Here's How the Unibody 2022 Ford Maverick Compares to the Hyundai Santa Cruz and Honda Ridgeline

The three trucks have more than a few similarities.

Ford/Hyundai/Honda

The unibody 2022 Ford Maverick is now the smallest truck the Blue Oval offers, and that puts it in a class with a growing number of light-duty compact pickups. Primarily, we're talking about the 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz unveiled earlier this year, and the truck that Truck Guys love to hate, the Honda Ridgeline.

None of them can hold that magic 4x8 sheet of plywood with the tailgate up, but for many people, that's just fine. Below, we'll compare the sizes and specifications of all three vehicles to see which one might be best for you. 

Ford

2022 Ford Maverick

  • Price: $19,995 (base, before destination cost)
  • Engine: 2.0-liter turbochared inline-four (2.5-liter naturally-aspirated inline-four hybrid as standard)
  • Power: 250 horsepower | 277 lb-ft of torque (191 horsepower | 155 lb-ft of torque with hybrid powertrain)
  • Dimensions: 199.7 inches long x 72.6 inches wide x 68.7 inches high
  • Wheelbase: 121.1 inches
  • Bed Length: 54 inches with tailgate up | 72 inches with tailgate down
  • Max Towing: 4,000 pounds with towing package (2.0-liter only)
  • Curb Weight: 3,563 pounds with 2.0-liter turbo FWD | 3,731 pounds with 2.0-liter turbo AWD | 3,674 pounds base 2.5-liter hybrid model
  • Fuel Economy: TBA | 40 city (base FWD hybrid estimate)

2021 Honda Ridgeline

  • Price: $37,665 (base)
  • Engine: 3.5-liter naturally-aspirated V6
  • Power: 280 horsepower | 262 lb-ft of torque
  • Dimensions: 210 inches long x 78.5 inches wide x 70.3 inches high
  • Wheelbase: 125.2
  • Bed Length: 63.6 inches tailgate up | 83 inches tailgate down
  • Max Towing: 5,000 pounds
  • Curb Weight: 4,436 pounds
  • Fuel Economy: 18 city | 24 highway | 21 combined

2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz

  • Price: TBA
  • Engine: 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-four (2.5-liter naturally aspirated inline-four offered as standard)
  • Power: 275+ horsepower | 310+ lb-ft of torque (190+ horsepower | 180+ lb-ft of torque)
  • Dimensions: 195.7 inches long x 75 inches wide x 66.7 inches high
  • Wheelbase: 118.3
  • Bed Length: 52.1 inches
  • Max Towing: 5,000 pounds (3,500 with 2.5-liter naturally aspirated inline-four)
  • Curb Weight: TBA
  • Fuel Economy: 19 city | 27 highway | 22 combined (21 city | 27 highway | 23 combined base model)

Here's what we can draw from comparing these specs. The Maverick is down on towing compared to the Santa Cruz by a significant margin. It's off by 1,500 pounds when comparing the base models and 1,000 pounds when pitting max tow variants against one another. It's also slightly longer and taller than the Santa Cruz—the Maverick has a slightly longer 54-inch bed—but narrower. Horsepower between both trims is comparable, but the fuel economy on the base Maverick is impressive; 40 MPG city was the only metric offered by Ford. Economy numbers for other trims were not included. For reference, the EPA rated the Santa Cruz at 21 mpg city, 27 mpg highway, and 23 mpg combined.

As compared to the Ridgeline, the Maverick is significantly lighter and more economical. It's also significantly smaller in every dimension besides height. The Ridgeline's bed length is longer than the Ford's, though; with the tailgate up, it's roughly a 10-inch difference. With the tailgate down the Ridgeline is still in the lead at 83 inches as compared to the Maverick's 72.

The Maverick shines in base trim for its price and fuel economy, but that advantage comes at the expense of towing. Simply put, 2,000 pounds is not much, and economy numbers for the 2.0-liter turbo will likely to be at least similar to the Bronco Sport at 21 mpg combined. If you want to haul 4,000 pounds, you're going to have to spend more on gas. 

The base Maverick really seems ideal as a fleet vehicle with its competitive price, great fuel economy, and 1,500-pound payload capacity. Beyond that, well, it's perhaps odd to think the Santa Cruz is even in the same ballpark, but it definitely is. Hyundai's unconventionally styled pickup is doubtlessly a better machine for towing and its standard bed length is just two inches short of the Maverick's with the tailgate up.

Hyundai

The Ridgeline outshines both of these compact pickups in nearly ever area besides outright torque and fuel economy, but it tows on par with the Santa Cruz, has the biggest bed of the three, and is doubtlessly the most spacious and utilitarian. Its base price of $37,665 is significantly higher than the base Maverick's and it's arguable you're not getting another ~$16,000 worth of car. That will have to be seen when we get our hands on a Maverick to test for ourselves. Really, though, it's a close race between Hyundai's first pickup and Ford's latest compact truck. Neither are meant for hardcore work, but suddenly the compact truck segment is heating up.

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