The Renegade is currently Jeep’s smallest SUV, made to compete in the subcompact crossover category. However, the Renegade doesn’t need to try hard to be likable, as it carries similar charisma as bigger Jeeps. Besides, if you pick the right spec, you may end up looking at the most capable off-roader in its class.
This year, the changes were quite significant. Some new driving assistant features are standardized, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are finally available from the entry-level Sport. Also, to celebrate Jeep’s 80th birthday, there is a new 80th Anniversary edition available based on the Latitude with a few cosmetic upgrades and additional interior features.
While rivals Mazda CX-30 and Hyundai Kona are trying to adopt a sleek coupe-ish design, the Renegade comes in a fun and boxy packaging. Sitting on top of a Fiat platform, the sub-compact SUV is unsurprisingly funky.
However, despite being small and compact, the Jeep elements never absent. The 7-slot grille is present on the front, and so as the round headlights. The boxy design is typical Jeep, and the matte black lower bumpers, side skirts, and wheel arches indicate sportiness. Lastly, the rear fascia has somewhat of a cute design, with its compact size rear window and squared taillights.
Dimension-wise, it measures 166.6 inches long, 74.2 inches wide, and 66.5 inches tall. It has short overhangs on both ends so that it’s ideal for off-roading. And speaking of off-road, it has a decent ground clearance of 6.7 inches. Move to the top of the range Trailhawk®, that number rises to 8.7 inches, making it one of the most capable off-roaders in its class.
Overall, the 2021 Renegade has a fairly likable exterior design. With Jeep elements all around, it has made it look tough despite its small size.
Inside, the funky theme is toned down a little. Like its bigger brother Compass, the interior design looks vaguely dull but very usable. The materials feel cheap, but seem durable at the same time. Thankfully, the seat material gets better as you move up to the higher trims, and the usage of physical buttons rather than touch sensitives are very appreciable.
In terms of space, the Renegade can fit 5 occupants with a decently large passenger volume of 98 cubic feet. However, although headroom is extra sufficient due to its boxy design, the tight rear legroom may be unpleasant for second-row passengers.
Moreover, the cargo space is decent as well, measuring at 19 cubic feet of volume. Folding down the rear seats will expand it to 50.8 cubic feet. Uniquely, you can also fold down the front passenger seat to expand the flat floor even more for carrying longer items.
With that said, if you desire a larger second-row passenger space and larger cargo space, something like a Honda HR-V is a better bet.
The 2021 Jeep Renegade has nine trims to choose from, but the price differences are slim. Two power units on offer, and both FWD or 4WD configurations are available.
2021 Jeep Renegade Sport
Starting price: FWD – $22,850, 4WD – $24,545
The Sport is the entry-level Renegade, but it is still equipped with modern basic features. It has the best value for money when compared to the rest of the lineup.
Powering the Sport is Tigershark’s reputable 2.4-liter 4-cylinder naturally-aspirated engine, producing 180 hp and 175 lb-ft of torque. Mated to it is a 9-speed automatic transmission, channeling power to either the front or all wheels. With this engine, the Renegade sprints from 0-60 mph in 9 seconds, and it has a top speed of just under 130 mph.
Economy-wise, it is decent but not admirable. We’re talking about 22 MPG/city and 30 MPG/highway for the FWD models, and minus 1 MPG each for the AWD models. It has a 12.7-gallon of fuel capacity that should give you a range of about 305 miles.
As standard, you are getting rather small but dapper black 16-inch steel wheels, white exterior color (with other color options available at an extra $245), and power-adjustable and heated side mirrors.
Inside, there is a black interior color, manually adjusted front seats and steering column, and a dual-zone climate control system as standard.
In the infotainment department, you are getting a 7.0-inch infotainment system, complete with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity and a 6-speaker audio system.
2021 Jeep Renegade Upland
Starting price: 4WD – $25,795
The Upland is based on the Sport 4WD, added with a Trackhawk® body kit, specific 17-inch wheel design, foglights, deep-tinted glass, and roof rails. It has a keyless entry and remote-start system, and inside, there are tangerine interior accents and all-season floor mats.
2021 Jeep Renegade Freedom
Starting price: 4WD – $26,285
Like the Upland, the Freedom is based on the Sport 4WD, added with a Trackhawk® body kit and some matte black accents on the grille, wheels, and roof rails. It also has a few custom decals and Mopar® bits and pieces. Furthermore, there is a keyless entry and remote-start system fitted, and an upgrade in seat material.
2021 Jeep Renegade Jeepster
Starting price: FWD – $24,990, 4WD – $26,685
The Jeepster is based on the Sport trim but added with a few exterior upgrades, such as 19-inch dual-tone alloys, deep-tinted glass, and some exterior decals. It also comes with a unique TechnoGreen Metallic exterior color as standard, and a keyless entry and remote-start system.
2021 Jeep Renegade Latitude
Starting price: FWD – $25,395, 4WD – $26,895
The Latitude is a step up from the Sport with more features and more access to extra packages.
With the Latitude, you get the 2.4-liter naturally-aspirated engine as standard. However, you also have the choice of a 1.3-liter 4-cylinder turbocharged engine, producing 177 hp and 200 lb-ft of torque. It also features the same 9-speed automatic gearbox, the same drivetrain configuration, similar performance figures, and a similar fuel economy (at 23 MPG/city and 29 MPG/highway).
Still, despite having 25 lb-ft more in torque, we would not trade the agile naturally-aspirated traits of the 2.4-liter unit with the turbo lag produced by the 1.3-liter. Besides, the 1.3-liter engine is only available to opt together with a quite pricey luxury package.
There are some nice upgrades from the outside. Some lighting upgrades include the addition of automatic headlights and foglights. It also features 17-inch alloys, roof rails, and body-colored door handles and mirrors as standard.
The nice-to-have features are added inside as well. As a starter, you have another option for the interior color (Black/Ski Gray). The seat material has higher quality, and the steering wheel is now leather-wrapped. Moreover, it has an upgraded driver information display, ambient lighting, and tinted rear windows too.
2021 Jeep Renegade 80th Anniversary
Starting price: FWD – $26,745, 4WD – $28,245
The 80th Anniversary edition is mostly based on the Latitude and is specifically made to celebrate the brand’s 80th Anniversary. A few exterior upgrades include metallic gray finish 19-inch wheels and Satin Granite exterior accents. Moreover, Jeep also throws a custom 80th-anniversary interior trim and a larger 8.4-inch infotainment system with navigation inside.
2021 Jeep Renegade Islander
Starting price: FWD – $27,840, 4WD – $29,340
The Islander is also based on the Latitude, with slightly more refined standard exterior features, including silver finish 19-inch wheels, turning indicators on the side mirrors, and a dual-pane panoramic sunroof.
However, the exterior color options are limited, and you can only opt for it with the 2.4-liter power unit. Also, you’ll lose the ability to add extra luxury packages if you go for this trim.
2021 Jeep Renegade Limited
Starting price: 4WD – $29,445
The Limited has additional luxuries compared to the Latitude; however, it is only available with the 1.3-liter turbocharged engine and 4WD.
Not much changed from the outside. Apart from turning indicators on the side mirrors, black painted roof, and automatic wipers with de-icers, other bits are similar to the Latitude.
Inside is where the additional premium features are significant. It has leather upholstery, a power-adjustable driver seat with lumbar support, and heated front seats and steering wheel.
Moreover, it has a keyless entry and remote-start system as standard, and the 8.4-inch infotainment system with navigation is also present. The rear seats now fold 40/20/40 instead of the regular 60/40, and there is a 115-volt power outlet.
Furthermore, auto-dimming rearview mirror, HD radio, and SiriusXM services are also standard.
2021 Jeep Renegade Trailhawk®
Starting price: 4WD – $29,445
At no additional cost of the Limited, you can go for the Trailhawk® instead. It won’t probably tackle the extreme Rubicon Trail, but there is no doubt that it is the most off-road-oriented 2021 Renegade of the bunch. It is also only available with the 1.3-liter turbocharged engine and 4WD system, complete with low-range settings and hill descent control.
The Trailhawk® possess a new off-road-ready body kit with unique decals, dual-tone 17-inch wheels with all-terrain tires (with full-size spare tire), raised suspension, underbody skid plates, and tow hooks (front and rear).
Not much has changed on the inside compared to the Limited, apart from unique interior accents and all-season floor mats.
Safety and Driver Assist
The 2021 Jeep Renegade is loaded with safety equipment. As standard, it features 8 airbags, electronic roll mitigation, electronic stability control, traction control, hill-start assist, and a rear backup camera. There is also blind spot and cross path detection, forward collision warning, and lane departure warning from the lowest trim.
Unfortunately, some advanced driver assistant features such as adaptive cruise control and automatic parking assist are not standard even on the highest trims. You have to pay extra for them by purchasing additional Luxury packages.
Some significant add-on packages are available to opt for your 2021 Renegade. However, these packages are only available in some specific trims.
Available on Latitude and 80th Anniversary trim, the Convenience Package features a power-adjustable driver seat with lumbar support, heated front seats and steering wheel, and auto-dimming rearview mirror.
Moreover, the rear seats can now fold 40/20/40 for the convenience of carrying longer items and rear passengers at the same time. There is also a 115-volt power outlet, all-season floor mats, and rain-sensitive windshield wipers with defrosting.
Available on Latitude, 80th Anniversary, Limited, and Trailhawk® trim, the Sun and Sound Package features a dual-pane panoramic sunroof and Kenwood premium audio system.
Passive Entry Remote-Start Package
Available on Latitude and 80th Anniversary trim, the Passive Entry Remote-Start Package features keyless entry with panic alarm and remote-start system.
Luxury Package I
Available exclusively on Latitude trim, the Luxury Package I adds the Passive Entry Remote-Start Package with some additions, such as LED headlights (with automatic high-beam), daytime running lights, foglights, and taillights. Safety-wise, adaptive cruise control, and automatic parking assist are also included.
Inside, the 7.0-inch infotainment display is replaced with a larger 8.4-inch with built-in navigation. There is also HD radio and SiriusXM services available.
However, it is worth noting that this package comes together with the 1.3-liter turbocharged engine.
Luxury Package II
Price: 80th Anniversary – $1,940, Limited – $1,595
Available exclusively on 80th Anniversary and Limited trim, the Luxury Package II also adds the Passive Entry Remote-Start Package with adaptive cruise control, automatic parking assist, and LED headlights (with automatic high-beam), daytime running lights, foglights, and taillights. This package is also only available with the 1.3-liter turbocharged engine.
Luxury Package III
Available exclusively on Trailhawk® trim, the Luxury Package III adds premium leather-trimmed bucket seats and LED headlights, daytime running lights, foglights, and taillights to the already well-equipped highest trim.
Price: Latitude & 80th Anniversary – $695, Limited – $595, Trailhawk® – $495
Available on all 4WD models of the Latitude, 80th Anniversary, Limited, and Trailhawk® trim, the Trailer-Tow Package supports the needs of the towing enthusiasts by featuring a 4-pin wiring harness and Class III receiver hitch.
For a subcompact crossover, the 2021 Jeep Renegade has a pretty high towing capacity of up to 2,000 lbs. Unfortunately, Jeep would not recommend towing with its Renegade’s FWD models; hence it provides its Trailer-Tow package only for the 4WD models.
The warranty that Jeep will include on top of your 2021 Compass purchase includes:
- Limited warranty of up to 3 years/36,000 miles
- Drivetrain warranty of up to 5 years/60,000 miles
- Rust warranty of up to 5 years with unlimited mileage
- Roadside assistance program of up to 5 years/60,000 miles
Overall, the 2021 Jeep Renegade is a fun-looking small SUV that may carry a lot of sentimental value. There are many trims to choose from as it seems like it is trying to have multiple personas, and whichever one you ended up getting, it is still a decently practical sub-compact crossover.
If you fancy its full-time 4WD system, you can get it from the already well-equipped entry-level Sport or Upland trim. Upgrading to the Latitude wouldn’t hurt either if you want some of its nicer bits. But for the price, its bigger brother Jeep Compass should be a more comfortable option.
Nonetheless, if you are peeking at the Renegade Trailhawk®, highly consider it if you are looking for a budget off-roader. Just beware that if you want to tackle a Rubicon Trail, you’d probably be better off with a Rubicon.