Driving Report: The Jeep Renegade

With the new Renegade Jeep wants to go new ways and join the stage of the Opel Mokka or the Nissan Juke put. Even at the presentation on the Fiat site in Balocco, it was confirmed that the Jeep wants to conquer a new niche. Younger and more feminine than the other Jeeps, it should be and hit the target - that’s the concept. Then we take a closer look at the little American with Fiat genes. It is clear at first glance the new Jeep Renegade is anything but female. Edged and masculine he stands there. 

The off-road toddler produced in Melfi, Italy, is based in part on the Fiat 500 L family and this is best seen in profile. The small compact is to expand the Jeep brand into the small SUV segment for the first time in the world and with the best in class in terms of fuel efficiency and dynamic driving characteristics on paved roads Off-road capabilities of a jeep combine.

The new Jeep Renegade, the small dose of anabolic steroids for everyday use?

 

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The Jeep Renegade is built in four model variants, whereby we particularly looked at the Limited and TrailHawk variants. The latter already showed during the presentation that he is anything but delicate and likes to tackle the harder ways off the road. My first test vehicle was the Jeep Limited with a 140 hp 1,4 liter MultiAir petrol engine under the hood and in carbon black. The cute junior jeep looks more impressive than expected, the way it stands in front of you. It would seem that one could tackle the city and show others how good it is. With a length of 4,25 meters and a width of 1,80 meters, it is not much more delicate than other Jeep family members, even if you can recognize the Italian handwriting. A “Detroit-Rome cartridge” then.

The special lines create a unique side profile that you may or may not like. But Jeep managed to achieve the premise of creating a high recognition value.

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ET sends his regards

Especially in the memory remained the description of the ventilation slots in the interior in the middle of the dashboard. These would have been modeled on ET and now I always see alien heads when I enter the Jeep Renegade. Achieved goal, I would say. The designers have also made every effort to give the Renegade an individual look. Only 10 colors and seven different wheel designs are available for customization, not to mention all the extras that the supplier Mopar has developed especially for the Renegade. From the Ami star to the bike carrier, nothing remains to be desired. For all who love it authentically.

The entire design shows the traditional brand values ​​such as the indispensable and typical slots in the front. Just as the round headlights and taillights, which should remind of the original Jeep. The first Jeep from 1941 runs through the entire Renegade in small details such as in the form of the gas tank, which is found in stylized form again and again. This is a bit like a little search game that continues from the outside to the inside. Here is the limited version of a fairly high-quality facility. Comfortable leather seats keep the driver and front passenger in place and overall, there is a pleasant ambience. What is missing, however, are shelves. You look in vain and what is available just enough for a cell phone and a few keys.

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As soon as the driver has slightly longer legs, it is not easy for passengers in the rear. If he pushes the driver's seat accordingly far back, it becomes significantly tight. Apart from that, the giant seats have plenty of headroom, which protects against unpleasant headache scenarios, especially in the TrailHawk on rough terrain. However, further back the available space looks different. Without the rear seat folded back, the trunk has a volume of only 351 liters, which can be expanded to 1,297 liters. A tailgate that is quite difficult to close without a handle leaves marks on the fingers.

Square, convenient, cozy

Practical details such as a handle for the passenger above the glove compartment that can be opened wide underline the Jeep character, but lack any feminine touch. Here in particular one could have put a little more emphasis on a “feminine” design without losing the Jeep personality. Details on the speedometer show the adventurous off-road nature of the Renegade as well as the rather coarse multifunction steering wheel, which, however, lies very comfortably in the hand. Thanks to good insulation, the engine shows its quiet side and is really hardly audible. However, you don't feel much of the 140 hp when you press the accelerator pedal. This may also be due to the rather brawny front of the Renegade, which doesn't seem particularly aerodynamic. But it doesn't have to be sporty and fast either. It's a jeep, it just has to be square, practical and good. And he is, without a doubt. With three petrol engines with between 120 and 170 HP and four diesel engines with between 120 and 170 HP, the little power dwarf also shows its strengths in the city, where the adventure begins when others stay behind. Despite its compact appearance, it is easy to handle thanks to its small turning circle and good maneuverability. The chassis, which has been carefully tuned, ensures a pleasant ride, to which the smooth six-speed transmission also contributes. Nothing stands in the way of a leisurely tour overland with the Jeep Renegade Limited.

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We did not quite manage the consumption stated with 6,0 liter.  

Pleasing is the price for the Jeep Renegade basic version. Here, the American dream starts under 20.000 Euro and already enjoys many pre-orders. Who wants to have a bit more fun, must therefore reach deeper into the bag. Very fast may enjoy the Opening Edition, which will bring much more features than the later basic version. So if you already toyed with the small Mucki SUV, it should secure itself right at the start of the market.

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At the end...
Practical, square, good. The little Jeep Renegade shows off its best side and allows relaxed, safe driving. Not least because of the vast amounts of security systems. Its unique design makes it an eye-catcher and offers a high recognition value, not least thanks to the many customization options. And even if he acts a little at times like a fiat on anabolic steroids, we like him so masculine and muscle-packed. That's the way it is for a Jeep from home. Edgy and different, we do not want him at all. However, if the announcement comes to conquer a more feminine market, then here and there, something should be fine-tuned design and if it was just a touch in the interior, but then please not with the nail file.

More impressions:

Photos: Simone Amores / Manufacturer

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