A big number, 42, belongs to Ford’s hybrid Maverick trucklet

With a proper shout-out to the great Jackie Robinson, who played his first professional baseball right here in Daytona Beach on Orange Avenue, the number 42 now represents a measure of accomplishment in the automotive world, too. That’s because the newly introduced 2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid – the first pickup offered for sale in North America with a standard all-hybrid powertrain – has been awarded an EPA-certified city fuel economy rating of 42 MPG. With a combined-driving rating of 37 MPG, the Maverick thus has a potential fuel range of more than 500 miles on a single tankful, something that was inconceivable for any pickup until very recently. As you can see, the Maverick may be compact but it’s still definitely a truck, with a cargo bed and a for-real crew cab.

Shown in its available Lariat trim level, the non-hybrid Maverick has just begun reaching customers, with a 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged engine for power. The Maverick Hybrid comes next, fitted with Ford’s generation hybrid powertrain, built around an entirely new 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission, with its lithium-ion battery case mounted in a briefcase-size housing under the rear seat to avoid intrusion into the bed. Ford is already boasting that the Maverick Hybrid will pull better EPA numbers than the baseline 1.5-liter CVT version of the Honda Civic. Ford is so confident about the Maverick Hybrid’s prospects in the marketplace that it expects the entire 2022 production allotment to be reserved by next month.

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