Ford said it’s targeting entry-level sedan buyers as well as shoppers who might otherwise choose a midsize pickup or crossover. The Maverick will be geared toward younger millennials and women, according to marketers.
It will square off against Hyundai’s Santa Cruz compact pickup, which will beat the Maverick to market this summer.
Cox Automotive, which surveyed 270 consumers in March, found that 51 percent of respondents had very favorable views of the Maverick, followed by 42 percent for the Santa Cruz. The study found cargo space, fuel efficiency and price were the top three purchase considerations.
Some of those customers, officials hope, are already in the Ford family but no longer have a Fiesta, Focus, Fusion or Taurus to choose from.
“That was probably one of the main strategic rationales for Maverick: the desire to retain those customers,” Zack Nakos, Maverick product marketing manager, told Automotive News. “Many are at that point where their trade cycle is ending and they’re coming back to the showroom. There will always be people who don’t want a truck, but we feel there will be enough people who say, ‘OK, price point, fuel economy, storage. … I didn’t really know I needed a truck, but I need this one.’ There are some car owners we think will readily adopt this.”