New baby Jeep SUV spotted testing

New baby Jeep SUV spotted testing

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Jeep is working on a new model to sit under its Renegade crossover and we’ve caught it testing for the first time. It’s likely to launch in Europe sometime next year and it could come with an EV variant. 

Jeep’s parent company Stellantis plans on only selling fully-electric models from 2026, but this new car looks like it’ll be offered with an internal-combustion engine option. 

Our spy shots show a blocky design, similar to the larger Renegade. The upper grille is completely closed off, with two lower grilles visible. There’s also a shallower windscreen for better aerodynamics. The wheel arches are squared-off just like on the Renegade and Compass and we also see the use of roof rails. Around the rear is a roof spoiler, single brake light clusters and crucially, an exhaust. 

The baby electric Jeep could be underpinned by the Stellantis e-CMP platform – as used in similarly sized cars like the Peugeot 208, e-208, 2008 and e-2008, as well as Vauxhall’s Corsa and Corsa e models. This would allow for internal combustion and pure-electric powertrains, although the platform won’t be able to accomodate Jeep’s traditional four-wheel drive.  

Last year, Stellantis boss Carlos Tavares spoke on Jeep’s EV future, “Electrification will amplify Jeep’s core attributes. This new model will launch during the first half of next year and is the first of a comprehensive fully-electric Jeep line-up that will cover every SUV segment by 2025”, he added.

As part of Jeep’s celebrations for its 80th anniversary last year, brand boss Christian Meunier announced that there would be a “fully emissions-free Jeep in every segment by 2025”. However, Jeep’s head of exterior design, Mark Allen, hinted to Auto Express of a possible range expansion to tie in with the electrification: “We’re looking at every segment possible”, he said.

When asked if Jeep’s line-up could extend beyond the Wagoneer at the top end and Renegade at the bottom, Allen said, “Absolutely – we’re looking beyond those projects.

“Renegade is a B-segment so obviously there’s room below that and that’s something we’re looking at. But we’re probably not looking at something larger than Wagoneer – it’s a beast!”

Allen also hinted that other new Jeep models are being considered in addition to the smaller model. “There are a couple of other forks in the road that we’re looking to cover”, he said. “But I’ve got to point out that just a few years ago we had three vehicles and we’re up to this line-up that we have now – we’ve been extremely busy, and it’s really been pushed by market demand and worldwide coverage.

“There’s been tremendous growth to the brand in a short amount of time.”

With the launch due next year it’s too early to suggest that the new model will make use of Stellantis’s new electric technology, announced at the company’s EV day last year. The all-electric STLA Small platform isn’t due until 2026 but could well accommodate four-wheel drive with electric motors on both axles. With batteries ranging from 37kWh, Stellantis is also targeting a range of up to 300 miles from its new models – around 100 miles more than is available from cars on the existing e-CMP platform.

Although Jeep is committed to electrification, Meunier did admit that Jeep was looking at hydrogen power, too. “It’s very exciting,” he said. “We have some ideas of what we can do with it.”

What does the new Jeep EV have to beat? These are the best electric SUVs on sale right now…

Source : Autoexpress.co.uk
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