Jeep Renegade Hops Aboard the Electrified Vehicle Train
The Drive reports that next year’s pre-production models will begin rolling out in 2019, with the PHEV Renegade offered for sale in 2020.
Jeep’s Renegade is a pint-sized performer that’s been a runaway success for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Chock full of technology, it’s about to get a whole lot more. Along with a mid-cycle styling update, FCA has announced the addition of a plug-in hybrid model to the lineup.
Pre-production models will begin rolling out in 2019, with the PHEV Renegade offered for sale in 2020. The Wrangler PHEV, also coming in 2020, was announced first, but will be arriving a little later than the Italian-built Renegade.
FCA’s Toledo Machining Plant will supply components for the electrified Wrangler, just across town from the Jeep factory in Toledo, Ohio.
By 2022, FCA plans on releasing 12 electric and hybrid drivetrains by 2022. Those will make their way into 30 models. Currently, FCA is only one-tenth of their way towards that goal. With just three models currently offered (Ram 1500 eTorque, Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, and the Fiat 500e), they’ve got a lot of ground to make up.
We wouldn’t be surprised to see a hybrid variant of the Jeep Grand Cherokee that makes use of the Ram 1500 eTorque’s powerplant, or a PHEV Compass. With FCA lagging behind their competitors in alternative fuels and technologies, they’re going to try to work much harder to catch up.
Electric hybrids make sense for off-road vehicles, since electric motors produce such prodigious torque down low in the RPM range. Imagine crawling down a rough, muddy trail with only the sound of your tires disrupting the natural sounds of the forest.
There’s other powertrain options for Renegade buyers, too, as a 177-horsepower 1.3 liter turbo joins the 2.4 Tigershark and the hybrid. Whatever the choice, we’re certain that the Renegade will remain just as capable as ever, and we’re excited to try one of the PHEV models when we have the chance.