It might be related to a Focus, but the 2022 Ford Maverick looks more like a shrunken F-Series.
TFLTruck shared photos of the unibody ute being filmed for a TV commercial in San Diego.
The photos reveal a ute that has the bluff styling you’d expect on a full-sized pickup truck.
While perspective can be tricky, it looks virtually the same size as the last-generation, large Explorer crossover being used as a camera rig.
Ford has yet to release any details on the Maverick, though its name was revealed in an earlier leak.
Of those vehicles, it bears the closest resemblance to the Bronco Sport with its bluff front and chunky, purposeful looks.
Neither the Bronco Sport nor the more rugged, unrelated Bronco have been confirmed for Australia, so it’s unclear if the Maverick will ever find its way to local showrooms.
It’s likely the Maverick will carry over the Bronco Sport’s powertrain options.
The mid-sized SUV is powered by a 1.5-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine with 135kW of power and 260Nm of torque.
A larger turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine is also available, making 183kW of power and 373Nm of torque.
Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
In contrast, the North American Ranger uses a turbocharged 2.3-litre petrol four-cylinder engine producing 201kW of power and 420Nm of torque.
The Maverick will also likely have a lower payload than the Ranger and less off-road ability, though there may be some off-road equipment available like the Bronco Sport’s G.O.A.T. (Go Over Any Terrain) off-road modes.
In North America, the Maverick will slot beneath the body-on-frame Ranger and potentially serve as a rival to the upcoming, unibody Hyundai Santa Cruz.
This genre of utes is often referred to in American media as “lifestyle trucks”. While not unibody, Ford previously sold a “lifestyle”-type model with the old Ford Explorer Sport Trac.
Much like Australia, North American ute buyers prefer body-on-frame vehicles.
The Honda Ridgeline is currently the only unibody ute available there and has always been a niche player, while past offerings like the Subaru Baja have sunk without a trace.