If you were to look closely at the vehicles recommended by Consumer Reports, the chances are that you would rarely find a pickup in the publication’s best list. That is, reports MotorBiscuit.com, unless the vehicle is Honda’s Ridgeline which has “impressed CR (Consumer Reports) reviewers than any other pickup truck.”
Take A New Look At The List
However, if you take another look now, you will find that the publication has a new pickup on its recommended menu, ” the 2023 Ford Maverick.
Or, as MotorBiscuit.com says: “That’s right. The time has finally come. Consumer Reports has moved on from the ” the Honda Ridgeline to its “new main squeeze.” According to MotorBiscuit.com, “The 2023 Ford Maverick Hybrid outranked every other pickup on Consumer Reports (CR), big and small. The non-hybrid Maverick came next. Then the 2023 Honda Ridgeline.”
Continuing, the motoring website noted that “CR loved the Ridgeline because of its unibody construction, killer reliability, decent gas mileage, and comfortable ride.” Of course, the website noted, these are the credentials CR “is looking for from every vehicle, regardless of segment or intended purpose.”
The Maverick Ticks All The Right Boxes
As the website noted, “Now, we can assume the 2023 Ford Maverick platform has hit all the same beats, and then some since it beat the Honda Ridgeline.”
There are several reasons CR made its choice. First, “the review of the Maverick is a field of green. From fuel economy (combined 37 mpg) to reliability, the Maverick Hybrid brought the house down.”
For example, the MotorBiscuit.com notes, ” the Maverick Hybrid “makes good use of its 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid powerplant by squeezing” out a peppy 191 horsepower. The power is transferred to the front wheels of the front-drive hybrid via a continuously variable transmission (CVT) which makes for “an enjoyable driving experience.”
The 191-horsepower four is standard with the hybrid version of the Maverick, while there is a 2.0-liter turbo four available on the all-wheel-drive version of the compact Ford pickup that turns out 250 horsepower. The MotorBiscuit notes that the turbo four is more powerful than the engine in the Honda Ridgeline. Indeed, while “the Ridgeline has a smoother ride, the Maverick’s suspension holds the cabin down surprisingly well, given its initial stiffness.”
Interior Was A Bit Of A Letdown
MotorBiscuit noted that CR had fewer good things to say about the interior appointments.” Quoting the reviewer, CR noted that “Refinement was clearly not a high priority for the Maverick.” Continuing, CR’s reviewer noted that the cabin can be loud as “wind noise and engine noise seep in with little protection, especially on the highway.” And, “even at low rpm, you can feel some vibrations I the cabin.”
The saving grace apparently is the hybrid version that is “said to be quieter and comfortable. While the interior is utilitarian and practical, it is rife with hard plastics. But that comes with a very usable infotainment interface, large buttons, and simple controls.”
MotorBiscuit notes that not only did Consumer Reports rank the “Hybrid in the first place but also outright tells readers that the Hybrid is the clear choice.” The MotorBiscuit noted, “The only real downside for the Hybrid is that it only comes in FWD. This is a bizarre fact for a pickup truck, but the truth is, many pickup truck drivers never need 4WD anyways. However, if you need AWD, the turbocharged version“ is waiting.
Ford Motor Photo
Marc Stern has been an automotive writer since 1971 when an otherwise normal news editor said, "You're our new car editor," and dumped about 27 pounds of auto stuff on my desk. I was in heaven as I have been a gearhead from my early days. As a teen, I spent the usual number of misspent hours hanging out at gas stations (a big thing in my youth) and working on cars. From there on, it was a straight line to my first column for the paper, "You Auto Know," an enterprise I handled faithfully for 32 years. Not many people know that I also handled computer documentation for a good part of my earnings while writing YAN. My best writing, though, was always in cars. My work has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, etc. You can follow me on: Twitter or Facebook.