Ford attracts youthful and extra feminine consumers with new $20,000 Maverick pickup

Rebecca and Shane Phillips of California pose in front of their car collection, including their new Ford Maverick 2022.

Shane Phillips

Rebecca and Shane Phillips are used to eye-catching when they drive through California in their 1985 Mercury Colony Park or 1978 Lincoln Continental with Longhorns on the front. But the latest eye-catcher in their collection came a little unexpected.

“The looks we get are pretty neat. Everyone I’ve met says, ‘I’ve never seen anything like this,'” said Rebecca, 31. “It’s always fun driving by and someone is surprised what it really is and what it looks like. “

It’s not a classic car, sports car, or electric vehicle. It is the new Ford Maverick 2022, a small pickup truck that recently launched as the automaker’s cheapest vehicle in its full range of cars and trucks for about $ 20,000.

While the vehicle has only been on sale for a little over a month, Ford engine says the compact truck – about as long as a Toyota full-size sedan but at a much lower price and many other smaller cars – is already successfully attracting new, younger, and more cost-conscious buyers like the Phillips.

“We really see a new customer coming to Ford. And that was really our goal with Maverick, targeting a younger, more diverse customer. And we’re definitely seeing that, ”Todd Eckert, Ford Truck Marketing Manager, told CNBC.

Ford sold more than 4,100 Mavericks during the vehicle’s first full month of sales in October. Eckert said the company will continue ramping up production of the truck at the automaker’s Hermosillo plant in Mexico.

Non-truck people

Maverick is not just about selling, it’s also about bringing new customers to Ford. It can act as a gateway vehicle for customers to order Hop into bigger, more expensive Ford pickups like the medium-sized Ranger and the full-size F-150.

According to Ford, early Maverick buyers are younger and more feminine than the traditionally male-dominated truck market.

According to JD Power, a quarter of Maverick buyers are women, compared to 84% male buyers of the full-size pickups, according to Ford. The company reports that more than a quarter of shoppers are also between 18 and 35 years old – double the industry average for that age group. According to JD Power, the average age of a new car buyer is 48 years.

The Phillips said they weren’t “big truck people” or even new car people, but they were drawn to the Maverick because of its price, features, and fuel economy.

It is similar with Christopher Molloy II, who bought a Maverick as his first new vehicle in early October. He traded a compact Chevy Cruze sedan for the pickup.

“I didn’t look for a Maverick first. I didn’t know it existed,” said the 23-year-old Oregonian. “I was looking for more SUV-type. I wasn’t really expecting to get a new truck because they are so expensive until I saw the Maverick come out.”

Ford surprised many with the Maverick’s low price tag as well as its standard 2.5 liter hybrid engine that can reach more than 40 mpg in city traffic. A Maverick with an optional 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbo engine that gets a combined 26 mpg combo, including 30 mpg highway and 23 mpg city, starts at around $ 21,000.

The top vehicles Maverick buyers also see are other small pickups like the Toyota Tacoma and Ford Ranger, as well as small crossovers and even the Honda Civic sedan, according to car research firm Edmunds.

‘Hit the target’

The lower prices are a welcome change for consumers as vehicle prices hit record highs of around $ 44,000, including a rapidly growing supply of expensive pickups that can exceed $ 100,000.

“In 25 years in this business, I don’t know I’ve seen a manufacturer come out with a product that hit the mark so well,” said Derek Lee, general manager of Long McArthur Ford in Kansas. “What we see in buyers is a younger buyer. We see first-time buyers of cars. We have import car buyers.”

The early average price customers pay for the Maverick is $ 29,749, according to Cox Automotive. This includes dealers and customers who choose higher-priced equipment and options for the truck.

Lee said his dealership ordered more than 400 Mavericks. He said the initial demand was the highest he had seen for the store, which specializes in larger Super Duty pickups.

Keep prices low

The Phillips and Molloy said dealers did not raise the price of their Mavericks despite the fact that it is a new vehicle and inventory levels are near record lows due to a persistent shortage of semiconductor chips.

Some dealers who can legally sell a car at any price above the manufacturer’s suggested retail price or MSRP have taken advantage of low inventory levels and according to reports and dealers websites rated vehicles at thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars.

The Maverick wasn’t entirely free of markups. Lee said his dealership won’t upgrade a Maverick if it’s ordered by a customer, but if someone cancels their order and it goes on the dealership lot, they priced it at about $ 2,500 above MSRP.

“When a vehicle arrives here and someone rejects it, we look at the market. We’re still working to be the lowest price on the market,” said Lee. “I know there are some over $ 5,000, I know there are some over $ 10,000. We felt that over $ 2,500 was a very, very fair price.”

Eckert said Ford has no control over how dealers price their vehicles, but they have told dealers the importance of pricing for that vehicle and its target customers.

“We talked about the full range and who these car buyers are and how we want to attract them,” he said. “You control markup or no markup, but we believe affordability was one of the keys.”

Nordstrom takes stake in four Asos style manufacturers to win youthful customers

A woman can be seen shopping at ASOS, the online fashion store, on a laptop.

Dinendra Haria | SOPA pictures | LightRakete | Getty Images

Nordstrom said on Sunday that it has acquired a minority stake in four clothing brands owned by British online fashion house Asos.

The brands – Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge, and activewear label HIIT – are all aimed at younger consumers in their twenties. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Pete Nordstrom, President and Chief Brand Officer of Nordstrom, said he sees the collaboration as an opportunity to redefine the business model of a wholesaler like Nordstrom working with a retailer. He also expects the possibility of further strategic partnerships in the future.

While Asos retains operational and creative control of the Topshop brands, Nordstrom will own the exclusive retail rights for Topshop and Topman across North America.

“By making the Asos brands, including Topshop and Topman, available to our customers, we can create new and excitement,” said Pete Nordstrom in a statement.

The department store has been the exclusive distributor of Topshop and Topman in the USA since 2012. Nordstrom will now be the only stationary location for these brands worldwide.

As of this fall, customers can also pick up online orders from Asos at all Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack locations, the companies said.

Asos acquired Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT in February. The brands were put on the block after the Arcadia Group, the British retail empire run by billionaire Philip Green for 18 years, Filed for bankruptcy protection At the end of last year. Bans put in place during 2020 due to the pandemic dealt a heavy blow to Arcadia, which operated hundreds of stores. Asos, on the other hand, had a purely online business model.

Nordstrom is looking for ways to get its existing customers to return to shopping regularly while reaching out to people who have never visited its stores or website before. It has the potential to weather the pandemic – especially since many people are returning to work and school and need brand new wardrobes.

The company hopes Nordstrom will reach a younger generation of buyers with growing purchasing power by offering exclusive products from Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT.

It could use a boost too. Nordstrom didn’t top its earnings before the pandemic. For the three month period ending May 1st, sales decreased by 13% compared to 2019. Increased labor and shipping costs as well as interruptions in the supply chain have put the business under further pressure.

Nordstrom shares are up about 15% since the start of the year. The company has a market capitalization of $ 5.7 billion.