By Mauricio Lezcano / carsntravel.com / Photos FCA Media
For 2016, the Jeep Renegade Limited 4X4 delivers a unique combination of best-in-class off-road capability, convenience, a nine-speed automatic transmission that contributes to outstanding on-road and off-road driving dynamics, and a host of innovative safety and advanced technology offerings.
The front, is decidedly Jeep with its signature seven-slot grille and accent colored shield surround. Like the Wrangler, the body-color vertical windshield surround provides visual strength to the vehicle. Large circular head lamps are tucked under the hood at the top for a meaner look. Below the grille, a two-piece front fascia is aerodynamically tuned and features a body-color upper and molded-in-color lower for durability against the elements.
Linking the side profile to the rear is the familiar Jeep shield-shape that ties in the rear backlight and Wrangler-like square tail lamps with black accent surround. For added detail, the tail lamps feature a new X form design theme inspired by military equipment exuding strength and playing on Jeep brand’s roots; For added safety and convenience in inclement weather, the 2016 Jeep Renegade Limited 4X4 now offers rain-sensing wipers as standard equipment.
The interior has a distinctive form language; which Jeep designers have titled Tek-Tonic. This design theme is defined by the intersections of soft and tactile forms with rugged and functional details. Major surfaces, such as the sculpted soft-touch instrument panel, are intersected with bold functional elements like the passenger grab handle, indispensable for off-road adventures and borrowed from its big brother, the legendary Jeep Wrangler.
Unique protective clamp fasteners, anodized design accents and inspired colors are derived from extreme sports equipment, while the newly familiar X shapes inspired by its roof and tail lamps add to Renegade’s Tek-Tonic interior look. And to make sure all of the needed passenger gear fits, the Renegade Limited is designed with an efficient and flexible interior package that includes a fold-forward front-passenger seat and removable and height adjustable cargo floor panel.
Expanding the brand’s open-air freedom that originated with the legendary 1941 Willys MB Jeep, the Jeep Renegade offers two class-exclusive My Sky open-air roof systems. With a manual removable, or premium power tilt/slide with removable feature, the innovative My Sky roof-panel systems quickly bring the outdoors inside. Designed for convenience, the honeycomb fiberglass polyurethane roof panels are lightweight and stow neatly in the rear cargo area. For added design detail, both My Sky roof systems feature a debossed X stamped into the roof that exude strength and play on the brand’s utilitarian history.
The Uconnect 5.0 system features a 5-inch touchscreen that enables hands-free calling via Bluetooth-equipped phones, as well as voice-command control of AM/FM, and optional SiriusXM Radio and USB media port.
Upping the ante is the available Uconnect 6.5AN model with a 6.5-inch touchscreen display, voice operation of AM/FM and standard SiriusXM Radio, mobile phones and navigation system.
Additional features include hands-free calling, text messaging and audio streaming via compatible Bluetooth-enabled phones, personalization settings and a premium media hub with USB and auxiliary ports, as well as SD card reader. The Uconnect 6.5AN system is available with an optional ParkView rear backup camera.
Efficiency and refinement also are hallmarks of FCA US 16-valve, 2.4-liter Tigershark I-4 engine with the MultiAir2 electro-hydraulic fully variable valve-lift system. The high-tech engine produces 180 horsepower, 175 lb.-ft. of torque and is paired exclusively to the segment’s first nine-speed automatic transmission on 4×2 and 4×4 models.
The 2.4-liter engine’s MultiAir technology uses a column of oil in place of the traditional mechanical link between the camshaft and intake valves to maximize intake manifold pressure and significantly reduce pumping losses. MultiAir2 takes the innovation further by simultaneously controlling both valve opening and closing events to more effectively manage combustion quality and compression ratio, all to improve fuel economy and performance.
The 2016 Jeep Renegade Limited symbolizes the brand’s renowned American design, ingenuity and innovation; Renegade Limited expands the brand’s product portfolio and targets the rapidly expanding small SUV segment with a best in class combination of fuel efficiency, while at the same time delivering outstanding driving dynamics.
EPA fuel economy estimates are 21 mpg city and 29 mpg highway. The base manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $26,995.00 for the 2016 Renegade Limited 4X4, the one I drove included the Advance Technology Group, Passive Entry Keyless N Go Package, Safety and Security Group, 6.5 Inch Navigation Group with Uconnect, My Sky Power Retractable / Removable Panels, Beats Premium Audio System and 18-inch X 7.0-inch Aluminum Polished Wheels, and it came in at $33,560.00, which includes a $995.00 destination charge.