We have another one Ford Mysterious mule on our hands. This Ford Maverick was discovered on the company’s proven basis that presents an odd mix of camouflage elements and harmonies, leading us to believe that Ford is testing a new or upgraded powertrain.
Let’s start with the air outlets, as they’re definitely a far cry from what we’ve seen in production truck. Instead of a single outlet, under the bed on the driver’s side, the prototype appears to have outlets exiting from what’s currently being inserted in the rear bumper. Our spy has included an old photo of the EcoBoost turbo’s current single-exhaust setup, which we’ve modified for this purpose.
speculate Please write down on paper.
Red circles highlight bushing inserts for exhaust mounts. Since the EcoBoost has only one outlet, it could be reasoned that the exit on the right (passenger side) in this photo, which doesn’t currently have anything fitted, is designed for that purpose. The current outlet exits just below the pads in the bumper (just off the bezel; follow the yellow arrow), which is what appears to have been cut out for this mule:
But please wait a moment. The grille and front fascia have also been revised. Usually, an EcoBoost Maverick there is a lower bumper with a rear grille that has a continuous cooler. That in turn is supported by drag hook sockets and small fog lights or inserts. This bumper appears to be from the base (mixture), but there still seems to be some kind of heat exchanger in that central part. Whether it’s the intercooler for the turbo, part of the air conditioning system, the oil cooler or just an optical illusion is difficult to tell from this distance.
We can see another heat exchanger peeking out above the lower grille insert, but note that behind it, Ford used its camo tape to cover the rest of the opening leading to the compartment. engine. Combined with what we noted above, this seems like the opposite for a high-performance application, which we would expect to require more cooling, not less. Especially consider this as a pickup truck.
It seems odd that Ford would go to any lengths to hide what are likely unfinished wheel holes. The camouflaged wheel design itself is also very strange; Ford could simply use a wheel from another Maverick model if they just wanted to cover them up.
Is high performance a misread here? Is Ford working on another hybrid variant? Perhaps a PHEV? Exhaust routing may be necessary to clean under larger beds the battery pack. So, where will we be? Confused for sure, but equally fascinating.