The buzz is already building for the new Jeep Renegade following the official debut of the compact SUV at the 2014 New York International Auto Show. Some good, some bad, but it certainly has sparked some discussions among consumers and journalists alike. Of course, a lot of the talk has been centered on the exterior design, which has taken some criticism from die-hard Jeep enthusiasts. Still, I can think of five major reasons the Renegade will do well if it lives up to its performance capabilities, which I fully expect it will.
1. It’s a Jeep
Despite the fact it doesn’t really look like traditional Jeep, it still bears the iconic nameplate, and that alone will go a long way with its target market. Unlike some previous Jeeps that seemed to just duplicate other models in the line-up, the Renegade seems more clearly focused on establishing a new and younger generation of Jeep fans.
2. The Look Fits the Market
There’s no arguing that when it comes to the world of Jeeps, the exterior design of the Renegade is, well, rather odd looking. But in a world of younger consumers, it’s really not that odd at all. In fact, the SUV’s unique styling cues actually resemble those of other compact vehicles that have had a lot of success in the marketplace. In short, the more unique the better with this demo.
3. Perfect for the City
While the mere mention of the Jeep brand has typically always been synonymous with off-roading, there are a lot of Jeep owners who never venture far from urban terrain. While I fully expect the Renegade to live up to the capabilities of a Jeep, the target consumers for the SUV are probably even less likely to drive out of the city, which is where the Renegade will really shine because of its size and functionality as a sub-compact.
4. It’s Loaded with Technology
Make no mistake about it, when it comes to younger consumers, technology reigns supreme. In fact, many buyers in the demo rank it as a major factor when purchasing a vehicle. With the availability of Uconnect and 70 advanced safety and security features, the Renegade will offer some of the best technology in the segment.
5. It Should be Very Affordable
Although Jeep has yet to release an official price on the Renegade, I’m suspecting it will come in somewhere around $16,000 for a base model; well, at least it should to be competitive, which would make it a pretty good deal for a Jeep. Cost will certainly be a deciding factor in exactly how big of a hit the Renegade will be among its target consumers.