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The Maverick has quickly become one of the most popular trucks in America. The $20,000 compact truck checks most boxes for people looking for a small pickup to drive daily. In addition, appealing features like the standard hybrid powertrain with excellent fuel economy make it irresistible. However, did you know that a few alternatives check nearly all the same boxes? Plus, it’s almost impossible to buy a 2022 Ford Maverick because of production problems. Here are two great Ford Maverick alternatives for under $30,000.

Why do you need a Ford Maverick alternative?

A red Ford Maverick is an excellent compact truck for under $30,000.
Ford Maverick | Ford

If you’re in the market for a 2022 or 2023 Ford Maverick, good luck. Not only did the 2022 model year sell out instantly, but the automaker is also still backed up on production. Moreover, original reservation holders are still waiting on their new Maverick. As a result, preordering a 2023 Ford Maverick is next to impossible. They’re coming and going so quickly that most people don’t have a chance. Luckily there are a few other options if you’re upset about Mavericks being unavailable.

Instead of the new compact truck from Ford, opt for something with similar capability. For example, a similarly-sized truck with excellent fuel economy. While none match the mpg of the Maverick, there’s one that comes close. In addition, Ford’s lineup of trucks contains many other options, one of which is readily available. Plus, the standard equipment is very similar, and the price isn’t much higher.

The Ford Ranger is a Maverick alternative that starts under $30,000

Blue Ford Ranger Towing a Boat
Ford Ranger towing a boat | Ford

Firstly, Consumer Reports only recommends three midsize truck models. They are the Honda Ridgeline, Ford Maverick, and Ford Ranger. As a result, the Ranger is a little lost in the shuffle due to a new model and some interesting changes with the popular F-150. However, it remains an excellent midsize truck option, and it’s available. Unlike the Maverick, the Ranger isn’t sold out every time a few are produced.

Plus, it starts at just $25,980. Although it isn’t as affordable as the Maverick, it remains one of the cheaper options in its class. In addition, fuel efficiency with the lone engine, a 2.3-liter turbo four-cylinder, is great. While 14 city and 27 highway mpg don’t quite match the Maverick’s numbers, it’s good for a pickup. Lastly, CR loves the Ranger for its reliability, which is predicted to be very good in 2022 and beyond. There are also rumors that a hybrid powertrain will enter the Ford Ranger lineup sometime during the 2023 model year.

2 Hyundai Santa Cruz trims start under $30,000

A 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz with AWD parked in the woods. Does this pickup truck have all-wheel drive?
2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz | Hyundai

If you’re uninterested in buying another Ford model, Hyundai has a new pickup that’s ripe for the picking. Similar to the Maverick, it isn’t going to out-tow the Ram 1500 or Ford F-150, but it has truck chops and a small body that’s very drivable. CR says the Santa Cruz “drives like a car,” which is perfect for anyone looking for a pickup daily driver. Additionally, the starting trim levels are both very affordable. Buying a base model 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz SE costs $25,735, while the next option, the SEL, is $28,935.

The 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz has two powertrain options, a 2.5-liter four-cylinder, and a turbo version of the same engine. According to CR, Hyundai’s compact truck gets 16 city and 34 highway mpg, which is remarkable. Fortunately, the cheapest version of the pickup is also well-equipped. Every Santa Cruz has Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, forward collision mitigation, lane keeping assist, an eight-inch touchscreen, and a composite cargo bed. Opting for the SEL trim adds things like heated front seats, blind spot intervention, a lockable cargo bed storage bin, and much more.

Great Ford Maverick alternatives

The 2022 and 2023 Ford Maverick are among the most exciting new pickup trucks available. Unfortunately, popularity and a poor ability to produce don’t mix. That’s why getting your hands on a new Maverick is nearly impossible. However, the Ford Ranger and Hyundai Santa Cruz make excellent alternatives, and each remains under $30,000. Buying more expensive trim levels in either model will exceed the $30K mark, as no midsize or compact truck matches the affordability of a Ford Maverick.


1 Compact Truck Has a Superior Interior