We’ve been looking forward to the baby Jeep for months and now it’s finally made its official debut at the Geneva Motor Show.
Jeep is claiming a best in class off-road ability thanks to two all-new 4×4 systems called Active Drive (a full-time 4×4 system) and Active Low (20:1 crawl ration.) Both systems can provide up to 100 percent of the engine’s available torque to the ground, through any wheel, for optimal grip.
The Renegade is also the first small SUV to feature a disconnecting rear axle and power take-off unit (PTU) – all to provide 4×4 models with enhanced fuel economy. The system instantly engages when 4×4 traction is needed.
Both Jeep Active Drive and Active Drive Low 4×4 systems include the Jeep Selec-Terrain system, providing up to five modes (Auto, Snow, Sand and Mud modes, plus exclusive Rock mode on the Trailhawk model) for the best four-wheel-drive performance on- or off-road and in any weather condition.
Speaking of the Trailhawk, let’s take a look at what it offers over and above the standard model. You get all of the off-road systems mentioned above, an increased ride height, skid plates, unique bumpers that improve the approach/departure angles, 17-inch all-terrain tyres, up to 205mm of wheel articulation, hill-descent control, a 480mm wading depth and a tow rating of 1 500kg when specified with the 2,4-litre Tigershark engine.
The interior was designed using a design language Jeep calls Tek-Tonic. It’s basically a mix of soft materials and rugged designs. All we know is that we like it and you do get a lot of equipment as standard. These luxuries include Jeep’s Uconnect touchscreen infotainment system, a full colour instrument cluster display, seven airbags and a host of electronic driver aids. Buyers will also have the option of choosing between two My Sky open-air roof systems.
The Renegade will offer up to 16 strategic powertrain combinations – the most ever in a Jeep vehicle. Powertrain options include four MultiAir petrol engines, two MultiJet II diesel engines, a flex-fuel capable E.TorQ engine, stop/start technology, two manual and one duel-clutch transmission.
It’s also set to be the first small SUV with a nine-speed automatic transmission. When paired with either the 2.0-litre MultiJet II diesel engine, or 2.4-litre MultiAir2 petrol engine, the nine-speed transmission delivers numerous benefits customers will appreciate, including aggressive launches, smooth power delivery at highway speeds and improved fuel efficiency versus a six-speed automatic transmission.
No SA release date has been set, but we hope it finds its way here sooner rather than later.