I’ve been able to put about 300 miles on the new Maverick XL and yesterday had to drive to Tyler Texas to have Pro-Liner Coatings apply the bed liner. Beautiful job and I like the shiny finish. Today, I installed the soft roll-up tonneau cover and hood/bug screen and since I’m old it took me about 1 1/2 hours.
I’m very pleased with the overall conservative look of the Maverick and I love the bright Velocity Blue. The black plastic rocker trim, black bed rails, black tonneau cover with black grill kinda frames the blue of the truck. The contrast in black and the Velocity Blue is striking and balances the over look of the truck. Ford’s appealing design hits home with me in all areas and I’ve been surprised at the attention to detail which seems to be unparalleled in lower cost vehicles.
We chose the XL because my wife didn’t like the brown interior of the Lariat and the light multi-tone of the XLT. I’m not sure what I was expecting with the XL Onyx/Graphite color of the XL because photos showing detail of the interior were not clear. The looks of the interior is surprisingly good, especially considering the low cost plastic material used throughout. I love the texture of the top dash material and the ground carbon fibre on the front of the dash. When I first noticed the subtle angular design creases in the right front of the dash I thought it was crimped during installation. The creased design was not apparent in the XL photos and I did not review the XLT or Lariat interior photos enough to notice them. I reviewed the photos and determined they were there on purpose and matched the designed creases in the door panels. It’s un-necessary but it is a good look.
I like the driver’s seat and discovered yesterday it will support comfortably in a long distance road trip. The materials of the seat covers have a nice durable feel, yet they are not uncomfortable to the touch. Dark interiors appeal to me and the two tone onyx/graphite (my description of colors) are a welcomed break from a single color. The varying materials and colors on the door panels and dash are also a nice touch. I was disappointed that Ford did not offer a leather steering wheel for the XL but the materials used are comfortable to touch and easy to grip. All controls are in easy reach of the driver and can be operated with minimal distraction. An oversight on the interior design is the lack of map pockets on the back of the front seats. I don’t like things strapped on the seats or a lot of exposed straps, and given maps are readily available on my wife’s iPhone through Car Play, we’ll leave it as is. We fully intended to purchase Katzkin saddle leather seat covers, arm rests and dash cover, but second thoughts are creeping in because of the pleasing XL interior. We are considering either carbon fibre trim treatments or if they become available maybe an ebony stained rosewood trim.
The 8” screen with the audio is just ok. The Screen looks good and the controls are intuitive and easy to use. I’ve not used my wife’s iPhone with it yet, but I assume the interface with Car Play is typical Apple quality stuff. The audio plays FM music and the system probably doesn’t deteriorate the poor sound of FM music. I have not hooked up our old SiriusXM, from 2005 or so, but I don’t expect great audio quality, but again I like news and sports talk radio. Interestingly, Ford chose to have USB ports for auxiliary audio inputs instead of a mini audio port. I have to get a cable to go from the mini audio to USB to see how our add-on Sirius will work with the 8” screen and audio. Hopefully it will have some control. I have two more SiriusXM add on radios but haven’t found a great place to add them. Because of our age, we probably will keep the XL for a few years so an aftermarket sound and screen system with SiriusXM are not out the question. I would love to have a Bose sound system with maybe a Kenwood screen, etc. We’ll see.
The instrument panel screen is a good size, bright, and feature ladened. The steeling wheel controls for the instrument panel and audio are intuitive and easy to use. Other than cruise, there are plenty of useful and easy to use features.
The AC and heat controls are easy to use and the system works well for me. I can’t think that a more automatic dual control would suit us any better when considering the size of the interior space. I do like the dial shifter on the console but it took a little getting used to the location. At first I kept reaching for the column shifter only to realize it’s not there and look down for the rotary shifter. The rest of the buttons and features on the console are useful, especially the driving mode. The console is laid out well with the availability of the cubbies, shifter, cup holders, and the USB ports.
I’m extremely pleased with the Co-pilot 360 from every aspect. I’ve not tested the collision braking assist, but the lane keeping assist is great. To test, slowly veering toward the empty left turn lane resulted in the lane keeping assist giving me a bright warning on the instrument cluster plus gently guiding the truck back into my lane. Again, with no experience with such systems the quick warnings but gentle responses were excellent. The blind spot warnings on the mirrors are a great feature that I quickly learned to use in traffic. I can see the benefit of the auto stop/start now having driven the XL in heavy traffic and sitting long sequenced traffic lights on the loop around Tyler.
The gas mileage is pretty good. We live on a rural lake and the access road to our house is about 2 1/2 miles at 15 miles an hour. A trip to the local stores and pizza place have very limited speed limits, and the XL averaged about 24 mpg locally. Yesterday, I drove some 75 miles to Mineola TX and back at highway speeds and then another 110 miles to Tyler and around, plus the trip back. This included around 20 miles of considerably heavy traffic with several stop lights on the loop around Tyler. I even stopped at the Tyler Whataburger with the XL idling minimized by the stop/start active. Using Econo driving mode and stop/start activated for the total trip for the day I averaged 30.1 according to the onboard computer. Admittedly, I drove in a manner to save fuel. However, I love to use the Sport mode and it obviously changes things quickly, but makes the XL fun to drive. I’m thinking of an aftermarket intake and JB4 Tuner if the HP gains are anywhere near those advertised. 300 HP or so would be nice to drive, if gas prices go back down.
The ride on highways is great and the suspension reminds me of our 1966 Corvette—ya know, stiff. In fact I love the way the little truck drives and behaves. It just feels like an extremely stable platform. It reminds me of some of my much more expensive muscle cars back in the day, like my ’63 Sport Fury with the 426 cubic inch, 425 HP Max Wedge and the Corvette, except you realize the Maverick is a FWD. But, the FWD pull on accretion is not overbearing like some I have driven in the past. The 2.0 Ecoboost is also responsive, especially in the Sport mode. The steering is responsive as well, and the suspension prevents body sway, which is a feature I really like. Braking is firm and responsive. Again, we haven’t tested the collision or emergency braking yet. Road noise from tires on rough black top is noticeable, so I adjusted the setting for increasing audio volume with increased speed. I do see sound deadening material installation in the near future. But on most of our highways, the road noise is not an issue. I love to drive with the moonroof open and the road noise is not overbearing, either with it raised in the back or fully open. There is a wind buffer when the moonroof is fully open. No noticeable hood flutter as some have reported and I really like the looks of the newly installed hood/bug screen.
Added 11/18/2021: Installed the Ford Soft Tonneau Cover and bug/hood screen yesterday. The Bed cover is very short for the bed it is covering and barely extends from the bed bulkhead to the tailgate only barely overlapping. They provided additional weather stripping but the instructions were not clear. I like the looks ok, but wish I had chosen a trifold my wife picked out. The bug screen was an easy install and unfortunately I got it 1/64" off center. You can't tell but I know.
Another add: We picked the truck up on 11/10 late in the afternoon and it turned dark before we got home. It was my first experience with the auto dimming headlights since my 1953 Chrysler Winsor Convertible with the big ol' honking pedestal on the dash with a oval shaped sensor. The auto dimming headlights and rear view mirror worked well and is just another convenience for us old guys.
Yes there is some equipment on both the XLT and Lariat I would love to have, especially the wheels, cruise control, and SiriusXM. And, after adding cruise control, SiriusXM, security system, co-pilot 360, trailer hitch, moonroof, Remote start Fob, tonneau cover and spray in bed liner we will end up paying as much for the XL as a lower cost XLT. Again, we just could not deal with the XLT interior colors.
Obviously, overall I’m very pleased with our choice. The overall cost of the XL was a consideration for purchase, however the XLT and Lariat were in our budget range for a new vehicle. Our last new vehicle was a 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan for my wife and it was in the same price range, however included several features Ford chose not to include on the XL. I especially like the UConnect Audio/Screen/SiriusXM/iPod/Phone interface of the Dodge. But, considering all, I have to give Ford Kudos for the Maverick XL.
Another add 11/18/2021: Since I'm retired I decided I needed a hobby that I could physically accomplish so I started writing. I've published three books and ready to publish another in December. Three of them are religious and one is a patriotic booklet. If interested in such subject matter you can see a recap of them at my website https://www.hchaney.com. The books are widely available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, Walmart, Draft2Digital, and most bookstores. The digital booklet, Old Glory, is a free download at Barnes & Noble, Apple and other websites. Unfortunately, the digital version is $0.99 on Amazon, which is their minimum. You can send me a message from the website.