When it comes to compact pickup trucks, there aren't many options on the market to choose from. The dormant segment was only recently revived when the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz began hitting dealer lots in late 2021, and buyers who have been starving for a tiny truck finally had something to purchase smaller than a Ford Ranger or Nissan Frontier.
But not all trucks are created equal. One of the best judges of a truck's popularity is how well the vehicle actually sells. With more than a year of teething under their respective belts, both the Maverick and Santa Cruz have been selling like hotcakes. However, year-end sales data for both automakers reveals that the Ford Maverick has been outselling its direct competitor at a rate of nearly double through 2022.
This week, many automakers—including Ford and Hyundai—released their year-end sales results. These industry reports typically detail how a company is doing financially, but also often break out the sales performance of particular models. And as it turns out, Ford's figures revealed that the Maverick has been absolutely demolishing the Santa Cruz in overall sales.
Hyundai sold 36,480 units of the Santa Cruz throughout 2022. That number is fairly impressive alone—it's no Toyota Camry, but for a recently revived market segment, it's pretty darn good...until you look at the Maverick. Ford sold more than double its chief competitor, ending the year with 74,370 units of the Maverick delivered to customers. For context, that's one truck every seven minutes.
Now, one could argue that these two trucks, despite being in the same segment, are geared toward different buyers. The Maverick is a Swiss Army Knife of utility while the Santa Cruz is more of a lifestyle-themed crossover with a bed. Nonetheless, the trucks have more than just a few similarities and certainly have some overlap in potential buyers.
The Santa Cruz isn't the only truck to lose sales to the Maverick. In fact, Ford's very own Ranger had a significant sales dip in 2022, selling just 57,005 units compared to nearly 95,000 units the year prior. Part of that could be that a new generation Ranger is coming soon, but nonetheless.
Perhaps even more impressive is that Maverick sales achieved nearly 11% of the F-Series' total volume for 2022 all on its own. The truck's overwhelming demand even forced Ford to close its order books for the Maverick multiple times last year.
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