Jeep Renegade and Compass PHEVs: specs and on-sale date

Jeep Renegade PHEV and Compass PHEV launched ahead of order books opening in January

Plug-in hybrid versions of the Jeep Renegade and Jeep Compass SUVs have been launched, with UK order books set to open in January 2020.

The company’s plug-in hybrid powertrain features a 1.3-litre petrol engine and a rear-mounted electric motor: together they provide four-wheel drive, with outputs of 187 and 237bhp expected for the Renegade and Compass respectively.

The Renegade PHEV should cover 0-62mph in around seven seconds, with a top speed of 80mph in electric-only mode. An electric-only range of 31 miles is being targeted, while charging the battery will take under two hours.

An ‘E-Save’ function will be offered, allowing drivers to preserve electric power for later in a journey, while an engine charging mode has also been mooted. CO2 emissions should be less than 50g/km, for London Congestion Charge exemption and low company-car tax.

However, Jeep says that the main benefit of the hybrid system will be performance: the electric motor will deliver a large amount of low-down torque, aiding acceleration and off-road traction.

“The move from mechanical to electric all-wheel-drive is a massive improvement – it’s more capable than the conventionally powered Jeep,” said the firm’s head of product marketing, Marco Pigozzi.

“The enormous torque on offer from the electric motor allows [the car] to easily crawl over rocks and obstacles. And the fact that it’s mounted on the rear axle means [the car] is pushed up hills rather than pulled.”

The Renegade PHEV will come with a steel underbody to offer protection on the roughest terrain, while extensive waterproofing will give the top-spec Trailhawk variant a wading depth of half a metre.

Inside, the instrument cluster and infotainment screen will display key information related to the hybrid powertrain. The first customer deliveries are due to take place in June 2020.

Elsewhere, Jeep has announced that the Wrangler will also gain a plug-in hybrid variant: it’s set to be previewed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January, with a full reveal in July ahead of sales beginning in September 2020.

Previously, Jeep had confirmed that it'll completely remove diesel engines from its range of vehicles over the next five years, with a range of hybrid and electric vehicles taking their place.

In all, the company is going to invest almost £8 billion in electric and hybrid vehicles in that period. The electrification programme will continue in the years that follow, with FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Jeep’s parent company) saying it'll have 30 models with an electrified powertrain by 2022.