Ford Is Still Refusing To Give Us A Faster Horse

Henry Ford incorporated Ford Motor Company in 1903. He supposedly said “If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse.” So for over a century, his company has subverted expectations and continually engineered cars that drivers did not know they needed. The Ford Maverick is the latest in a long line of unexpected Ford vehicles that are impossible to ignore.

Ford’s informal motto

Blue Ford sign hanging on a bright blue wall.
Ford logo | STAN HONDA/AFP via Getty Images

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According to Quote Investigator, Bill Ford revealed the family company’s informal motto during a January 2006 call with investors. Here’s what he said:

“My great-grandfather once said of the first car he ever built, ‘If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse.’ At Ford, we’re going to figure out what people want before they even know it and then we are going to give it to them.”

Bill Ford

By this logic, Ford’s first automobiles were what people actually wanted when they still said they wanted a faster horse. But the Ford Motor Company didn’t stop there. The affordable Model T was what motorists needed when they said they wanted a more luxurious automobile.

Some of Ford’s greatest successes have gone against the grain: you could say the Ford Mustang was the youthful pony car people actually wanted when they thought they wanted bigger, heavier muscle cars. And now Ford Motor Company has done it again with its runaway hit: the Maverick compact pickup truck.

Ford just shook up the truck market

Light blue 2022 Ford Maverick driving down a coastal highway, the sea visible in the distance.
2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid XLT | Ford Motor Company

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The pickup truck market is packed with competitors. The Toyota Tacoma, Ford Ranger, and General Motors’ Colorado/Canyon are battling for their share of the midsize pickup truck market. Meanwhile, the compact Honda Ridgeline often comes in last place for pickup truck sales.

It seems counterintuitive that Ford would introduce a third pickup truck, into the ignored compact segment. But in 2021, the Blue Oval debuted a true compact pickup truck on the new Bronco’s chassis. The Ford Maverick was destined to change the truck market forever.

The 2022 Ford Maverick is impossible to ignore

Promo shot of the 2022 Ford Marverick towing a jet ski up a hill, the ocean behind it.
2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid XLT | Ford Motor Company

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But here’s the thing about the 2022 Ford Maverick: it’s impossible to ignore. When equipped with a hybrid powertrain, the Ford Maverick earned an unprecedented 42 mpg around town fuel efficiency rating. It gets 33 mpg on the highway and 37 combined.

Not only can the Ford Maverick save you money at the pump, but it can save money overall: this compact truck starts at under $20k. The reason the Ford Maverick is impossible to ignore is that motorists who might have never considered a truck before are now buying a Ford Maverick. This is Ford’s gateway truck.

Yet again, Ford gave us a vehicle that we did not know we needed. And buyers love it. According to TFL Truck, in January 2022, the Maverick outsold both the Ford Ranger and the Toyota Tundra. You can see Doug Demuro’s full review of the Ford Maverick in the video below:

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