Is Toyota Launching a New Compact Truck to Compete With the Ford Maverick?

The instant success of the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz is being watched closely by other automakers. The compact pickup truck market could be a place where we see significant growth over the next few years. This class is an ideal place to see some electric trucks, unibody pickups, and bring more names into the mix. One brand that’s paying close attention to the Ford Maverick is Toyota.

Still unconfirmed: Toyota may have a Ford Maverick rival soon

Front angle view of 2023 Ford Maverick pickup truck with Shadow Black exterior paint color
Shadow Black 2023 Ford Maverick

Toyota has so far been tight-lipped regarding the possibility of a compact pickup truck to sit below the Tacoma in the lineup. A new truck could arrive in the first quarter of 2023 and become a 2024 model. This would be a speedy turnaround for Toyota, which hasn’t offered us any details regarding a new compact pickup truck.

Could the new compact Toyota head to foreign markets?

People loading a sofa onto a new 2023 Ford Maverick pickup truck, highlighting how much a fully loaded one costs
2023 Ford Maverick | Ford

So far, the compact truck market in North America is where we’ve seen the Maverick and Santa Cruz. This doesn’t mean other markets won’t expand to offer smaller and more capable trucks. Cars Guide from Australia highlights the potential interest in this market and speculates that this small new Toyota might arrive in Australia. However, it also hints that it might only be offered in North America.

Americans love trucks, even compact models like the Ford Maverick

Toyota is considering the potential of a small truck and sees that Ford had to close its order books for the 2023 model, as reported by Ford Authority. This order book closure before the calendar changes to 2023 hints at the incredible success this new small truck already offers.

The Toyota brand could be the right brand to add more models to the small truck market.

Which platform will the new compact truck use?

Front angle view of blue 2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz, highlighting affordable pickup truck alternatives costing under $28,000
2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz | Hyundai

If Toyota finds a desire in the market for a rugged, small, body-on-frame pickup truck, a smaller version of the current truck platform for the Tacoma might be the right choice. Of course, both the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz use unibody platforms. The popularity of these two models means it would make more sense for this new compact truck to use the TNGA unibody platform.

A new compact Toyota truck could use the TNGA platform and be similar in size to the Toyota RAV4. The Hyundai Santa Cruz shares a platform with the Tucson. The Ford Maverick shares a platform with the Bronco Sport and Escape SUVs. These SUVs are all natural competitors.

Will a new compact Toyota truck use a hybrid powertrain similar to the base Ford Maverick?

A hybrid powertrain for this new Toyota pickup makes perfect sense. Some of the larger Toyota vehicles have transitioned to hybrid-only powertrains. This brand has led the way in the hybrid market for many years. Could the hybrid RAV4 powertrain become the base system used in a new compact truck? Currently, this is only speculation, but it would make a lot of sense.

It’s a wait-and-see game for this new truck

2022 Ford Maverick: Best hybrid truck
2022 Ford Maverick 2L-EcoBoost AWD Lariat | Ford Motor Company

We don’t have any official news or an announcement to tell us there will be a Toyota compact truck reveal in the first quarter of next year, but it’s certainly possible. If Toyota brings a small truck to the market, you can bet we’ll be ready to tell you all about it.

Next, check out the Ford Maverick FITS system, or watch this video below that discusses the possibility of a new compact Toyota pickup truck.

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