There are a few notable dynamic compromises of the Renegade 4xe to acknowledge in this section, relative to a typical compact SUV – which the Jeep isn’t, needless to say.
You don’t produce genuine off-road ability in a 4x4 of this size and type without a permanently raised ride height or a set of tyres that, because they’re ready to deal with mud, grass and loose surfaces, don’t grip on dry asphalt as keenly as they otherwise might. Then, of course, you don’t leave the dynamic compromise you’ve already struck entirely unaffected when you add a couple of hundred kilograms into the car by way of batteries and electric motors.
Nobody would expect this car to handle like a Jaguar I-Pace, then, and although it’s a little rough and poorly resolved to drive in some ways, the Renegade’s handling isn’t objectionable, either. When we road tested the regular Renegade at the end of 2016, we reported that it had an “occasionally jostling, bumbling, firmly damped ride” and “slightly sticky, pendulous, over-assisted steering”, but it still handled inoffensively enough to satisfy those predisposed to its “throwback, proper off-roader” dynamic ethos. The 4xe rings most of the same bells.
It has a vaguely teetery-feeling, roll-happy sort of lateral body control, and a busy, occasionally fussy and pitching primary ride on cross- country A- and B-roads. That lateral body control imposes a natural speed limit on your cornering, although it needn’t necessarily be considered a restrictive one; and the primary ride can become a little tiresome on long motorway journeys, when the car’s body seldom settles for long, and on choppy B-road surfaces.