Smallest Jeep gets the shock treatment

4xe combines the 1.3-litre turbocharged Firefly engine that originated in Brazil with 11.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack.

Having introduced the updated Compass last month as its first electrified model in Europe, Jeep has now given the entry-level Renegade the plug-in hybrid 4xe designation on the Old Continent.

Utilising the same setup as its segment-up sibling, the 4xe combines the 1.3-litre turbocharged Firefly engine that originated in Brazil with 11.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that produces 44kW/250Nm. Combined, the powerunit puts out 140 kW or 177 kW in the range-topping Trailhawk, with torque being capped at 270 Nm.  Unique to the 4xe though are three dedicated hybrid modes; the default Hybrid, Electric and E-Save with a regenerative braking system also forming part of the driveline.

A six-speed automatic is the sole transmission available with Jeep claiming an all-electric top speed of 130 km/h, 0-100 km/h in 7.5 seconds and a range of 42 km between trips to the plug. Standard on all models is the e-AWD system and Selec-Terrain which not only features Hill Descent Control and a 4WD Lock function, but also four driving modes; Auto, Sport, Snow and Sand/Mud. In the case of the Trailhawk, a Rock and 4WD Low setting comes standard as well.

In addition, the Trailhawk boasts front and rear skidplates, improved breakover and departure angles of 18 and 28 degrees, 17-inch alloy wheels wrapped in all-terrain tyres, an approach angle of 28 degrees, wading depth of 400 mm and ground clearance of 201 mm.

Build at parent company Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles’ (FCA) Melfi factory in Italy, the 4xe will be offered in three trim grades; Longitude, Limited and Trailhawk with respective pricing, in the United Kingdom, of £32 600 (R682 657), £34 500 (R722 443) and £36 500 (R76 4324). For now though, the 4xe is not earmarked for the South African market.

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