Hybrid But No EVs Among Vehicle of Year Award Winners

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2022 Ford Maverick – with a hybrid powertrain as standard equipment – is the North American Truck of the Year./Ford

In a year in which several outstanding EVs were in contention for top honors, value pricing seemed to be top of mind among jurors as Ford’s Maverick compact pickup, which uses a hybrid gas-electric system as its standard powertrain, was been named North American Truck of the Year for 2022, edging out the all-electric Rivian RT1 pickup and the internal combustion Hyundai Santa Cruz.

Honda’s 2022 Civic, which no longer includes a hybrid variant or the US., was named Car of the Year while the Ford Bronco – internal combustion only – won Utility of the Year honors and made it a twin win year for the Blue Oval marque for the second year in a row.

The Bronco outscored the highly praised all-electric Hyundai Ioniq 5 crossover and the Genesis GV70 luxury crossover in the Utility Vehicle category; the Civic out-pointed the Lucid Air electric luxury-performance sedan and the Volkswagen Golf (GTI and R trims) in the Car segment. The nine semifinalists were selected from a field of 36 nominees

The Ford F-150, which has hybrid powertrain options for six of its seven trims, and the all-electric Ford Mustang Mach-E won Truck and Sport Utility Vehicle of the year honors in 2021.

The North American vehicle of the year awards are an annual event by the nonprofit, independent North American Car and Truck of the Year organization.

A panel of 50 print, on-line and broadcast media automotive journalists from the US. and Canada makes its selections from all new or significantly updated models introduced each year.


The 2022 Ford Maverick, a compact pickup with a base price – including delivery – of $21,490, was called “the first affordable, efficient, entry-level vehicle that happens to provide pickup truck utility” by one juror, while another said it is a value leader that deservs the win as “one of the most compelling packages you can buy in 2022.”

The compact four-door “supercab” pickup’s standard powertrain is a 191-horsepower hybrid system combining a small electric motor and battery with a 2.5 liter inline four-cylinder gas engine. The hybrid is EPA rated at 37 mpg combined city and highway driving.

In a switch from the norm of hybrids costing more than their strictly internal combustion siblings, Ford offers a turbocharged 2-liter Eco Boost engine rated at 250 horsepower as an alternative powerplant for the Maverick – for a $1,085 premium

The top Maverick trim, the Lariat hybrid, starts at $27,355.

All-wheel drive in available on all Maverick trims as a $3,305 option that includes the Eco Boost engine.


Car of the Year: 2022 Honda Civic sedan./Honda

In the car category, the redesigned 2022 Honda Civic was selected. one juror said, for combining “just about every positive attribute you can think of — low-cost, high fuel efficiency, utility, comfort, dependability, and fun to drive among them.” Another called the new Civic “bulletproof, brilliantly engineered and fun-to-drive…the kind of affordable car that every automaker should aspire to.”

The 35-mpg (combined) Civic sedan starts at $23,365. Honda – as of late October 2021 – said that while the 2022 Civic Hatchback in Europe and Japan will be a hybrid, the 52-mpg Insight sedan, which starts at $26,775, will continue to be its 2022 compact hybrid passenger car offering for the U.S. market.


2022 Bronco is North American Utility Vehicle of the Year./Ford

Ford’s 2022 Bronco ute was lauded as a “credible” competitor to the Jeep Wrangler that’s “more comfortable and civilized” on the highway and “performs as least as well off-road.

It is available in 2- and 4-door configurations and a wide variety of trims. The base 2-door 4-cylinder, manual transmission Bronco’s 20 mpg combined city-highway efficiency rating ties the similar 2-door, four-wheel drive Wrangler’s.

That base model’s $30,795 starting price bests the v-6 equipped base Wrangler’s $31,320.