Back in May, a legit-looking rendering of an apparently small pickup truck tailgate with the name “Maverick” stamped on it began circulating around the web. Even though the CAD (computer-aided design) rendering looked real enough, we weren’t ready to go all-in on the theory that Ford’s upcoming compact truck would be called Ford Maverick (other names, such as Courier, seemed just as likely). Now, we’re a bit more convinced, as that exact CAD design appears to have made it to the pre-production prototype stage.
In a photo leaked to Motor1 by an anonymous source, you can clearly see that same tailgate design we saw a couple of month back, only now it’s stamped into an honest-to-goodness metal tailgate skin. The font matches what we’ve seen on other Ford trucks, such as the Ranger and recently revealed Ford Bronco SUV, and the overall tailgate’s size relative to the indentation for the Blue Oval emblem suggests this piece is pretty small.
As we’ve previously reported, Ford’s upcoming compact pickup truck will be based on the same unibody platform underpinning the Ford Focus, which is no longer sold in the U.S. The front-drive-based truck, originally thought to be called Courier or Ranchero, will slot beneath the Ranger in the truck lineup and also fill the gap left by the abandoned Focus Activ crossover wagon. Looks-wise, we’ve heard the compact truck will inherit design cues from its body-on-frame Ranger sibling, and won’t look anything like the Brazil-made Ford Courier sold in other markets. Judging by this tailgate, that intel sounds about right.
We’re excited to see what the Ford Maverick ends up looking like, but unless the leaks continue (which is possible), we might have to wait a while. The compact pickup isn’t expected to arrive until 2022.