Unique Unibody Pickups: Honda Ridgeline vs. Ford Maverick

Ford Media touted that the Ford Maverick will get better fuel economy than a Honda Civic. It then became apparent that this truck is poised to compete with a ridiculous range of vehicles. But Honda also offers a unibody pickup truck to North American truck shoppers––the Honda Ridgeline. So how do these two unique unibody pickup trucks compare?

When it comes to Honda Ridgeline vs Ford Maverick it’s no apples-to-apples comparison. But the unique unibody construction these trucks share makes the head-to-head rundown unavoidable. How do they stack up?

Spec to spec: Honda Ridgeline vs. Ford Maverick

A silver 2021 Honda Ridgeline parked in the wilderness, the 2021 Honda Ridgeline is one of the best new pickup trucks under $40,000
2021 Honda Ridgeline | Honda

One of these unibody pickup trucks is in the midsize group, while the other is a true compact pickup truck. The midsize 2021 Honda Ridgeline’s entire lineup runs a 3.5-liter V6 that creates 280 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque. For the Honda truck, all-wheel drive is standard and the powertrain pairs with a nine-speed automatic transmission. 

On the other hand, the all-new 2022 Ford Maverick is here to change the pickup truck game. It’s a ute, a true compact pickup truck with smaller dimensions and a standard 2.5-liter hybrid powertrain that generates 191 hp, sending that to the front wheels. The other engine option for the Ford Maverick is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four with 250 hp and the option for all-wheel drive. 

The Ford Maverick’s hybrid powertrain dominates in terms of fuel economy

The 2022 Ford Maverick Won't Go Over $36k With Every Added Spec
The 2022 Ford Maverick Won’t Go Over $36k With Every Added Spec | Ford

The EPA hasn’t released official stats for the 2022 Ford Maverick. However, according to Ford Media, the hybrid version of this unibody pickup will get 40 mpg on the highway, 33 mpg in the city, and 37 mpg combined. Honda’s unibody truck gets up to 24 mpg on the highway, 18 mpg in the city, and 21 mpg combined. 

That said, we have no word from Ford or the EPA in terms of the kind of mileage drivers will see in the 2.0 liter turbocharged option. Considering the Maverick is a hybrid, it’s really no surprise that this portion of the face-off ends in a landslide win for Ford’s new compact pickup truck. 

Towing tournament: which truck is more capable? 

a blue 2022 ford maverick with bikes and a surf board in the bed
2022 Ford Maverick | Ford

When it comes to towing, the larger V6-powered truck is the clear winner. However, the Ford Maverick can actually handle quite a bit considering its smaller size and more efficient powertrain options. The 2021 Honda Ridgeline tows up to 5,000 lbs, with a payload capacity of 1,583 lbs. 

On the other hand, the 2022 Ford Maverick’s base configurations provide a towing strength of 2,000 lbs; 4,000 lbs is possible, but the tow package must be added. So as far as carrying or pulling a heavy load goes, the Honda Ridgeline is the best bet.

How much smaller is the Ford Maverick than the Honda Ridgeline? 

all-new 2022 Honda Ridgeline posing off-road with two honda dirt bikes in the pickup bed
2021 Honda Ridgeline | Honda

These unibody pickup trucks are definitely different in size. The 2022 Ford Maverick sits on a 121.1-inch wheelbase and measures 199.7 inches long. On the other hand, the 2021 Honda Ridgeline rides on a 125.2-inch wheelbase with a nose-to-tail measurement of 210.2 inches. 

Ford’s little ute has a 5 ft. bed that is 6 ft long with the tailgate down. Over in the midsize segment, the Ridgeline has a 5 ft. truck bed that expands to nearly 7 ft. when the tailgate is dropped down. Each is a versatile vehicle, but the Honda Ridgeline is clearly larger than the new Maverick. 

Honda Ridgeline vs. Ford Maverick

The 2022 Ford Maverick and the 2021 Honda Ridgeline are essentially in a league of their own. The only other unibody pickup truck is the all-new 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz, which will go on sale later this year. When it comes to choosing one or the other in the battle of the Honda Ridgeline vs Ford Maverick, it will largely come down to preference, budget, and priorities.

Each is a great city truck. The Honda Ridgeline starts in the high $30,000s while the Ford Maverick’s prices begin in the low $20,000s. Both are reasonably capable, depending on the buyer’s needs. If you want a larger truck with a V6, the Honda unibody truck is the way to go. For buyers seeking a hybrid option with car-like fuel economy, they’ll want to check out the Ford Maverick.

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