Currently reading: Watch: why the Jeep Avenger is our 2023 Best Small Car
Our editors explain exactly why Jeep’s all-electric SUV is the best small car you can buy in 2023

In its short existence, the all-electric Jeep Avenger has already garnered a staggering collection of silverware – most notably winning the European Car of the Year award before the car was even launched. And in April, it was bestowed yet another trophy for the cabinet when it was named Best Small Car at the 2023 Autocar Awards.

Our panel of discerning judges praised the Avenger for its rugged character, compact yet spacious design and mature handling. But to find out exactly what makes this family SUV the best small car you can buy in 2023, we asked two of our editors to give more detail on what makes it so good. Watch the video below and read on to find out more.

Discover the Jeep Avenger

Made in Europe, for Europe

The Jeep Avenger isn’t just Jeep’s first all-electric car, but the first to be created outside of America. In fact, the Avenger was designed in Italy and is manufactured in Tychy, Poland. It’s truly a car made in Europe, for European drivers.

This, explains Mark, is key to the Avenger’s success: “We’d heard similar from Jeep in the past about having designed its latest small model with Europe in mind. Yet there’s a big distinction between creating a car to that more general brief and creating a car designed, engineered and manufactured in Europe and for European buyers, as it has done with the Jeep Avenger.

“The former had always yielded forgettable results, yet the latter approach has made for something more spectacular. To that end, the Jeep Avenger is our Best Small Car for 2023.”

But it’s not just European DNA that has helped the Avenger find success – the people behind this all-electric SUV are equally as important, says Mark: “Spend time with the team involved in making the Avenger and you’ll be aware just how ‘all-in’ these passionate individuals have been in the project, and how they have worked hard to create a car that brings something truly different to the small SUV class, a part of the market hardly flush with must-own products given how inherently compromised such models are. Not so with the Avenger, which finds a truly unique place in the market.”


Compact design, spacious interior

At just 4.08m long and 1.78m wide, the Jeep Avenger is the most compact B-segment electric SUV on the market. But despite its small stature, the lack of an internal combustion engine and gearbox has allowed Jeep’s engineers to maximise the interior space offered by the eCMP platform beneath.

There’s plenty of space for five, while a modified H-point yields greater leg and head room for rear passengers, says Jeep. There’s also 34 litres of storage space throughout the interior, including a large cubby in the front covered by a magnetic lid. The boot boasts 355 litres of room, while the 60:40 split folding rear seats can open up even more space if you need it. In fact, Jeep claims that with the rear seats folded down, the Avenger has enough room for 2443 rubber ducks…


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Mark says: “While the Avenger might be small on the outside, it never really feels it inside. There is so much storage in the cabin front and rear, and a series of clever cubby holes. There is a cheeriness to the interior design, too, and some really useful touches, including a tray that runs across much of the dashboard that’s handy for storage.”

Adding to that interior cheeriness is the Jeep Avenger’s sleek, modern-looking dashboard. Up front, there’s a crisp 10.25in infotainment touchscreen that comes with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. In front of the driver sits another 10.25in screen, this time acting as the digital driver’s display that puts vital driving information right in your line of sight.

The Avenger’s always-on UConnect Services system helps provide a more seamless and relaxing driving experience thanks to over-the-air updates and live traffic information, while the Jeep Mobile App allows you to locate your car, lock and unlock the doors, check the battery level, program the battery charge and activate climate control.

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Rugged character and charming drive

Jeeps are renowned for their go-anywhere ability, and the Avenger has all the hallmarks to suggest it can live up to those expectations. First, its short overhangs of just 20deg approach, 20deg breakover and 32deg departure angles, along with its 200mm of ground clearance, means it has the proportions of a proper Jeep.

Mark says: “The Avenger’s design is every bit a ‘true’ Jeep and it has a real rugged character. The proportions are spot on and like the very best small cars it has real charm and character.”

When heading onto the rough stuff, the Avenger offers Snow, Sand and Mud driving modes, each of which tailors the electronic controls for those conditions. You get Hill Descent Control, too. Mark says: “We didn’t go off road [in the Avenger] but did drive on one stretch of road that was missing half of its asphalt and had craters that looked like they’d been dug with an excavator. The Avenger swallowed it all up, making the point that it’s as robust as it needs to be on anything you’re ever likely to encounter in the real world.”

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Speaking of the real world, the Avenger gives you the choice of B, Eco, Normal and Sport modes for everyday driving. On the road, Mark was impressed with the Avenger’s mature handling and comfortable ride: “[The Avenger] is keen to turn in and holds a line in a corner with well-controlled body movements and good grip.

“The Avenger rides well, too, even on some fairly scarred roads on our test route in the hills above Nice. It’s a little on the firm side, in part a by-product of the 18in alloys of our test car, yet never uncomfortable and still with an overall suppleness that leads you to think the engineers really took on board the whole ‘make it work in Europe’ mantra. This car feels like it sits towards the more sophisticated end of the class.

“More real-world ticks come from the performance, which is plenty good enough and smoothly and briskly delivered. In short, the Avenger’s charm and character transfers to the way it drives. There’s a real maturity to the way it rides, handles and steers, and the electric power is a boon around town. It feels far more sophisticated than a car this small has any right to.”

In terms of numbers, the Avenger offers up to 154bhp and 192lb ft of instant torque for a 0-62mph time of 9.0sec. You’ll get up to 254 miles on one charge from the 54kWh battery and a 20%-80% charge comes in just 24 minutes thanks to 100kW rapid charging capability.

So, with true European DNA, a compact yet spacious design and impressive drivability, it’s no wonder why the Jeep Avenger was named Autocar’s Best Small Car of 2023. To summarise, Mark said: “All this makes for another award for Jeep to add to the Avenger’s fast-growing trophy cabinet after it scooped Europe’s 2023 Car of the Year award. High praise for the most endearing of small cars, and an unlikely success to really be savoured.”

Discover the Jeep Avenger

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Add a comment…
LP in Brighton 6 October 2023
This is a paid for advertorial, just ignore it.
If the car was that good it would sell on its own merit, instead of relying on advertising disguised as editorial.
TStag 10 September 2023

When Land Rover make the small Defender it shouldn't ape this. It should ape its larger siblings. But if Land Rover are thinking about where a small Doscovery should go, this is it

Bob Cholmondeley 9 September 2023

Does anyone actually watch video adds like this?