If you heard that the Ford Maverick hybrid production had been halted, the rumors are likely true. Maybe. Ford Motor Co. sent a bulletin to dealers that made its way through Maverick enthusiast websites and social media groups this week, stating hybrid orders for the compact pickup truck will no longer be selected for scheduling until further notice. To us, that makes it appear as though Ford has temporarily halted production of the hybrid variant, and this would affect First Edition trucks, which are hybrid-only Lariat models.
So, we reached out to Ford for confirmation and received the following reply: “We are excited that both the Maverick hybrid and EcoBoost will soon be on its way to dealer showrooms, and customers can currently order both trucks from their local dealer. As with any of our vehicles, we continuously adjust production to match demand with parts availability.”
Which actually raises more questions. But Dawn McKenzie, Ford spokesperson for the Maverick, said: “We’re building Maverick First Editions today and will continue to build them through the 2022 model year, as planned.”
Thus, the overall answer to whether Ford halted production of the hybrid is unclear. Dealers just can’t “schedule” it right now.
We asked Ford for an explanation of the “parts availability” issue with the hybrid engine that doesn’t impact the EcoBoost, and the automaker has yet to comment. However, Ford has been walloped with production delays as it relates to the Ford F-150 and Bronco due to Covid-19 and the now infamous microchip shortage. Maverick could be the next victim.
Another bit of news from the same dealer bulletin indicates that the front-wheel-drive (FWD) Maverick will longer be available with the Trailer Tow Package (53Q). This leaves only the all-wheel-drive (AWD) Maverick with the trailer tow package, which is rated up to 4,000 pounds.
This is certainly not great news for those who may have already placed their orders. FWD towing is popular amongst enthusiasts and as a better fuel economy option. It will surely be disappointing to some people.
We reached out to Ford to confirm the deletion of the FWD tow package, but we have yet to hear back from them about this either.
Few vehicles charged up a fan base more than the Maverick. Introducing a small truck into a new, emerging segment, where only the Hyundai Santa Cruz exists as a competitor represents a golden opportunity for Ford to capitalize on a younger truck buyer.
This truck buyer seems to have fuel economy near the top the priority list. And with an estimated 40 MPG rating, the Maverick’s hybrid power plant is appealing — as is the $20k base pricing. If there’s yet another glitch in Ford’s production, it would represent another bump along the way for Ford, which has been hit hard with production problems — most of which are out of their control.
Launching a new 14th-generation F-150 with microchip shortages, a hard top issue with the highly anticipated Ford Bronco and now a “parts availability” option for the hybrid Maverick, it hurts the consumer trust for Ford buyers. Many of these buyers are first time shoppers to the Blue Oval, and certainly delays like this can leave a bad taste in their mouth.
I realize — and hopefully so do those who’ve placed orders — manufacturing is tough right now. It requires patience and understanding. And, frankly, Maverick seems worth the wait.