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Oh, snap, just because the Hyundai Santa Cruz and Ford Maverick are smaller trucks doesn’t mean that they don’t put up a significant fight. For a while, nothing could stop the 2023 Ford Maverick, but now the 2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz is turning the tide as the highest-ranking option. 

2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz vs. 2023 Ford Maverick 

2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz  vs. 2023 Ford Maverick
2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz | Hyundai

According to Edmunds, the 2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz is better than the 2023 Ford Maverick. They awarded the Santa Cruz with a score of 8.1 out of 10, while the Maverick earned a 7.3 out of 10. 

Each vehicle is given an average score based on its performance, comfort, interior quality, tech, towing, storage capacity, value, and wildcard features. For example, the Santa Cruz stands out for having a unique look and an in-bed trunk, while the Maverick has an easy-to-use bed. 

The Hyundai Santa Cruz ranks highly because it offers a powerful turbocharged engine, an impressive assortment of technology features, and a well-thought-out cargo bed with innovative features. 

Plus, the Santa Cruz provides a comfortable ride quality with agile handling. It’s athletic and engaging. 

But the potential drawbacks include expensive upper trims, limited rear visibility, flat seats, and limited passenger space. 

The Ford Maverick is praised for its low starting price on base trims, efficient standard bird powertrain, and peppy acceleration. Plus, there are tons of features to enhance its towing, off-roading capabilities, and safety.

However, it has a bumpy ride quality, the interior feels a little cheap, and some features are pretty expensive to add. Also, the driver’s seat and steering wheel have a limited range of adjustments. 

Does the Santa Cruz or Maverick have more power? 

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz has a standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 191 hp and 181 lb-ft of torque. It can seem a bit underpowered, so critics recommend upgrading to the turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-four engine for 281 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. 

With the turbo engine, the Santa Cruz can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 6.5 seconds. It can tow up to 5,000 lbs and carry a payload of up to 1,906. Both of its engines can be paired with all-wheel drive. 

The 2023 Ford Maverick kicks things off with a hybrid powertrain. It consists of a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, electric motor, and battery pack that generates 191 hp and 155 lb-ft of torque. 

You can upgrade to the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine for 250 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. It can reach 60 mph in about 6.4 seconds. The Maverick can tow up to 4,000 lbs and carry a payload of up to 1,564. However, AWD isn’t available with the hybrid engine. 

Does the Santa Cruz or Maverick have better features? 

2023 Ford Maverick Tremor off-roading
2023 Ford Maverick Tremor | Ford

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz starts at $25,490, and the top-spec 2.5T Limited trim increases the price to about $40,320. 

The 2023 Ford Maverick begins at about $22,195, and the Lariat brings the cost up to $27,995. You may have to add convenience and towing packages to get the features you want. 

Also, the Santa Cruz gets an EPA-estimated 22 mpg and 26 mpg in the city, while the Maverick Hybrid gets an EPA-estimated 41 mpg in the city and up to 33 mpg on the highway. 

The Santa Cruz offers a digital gauge cluster, a larger 10.3-inch infotainment screen, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Both trucks offer a wireless charging pad and a premium audio system. 

While the Ford Maverick has a better fuel economy and more optional packages, the Hyundai Santa Cruz provides more power, comfort, and tech.


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