2016 Jeep Renegade Review

  • Performance
    4.2 of 5.0
  • Cost of Ownership
    4.4 of 5.0
  • Interior
    4.0 of 5.0
  • Reliability
    2.0 of 5.0
14 Mar 2016

The Jeep Renegade is an excellent addition to the Jeep lineup. Jeep has noticed that smaller SUVs and crossovers are becoming increasingly popular. As a result, they decided to take matters into their own hands and design the 2016 Jeep Renegade. The architecture and powertrain of the Renegade are identical to those of the Fiat 500L.  It’s not surprising given that Fiat Chrysler Group owns Jeep. Furthermore, the dimensions of the 500L (and 500X) are very similar.

Jeep has now released an updated version of the Renegade for 2016. Jeep shaped, polished, improved, and enhanced it in every way to make it a better end product than the original Renegade.

Exterior design

What makes the 2016 Jeep Renegade unique is that it retains the square-ish shapes that Jeep models are known for. All of its edges, however, are chafed and polished. As a result, there is a distinct Jeep sibling with all of the classic Jeep features. However, this one is a little easier on the eyes because the corners are a little more curvy.

Starting at the front, you’ll notice the round headlights and seven-slot grille, which are unique to Jeep vehicles. These features appear to be well-placed and fit snugly into the front of the car, more so than in previous models. Above that, the hood features two large creases on either side of the middle, harkening back to the original Jeep design.  The lower portion of the front bumper is black, giving the vehicle a tougher appearance. An additional air valance, foglights, and optional Running Daytime Lights are also included. A new feature is that the turn signals are now located directly next to the headlights. Instead of the more common position halfway between the front of the hood and the side mirrors, this is the new position.

The front windshield is extremely steep, nearly vertical. The benefit of this is that the car gains height, which expands the interior space.

Moving on to the car’s side, the most noticeable feature is the Jeep wheelbases that float high above the wheels. High wheels are standard on all intrinsic off-road vehicles. The black material from the front bumpers reappears here, emphasizing the wheelbases and lower portion of the Renegade. The two deep creases on the Renegade’s side add some details and grid to the car.

Side and rear

The appearance of the rims is determined by the trim level of the 2016 Jeep Renegade (there are six). The Sport trim includes the most basic option, which is 16-inch steel rims with all-season tires. The rims are all black with small embellishments and appear a little small in comparison to the 215 mm tire.  To be honest, these rims resemble a tire with no rims at all. Fortunately, there is an option to upgrade the standard trim to 16-inch aluminum rims. These come standard on the Latitude trim and look much more at home.

Let’s start at the back of the 2016 Jeep Renegade with the taillights. These square-shaped red LEDs with a transparent X in the middle are reminiscent of Jeep’s military vehicles from the past. On the left and right sides of the back, there were always two jerry cans with a large dented X on them.  The public loves these gimmicky headlights, and we anticipate that they will return to the 2018 Jeep Wrangler as well.

The Renegade also has a large, slightly darkened, and wide back window. They carved out a small space, specifically for the nameplate. Furthermore, there is a black plastic bumper that wraps around the entire car on the lower part.  As is customary, there is only one exhaust pipe on the right side of the vehicle. It ends in a downward twist so that no water flows into it when you drive the car off-road through a patch of shallow or deeper water.

Finally, ten different colors are available, including Solar Yellow and Omaha Orange. MySky removable roof panels are also an excellent optional feature.

Interior design

What can we expect from the 2016 interior? As cute and fluffy as the Renegade’s exterior appears, especially for a Jeep, the interior is more on the Mr. Hyde side. It has a super sporty appearance, as if it is ready to drive fast and rock the roadless wilderness.  The front seats are ergonomically shaped, with optional seat and steering-wheel heating and an upgrade to leather seats. The driver of the Sport trim can select between black and sand-colored interior details. When you select sand, not only will the seats be sand-colored, but some features on the inside of the doors will be as well.

The steering wheel is thick and sturdy, with a number of buttons for controlling functions such as air conditioning. The center console will have a 5 or 6.5-inch TFT-screen for controlling some functions and watching the view from the reverse-assist camera.

There’s a custom Jeep moveable and closeable compartment in the middle for small items you don’t want flying around when you’re driving off-road. It is very convenient, especially if you drive an automatic. When driving a manual Jeep, the manual brake is located halfway underneath the compartment lid, which may necessitate some handwiggling in order to locate the manual brake.

The rain-sensing windshield wipers and the optional Beats Audio System, which includes nine speakers throughout the vehicle, are both new for the 2016 Jeep Renegade.

Engine specs

The Renegade Sport trim comes standard with a 1.4 liter MultiAir turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a manual transmission, producing 160 horsepower. The other engine is a 2.4-liter “Tiger shark” 16-valve four-cylinder with variable valve lift timing, which is available on higher trim levels.  This engine produces 180 horsepower and is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission as standard. Nine speeds is a lot, and it’s especially useful for fuel economy. All trims have the option of four-wheel drive.

In Europe, drivers can choose between gasoline and diesel engines. There are two diesel engines available, the 1.6 liter MultiJet and the 2.0 liter MultiJet, both with a manual transmission. The 1.6 liter MultiJet can generate up to 110 horsepower, while the 2.0 liter MultiJet can generate up to 140.  Only the 2016 Jeep Renegade Trailhawk, equipped with a 2.0-liter MultiJet turbocharged four-cylinder engine, can produce 170 horsepower.

Surprisingly, the four wheel drive option can direct all of the engine’s power to one of the four wheels if necessary to crawl out of a tight spot. There is also an automatic switching on and off of 4WD to improve fuel economy, and it will be turned on immediately when it is deemed necessary.  These 4WD options are referred to as Active Drive. Jeep also offers Active Drive Low, which has the same options but is specifically designed for off-road use. Both systems offer five terrain modes: auto, snow, mud, sand, and rock (only on Trailhawk trim).

Tech specs

Now we’ll look at the car’s software. The most changes and new tricks from the 2016 Renegade can be found here, because car technology is constantly evolving, with new usable functions being added every month.

ParkSense Rear Park Assist with a backup camera, the UConnect 911 Call Assistance button, lane departure warning system, forward collision warning, Rear Cross Path Detection, and a blind spot monitor are among the technological options. The UConnect Access infotainment system provides navigation and allows the driver to order emergency services with the touch of the screen.

Keyless unlocking, starting and stopping is optional on the higher trims of the Renegade.


In the USA, the standard Sport trim comes at a starting price of $17,995. The Renegade Latitude starts at $21,395 and the 75th Anniversary Edition starts at $23,375. The Limited trim is available from $25,120, next is the Dawn of Justice SE starting at $26,250 and finally the Trailhawk starts at $26,745.

European prices always differ depending on which country you buy the car in, but prices are easily accessible on your country’s Jeep site. On the official Jeep website, you will also find a feature to build your own 2016 Jeep Renegade. You can choose the trim, colour, options and the end-product will show you exactly what the price will be.