pick-ups are astronomical.
      I have a love of station wagons ever since I was little (i actually convinced my parents to buy our first station wagon when I was 9 years old). As much as I like the Buick Regal Tour X and some of the European wagons (which are pushing into Pick up truck prices) What I really want is an old 1981 Ford Granda wagon modified with a 300 Inline six and 5-speed manual

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      So, you want a wagon, but one in a configuration nobody’s made in … decades on decades, I guess?

      You could get a used Roadmaster tomorrow if you didn’t demand a full fold back, rather than a half-and-half, and stopped pretending a roll-down window was really a dealbreaker.

      (Me, I *own* a station wagon, an XC70, but I don’t pretend I want either of those features.

      If I need to carry lumber, that’s what the roof rack is for.)

  • avatar
    EBFlex

    This is laughable. 10 years ago Ford stopped making the (proper) Ranger because ‘people will just buy a Fiesta or Focus instead’. Ford said there was no point in bringing the ROW Ranger here (which they finally brought that “new for 2012” here in 2019) because it was too close in size to the F-150 and people would just buy the F-150 instead.

    Now we are getting another Escape with a different body vehicle because Ford is insistent that what we need, right now, is another (overpriced) pickup truck.

    This company is a ship without a rudder. Only by severe mismanagement do you go from “small pickup truck buyers will just buy a small car instead” to “lets cancel all cars and build smaller pickups”.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      It was a bad call but they weren’t the only ones to make it. Markets change also. The SUV boom was still crazy hot, plus CUVs are now getting old, along with wagons. Midsize pickups compete with many segments.

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        “It was a bad call but they weren’t the only ones to make it.”

        Without a shadow of a doubt was it extremely boneheaded to cancel the Ranger in 2011. A simple powertrain upgrade would have done wonders and is really all it needed. They could have freshened it up a bit in the interior and the nose/tail but swapping engines to 3.7 n/a V6 with a 6-speed (basically the base F150 powertrain) would have made for a very nice vehicle. The price would have been kept very low as well.

        But to say that the Ranger buyers will just buy compact cars and then in a few years cancel those very compact cars and bring back the Ranger you said would never work here is a clear example of very ineffective and confused leadership.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          That’s what they said, but the truth may be far more sinister. Like they needed the plant to assemble Explorers for example.

          A lot of things automakers do don’t make sense to us. Stockholders are just concerned with quick returns and don’t look at the over all picture, long money, etc, etc.

          We still don’t know why competing automakers killed their midsize trucks. Or others neglect them to the point of irrelevance.

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            The plant making the Ranger was quickly demolished after production stopped.

            It’s just nice to be proven right by the very same entity that was saying we were so wrong for being upset the Ranger was being cancelled. Everyone but Ford knew it was a bad idea and here we are…8 years later the Ranger comes back and 10 years later there’s even a smaller pickup that’s about to hit the scene.

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          If I remember correctly, a simple powertrain upgrade wasn’t an option. The truck couldn’t pass modern safety regulations. At the time engineering a new truck wasn’t a worthwhile investment.

          I have owned 4 Rangers (85, 88, 91 and a 93). I do miss them but they did stick with the compact longer than anyone else so I’m not sure why they get all the hate here.

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            I don’t buy it. What goes on top of the frame can be made to pass anything as the frame is the most expensive part. It could have easily been done, Ford is either incapable or just lazy.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            Yeah that’s just not true guy.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            Yeah that’s just not true guy. Curious though, we know in Ford’s case it was boneheaded leadership when they were the last to leave the compact pickup market…so what was it when GM, Toyota, Nissan and Dodge (in the 80s in Dodges case…they were the first to go midsized) left?

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            What killed it was the stability control mandate. With dropping volume in the segment it wasn’t worth developing something for an already long in the tooth design.

            The only reason it made sense to bring back the Ranger is that they could bring back the Bronco on the same production line and have the volume to make it profitable.

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            If they can develop stability control for the E-Series then the Ranger should have been a no brainer. It’s small sensors and a computer.

            It’s sheer incompetence. Nothing more

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            As usual you don’t follow along well EB. No one said they couldn’t develop a system for it just that it was not a good investment on an old vehicle in a shrinking segment.

            The E-Series was a different business case that did warrant the investment.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            In the grander scheme, regardless of reasons, it’s no big loss, if at all.

            Midsize pickups aren’t huge revenue sources. There may be a few more reasons we’ll ever hear about (its death), but if the midsize pickup market hadn’t turned around, the Ranger would likely still be absent.

            The old Ranger lived on thanks to a its ancient bones. You’ll notice the extremely long platform cycles of midsize pickups. It’s for a very good reason.

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            “ As usual you don’t follow along well EB.”

            Believe me I’m following along just fine. The segment wasn’t dying.

            Nissan had the Fromtier, Toyota had the Tacoma, GM had the Colorado which took a three year break for North America but was reintroduced in 2014. Three years after Ford cancelled the Ranger.

            Ford had two option that were easily accomplished but did require a little effort. First they could have updated the Ranger as it was with a new powertrain, stability control and a few visual upgrades to carry it a couple years until the global Ranger was ready. Ford could have introduced the global Ranger in 2014 as GM did with their small truck. Or they could have made the minimal investment to keep the 2011 Ranger around until the minor changes to the global Ranger were made to allow it to be sold here.

            Ford chose the path of least resistance telling small truck buyers to go buy a Fiesta or a Focus. Brilliant.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @EBFlex again you just don’t follow along well. I didn’t say dying I said shrinking, two different things.

            Sure they could have done those things but they didn’t think the math added up. So they decided to sit out the segment until a time where the math was better.

        • 0 avatar
          el scotto

          @ EBFlex I had an extended cab XLT 4wd Ranger with the 4.0 V-6. Ford would’ve priced a 3.7 Ranger to cost as much as an F-150 XL. The top of the line Rangers weren’t cheap. The Ranger we got is based on global platform. A mid-sized truck for NA is huge for the rest of the world.

    • 0 avatar
      wjtinfwb

      I think you could agree the market has shifted considerably in that 10 year period. Trucks, while always a big part of the domestics portfolio have become the sedan of the current day, you could argue the crew cab F-150 replaces the Crown Vic and Taurus in the Ford people mover line-up. In hindsight, not having a new Ranger waiting in the wings was a mistake, but Ford was able to close some of that gap with discounted F-150s. FCA similarly dropped the Dakota, opting to develop the Dart/200 instead. They also didn’t read the tea leaves well. GM hung in there with the previous generation Colorado, a half-baked effort to replace the S-10 but at least they had something. I’d love to see Ford bring a few cars back into their line-up, Focus for sure, perhaps a Fusion replacement or a rear-drive sedan based on the Explorer bones, but in today’s marketplace hard to blame an automaker for investing heavily in trucks and to a lesser extent, vans.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Ford as I recall went though a near death experience in the mid 00s and then we had 2008. That is why Econoline, Ranger and Panther continued far past their sell dates – existing amortized profit centers. I’m sure Ford would have liked to have a Ranger prepared but given the circumstance its not surprising. FCA dropped the ball with Dakota, but their product planners in 2009/10 probably predicted a boom in fuel efficient vehicles (there may have been influence from the Obama Admin as well there). GM was resuscitated in 2009, and the limited funds were not put into a viable Colorado until much later it seems.

    • 0 avatar
      phreshone

      Don’t forget that was the era of the 179 tax deduction… which allowed the 1st year tax write off of about $45000 of the price of a new 6000+ lb truck/suv… if you ran a small business, or had a small side business (say repair work/maintenance) you could buy a $60,000 truck, Ford/GM/Dodge/Toyota would finance you it at 0% for 72 months, and you would get a $45000 tax deduction year one, ($15k year 2) against your income, while only being out of pocket $10,000 (max) that first year…

      With those economics, even if your business only needed a Ranger, you buy the Full Sized every day…

      That tax benefit is gone, so now buying a properly sized truck is economically justifiable/prudent…

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    When are these silly automakers gonna start asking consumers what they want? They keep forcing these oversized/overpriced mid and fullsize pickups onto unsatisfactory buyers!

    Maybe they might start actually selling some. Huh?

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      The mid-size segment disappeared for years. The question is why? Did the demand drop? or was the lack of choice what forced people into other vehicles? The full-size market exploded… once again why – chicken or egg? I doubt it was due to practicality and more likely due to big trucks being “cool” and “in style”. Vehicle purchases rarely follow logic. If people only bought what they needed sports cars wouldn’t exist.

      The question is this new sub-mid-size market a shift in trends or just a blip on the radar. I never wanted a full size truck and have been holding onto my Dakota for years waiting for something smaller to come along. Sure I could have bought an older Ranger or S10 but between the safety, tech and mileage that would have been a terrible decision. I want a modern mini-truck – and now it appears between the Santa Cruz and the Maverick I have two to choose from. If I stay mid-size then I have the Ranger, Frontier and Tacoma as well. Lots of choice is good when it comes to consumer products.

  • avatar
    OnE715

    If I could buy a brand new copy of my ’90 Toyota Hilux 4×4 today I’d so it in a heartbeat. Best truck I’ve ever driven…fairly crude but not punishing, with its 22re 4 cylinder and 5 speed manual it wasn’t quick but it was enough. With its 100% manual lockout hubs and transfer case I could be driving along the interstate at 70 with the hubs locked in anticipation of slippery conditions, and if I ran into an icy area I could just let off the throttle and flip the transfer case lever forward with 1 finger and engage 4wd. It got usually 20 mpg, 19 with the hubs locked…even with its tired old 180k mile engine. If only its body and frame hadn’t rusted out…

  • avatar
    nrd515

    At least the new smaller trucks won’t be the deathtraps the Courier/B2000/Luv, etc were back 40+ yearsago. A woman I worked with driving her Courier got hit by a drunk in a Camaro and the Courier folded up like a hunk of aluminum foil and her right foot was basically severed, held on by her Achilles Tendon and the artery going to her foot. They managed to sew her leg all back together, and eventually, it worked well enough she was able to drive without any pain. She never walked right again. Sadly, she died of Covid a couple of months ago.

    A friend of a friend had a Luv and was taking his brother home from work and was hit by a late ’70’s Cutlass at about 30 MPH. The brother was severely injured and the driver had a broken leg, the firewall folded up like it did in the Courier, but didn’t partially amputate his foot, it just broke his leg. The Luv was replaced with a Silverado 1500 as soon as he got the cast off his leg. No more tiny vehicles for him.

  • avatar

    Farley continues to impress me.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I wish both companies well and hope these products stick around for several model years and even possibly get 2nd generations.

    I encourage all of you who haven’t go to watch The Fast Lane (TFL) and Alex on Autos takes on the Santa Cruz (both on YouTube). The gentlemen in the videos are 6 ft or a bit over 6 ft and them walking around the Santa Cruz gives good size perspective. Roman even got in the back seat to show how he fit with the driver’s seat set for him.

    I think the Santa Cruz is “just right” sized and I liked that you could look over the top of the vehicle unlike just about any truck on the road today whether 4×4 or 4×2. I’m a shade under 5’11” and I can see over my TourX of course but not over the roof of my wife’s 2016 Terrain. The Santa Cruz being low implies a low COG which should make it more pleasant to drive on a daily basis from a handling standpoint. Spy shots I’m seeing of the Maverick make it look like it’s as tall as a Ranger.

    I’m too young to ever have had the chance to purchase a “ute” brand new but I look forward to these new options.

    • 0 avatar
      EBFlex

      The biggest advantage of the Hyundai is the tow rating. Was not expecting that.

      I don’t see the Escape pickup being that high. The Escape has a max tow rating of 3,500 pounds and the boxy version of the Escape has a max tow rating of ~2200 pounds.

      Hopefully Ford can match the Hyundai but I’m not optimistic.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        In fairness the Tucson that the Hyundai is based on maxes out at 2000 per my quick googling so I wouldn’t be so sure. The short wheelbase of both of those vehicles likely comes into play for tow rating.

    • 0 avatar
      Wheatridger

      I generally prefer vehicles that are within a few inches of my own height (66″).

      Today’s kingsized pickups are a status symbol, but are they really made for work? Who wants to lift a hundred shovelfuls of dirt or a heavy implement above waist height to load it in a truck bed? The real message of these symbols, I believe, is “I don’t have to do work. I have people for that.”

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        It depends. Heavy, bulky items are easier to on/off load, carried above the waist, back arched back, verse stooped forward (below the waist). It also puts the bed where thieves can’t see the expensive tools, equipment, goods, etc, in it. It looks like any empty truck. There’s ground clearance advantages too.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Right-sized is right on!

      The Santa Cruz fell off my radar because it was years ago they teased it and I assumed it was an under-powered FWD CUV thing. But with AWD and the same power as the Ranger it has suddenly jumped to the top of my Dakota Quad Cab replacement list. Based on the videos it appears to be the size my Dakota on the inside and the size of my old Ranger Splash on the outside. If true then it is full of win and will be perfect for me. I’m sick of bigger, I like smaller vehicles, even my C7 ‘Vette is huge compared to old 350Z and Prelude Si.

      My use case is towing am estimated 2,500lb rig (16 foot boat) in flat Florida. I don’t need off road ground clearance. I don’t haul plywood or sheet rock. I like having a bed for odd shaped items and a place to put messy things like mulch. In 20 years of pickup ownership the biggest things I’ve hauled were exercise equipment (treadmill / elliptical), lawn and garden stuff and household items (chairs, coffee table). I’ve also hauled kayaks but those exceed the bed lenght of any pickup. Once, just once I had a bed full of plywood and it was no problem with the tailgate down. I don’t understand how plywood because this unit of measure that determine a truck’s value.

      It will be interesting to see which engine, transmission and tow rating the Maverick gets. Based on spy shots it looks like Ford made it very truck-like looking which kills some of the aero advantage of going with a UTE style Hyundai picked with the Santa Cruz. I don’t want a boxy vehicle but realize many do. I find the Santa Cruz very attractive looking.

      The main turn off I have with the Ranger is how high up it is. The bed height is ridiculous! At 6’ even and 50 years old I don’t want to be lifting things up that high. Overall the Ranger is big compared to my Dakota, its almost like 3/4 full-size. I want something that is more like 1/2 full-size. The Santa Cruz seems to have that sweet spot.

  • avatar
    JD-Shifty

    I now have 525,000 on my 96 S-10 longbed. They were made too good.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    If a thief wants to steal something in the bed of a truck they are going to steal it regardless of the bed height. It is ridiculous that many trucks require steps to get into the bed and that one cannot reach over the side of the bed. Also there are many who cannot even park a full size truck or even maneuver them. Glad that people have a choice to buy what they want but many of these drivers need driving lessons on how to drive large pickups especially the 3/4 to 1 tons. For those who cannot drive them they are a menace on the road. Maybe there should be a CDL requirement for those driving a 3/4 to 1 ton truck since many who buy these have no experience driving them.

    I like this truck even though it has a small bed. I especially like the retractable bed cover and the bed storage. I agree with many who don’t like the touch screen only with no buttons or knobs but I could even live without that. Hyundai put a lot of thought into the Santa Fe and for what it is it will meet the needs of most people but it will not be liked by hardcore truck enthusiasts but then those enthusiasts have lots of choice.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      Yeah but short thieves will just look for a lower truck.. It’s like the manual transmission thing.

      No what I meant was thieves first have to know it’s there. Yes it’s not as convenient as having the bed rails at waist level instead of higher or near armpits, but then we would be dealing with other problems.

      I don’t mind at all, it’s worth the little extra effort. But clearly automakers are just following buyer/user demands. That doesn’t mean anyone specifically asked for higher trucks (verse ’70s half tons, mini trucks), but it’s the natural evolution, bigger brakes, bigger wheels, minimal ground clearance, etc, etc.

      Likewise they demand a CUV based pickup, but we’ll see if they actually buy it.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Manufacturers are more likely to follow what dealers want since the dealers are their customers. As for CUV based trucks if the dealers sell enough of them then they will order more from the manufacturers thus demand will increase. It remains to be seen how successful this class of CUV based truck will be but I might consider a Santa Fe for myself even though I swore I would not buy another crew cab truck. I like the Sante Fe and its optional sliding bed cover along with the storage. I even like the green color. With a bed extender it could work for me.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    B&B, there are no V-8 RWD Bonnevilles, Coupe Devilles, or Crown Victorias. They are as dead as the dodo. Full size, crew cab pick ups have replaced them. Year in and year out GM, Ford, and Stellantis sell the best selling vehicles in North America. Those manufacturers can bale the money they make off full size trucks. When the Maverick does finally appear, the B&B will come up with 4,398 reasons not to buy one/what is wrong with it. The Maverick will be like the Transit Connect and sell to small businesses for deliveries. Like the Transit Connect I’m calling an 80/20 split commercial/personal use.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      If the Maverick uses the Connect’s rear suspension then the Santa Cruz has a leg up due to having an independent rear setup. That will clearly move it towards a more commercial vs personal use case. It may tow more but at the cost of handling. One of the downsides to a pickup is its on road handling characteristics. If I move to something more car or CUV-like in size then I want car like handling too. My parents Ford Escape drives 10X better then my Dakota but can something on this scale still haul a trailer well?

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        It appears that the 2wd versions will get the TC’s beam axle out back but the 4wd which is how I expect many if not most of the retail units will be configured, will have the Escape/Bronco Sport IFS.

        We’ll have to wait and see how much the Maverick will be rated for the Hyundai can be configured to tow 5k, or more than base full size and less than full size trucks of yesteryear.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    @el scotto–Disagree small business delivery will not buy a crew cab pickup with a 48 inch bed. If the Maverick were offered in a regular or extended cab the delivery services would be all over it. Ford has already said the Maverick will only be offered in a crew cab. I might be interested in either the Maverick or the Santa Fe but I would have to see both and drive both. I will not buy any vehicle until I drive it.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Sure some will buy it for delivery, I’m thinking auto parts stores for one. Yeah they would like a regular or extended cab but the Maverick is going to be the cheapest pickup so they are not going to spend more to get a Super Cab Ranger. A lot of the parts ride in the cab anyway.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    The only way that delivery services would buy a Maverick if it is considerably cheaper than a base Colorado or Tacoma. If the Maverick in at a considerably cheaper then maybe. Many of the delivery services use Colorados, Tacomas, or Chevy Spark with Spark being the cheapest. You can buy a base Tacoma with a rear seat delete for around 24k.

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