The Renegade's funky dimensions come back to bite it.
It was plain for all to see that when the Jeep Renegade hit the market, it was aimed at the elusive millennial car buyer whom it attempted to lure in with Beats by Dre audio, spunky unconventional looks, and utility that the typical twentysomething desires. And then, Spanish automotive outlet KM77 discovered that the Renegade is also able to pull off a stunt known as a stoppie, something that is sure to get motorcycle stunt nerds excited. Wait, what's a stoppie?
For those who don’t know what that is, a stoppie is where a motorcycle brakes hard at the front wheel so that the rear wheel lifts off the ground.
Journalist Pablo David Gonzalez discovered the party trick after attempting to apply maximum brake pressure to a 1.6-liter 4x2 pre-production Renegade while traveling around 84 mph. According to Gonzalez, the front end dipped below the horizon until all he could see was the pavement. Once at a stop, the rear wheels didn’t crash to the ground to signify that they had been in the air, but Gonzalez still had his suspicions. To find the truth, he set up a few cameras and repeated the experiment. What Gonzalez found was nothing short of jaw-dropping. As we can plainly see here, the Renegade’s rear wheels do actually blast into the air, effectively enabling the small SUV do a handstand.
This is dangerous for obvious reasons, and after Gonzalez had reached out to FCA in Spain, he heard back that the brakes were faulty and that this was not actually normal. What happened was that an impact had caused a short circuit in the ABS system, causing inappropriately high amounts of braking force to be sent to the front wheels. Given that this was a pre-production model, FCA claimed that it had fixed the issue and sent Gonzalez another Renegade. This time, Gonzalez was unable to replicate the problem, and having been satisfied, KM77 decided not to publish anything about the incident.
That was until it got a 2016 Renegade test vehicle, this time with a 2.0-liter engine and an automatic transmission. Of course Gonzalez decided to try the test again, if anything, for old times' sake. He encountered the same issue a handful of times but was unable to replicate it later. Unfortunately, this problem isn’t unique to KM77. Italian motoring website HDMotori.it had a similar experience when it tested the Renegade. While the problem more than likely has to do with the high ground clearance and short wheelbase of the Renegade, it’s still a problem that FCA may want to remedy. Given the recent development of these stories the automaker has been unable to respond, but don’t be surprised if it follows up soon.
Skip to about 9:40 to see the Renegade do a handstand.
And here is a clip of the 2016 Renegade failing the same test as well as underperforming in the notorious "Moose Test."